Should I help my seedlings break through the soil?

Question by Natalie: Should I help my seedlings break through the soil?
Hello I have started an indoor herb garden from seeds (Basil, Coriander, Parsley) and my Basil plants are growing really well, the ones around the edges have broken through the soil and have two leaves (still very young and small). However, the soil in the middle has been pushed up, should I lift and overturn this to allow the seedlings underneath it to push up easier, or should I leave it and let them push through on their own? Would pushing the lifted soil down be bad for the seedlings underneath?

Best answer:

Answer by dumplingmuffin
just let nature do it on its own

Give your answer to this question below!


  1. No. Leave the seedlings alone. They’re very delicate and tender at that stage and you might damage them. They’ll emerge on their on as long as you used viable seeds to begin with. Just be patient.

  2. Make sure that your seeds aren’t planted too deep. They should only be planted twice as deep as the seed itself not any deeper and I’ve always had good success barely covering the seed with any soil. You would be fine to brush away any loose soil on top of the seeds just to make it less difficult for them to fight through the soil. Keep the soil moist but not soaking wet and water when the soil is dry down to your first knuckle.

    If you do decide to move soil be careful not to disturb the seeds because you do not want to damage the cotyledons or their initial tap root.

  3. No I do not recommend you help your seedlings break through the soil. The seed is not ready to germinate because it will push through the soil on it’s own. It must be developed enough to push through and helping it along may harm them. Make sure they have enough water but do not over water and try to just be patient as Mother Nature will germinate tham when the seeds are ready.