If you are a keen gardener, you will likely want to get a start on your spring seedlings as quickly as possible or be able to extend the growing season for as many plants as possible. A propagation tray is a great way to get that head start that you want.

Heated trays help to improve germination and keep humidity levels constant creating the ideal environment for growing. Hydroponic trays take all the hassle out of watering the seedlings.

In this post, we will look at the top propagation trays to help you decide which ones are best suited to your needs.

Best Heat Propagation Trays

A heat propagation tray comes with a heating pad that is placed underneath it.

For most people, this is used as a germination tray for when temperatures are really cold, but it is helpful even in warmer climes because it gives the plants the source of heat they need for energetic growth.

Hydrofarm’s Jump Start CK64060


This is a good starter model – it is reasonably priced and comes with everything that you need, including a plastic tray with space for 72 seedlings, the dome, and the heating mat. This heating pad work really well and the dome is higher than normal to give seedlings more space to grow.

 

Best Hydroponic Trays

Hydroponic trays work along similar principles. The main difference, however, is that the plants are grown in water that has a rich nutrient mix in it instead of in soil. They might use heating pads and domes as well, but this is not always the case.

Hydroponics is a little more involved than planting in soil, but when you get it right, you can expect better crops over a shorter period and using less space.

 

DWC Hydroponics System Growing Bundle


This bundle gives you everything that you need to start off, and it comes in at a reasonable price as well.

It’s beginner friendly and directed at herbs, however, in our experience, this can be used to germinate almost any kind of plant.

Best Propagation Trays with Thermostat

These do initially cost a little more. It will also usually work on a domed system with a heating pad, but this time you have a thermostat as well.

The advantage here, though, is that the thermostat keeps the heating pad at the ideal temperature. It does this by measuring soil temperature and comparing that to the ambient air temperature.

You will set the temperature that you want to keep the soil at and then let the thermostat do its work. It is one of the easiest ways to ensure that your seedlings do sprout faster and grow at optimal rates.

 

Vivosun 10″x 20.75″ Germination Kit


This is the best option here because it contains everything that you need to get you started and offers real value for money.

You get your tray, the heating pad, the dome and the thermostat.

All you need to do is plug it in and ready to roll.

 

Wrapping it Up

We have given you three excellent choices to get started off with. We chose options that are reasonably priced so that you don’t have to worry about breaking the bank and you still get great results.

Which one you select is going to depend on which suits you best, but for our money, the Vivosun is the best option. With the thermostat, you are able to ensure that your plants are getting the warmth they need to stay nice and toasty, without getting roasted.