gardening & outdoors

Best Heated Propagator

Kim
16th December, 2021 | 18 minute read

Are you currently looking for a heated propagator?

To help make your search slightly easier, we have created this handy guide that will provide you with everything you need to know to make the right decision on a new heated propagator.

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In this guide, we will go over what a heated propagator is, how to use a heated propagator, the different types of heated propagators, and some of the main things that you should look out for when choosing which model you should buy.

We will also provide you with an in-depth list of the best heated propagators on the market, along with a pros and cons list for each of the different models to help you find the right one to suit your needs.

What Is a Heated Propagator? 

First, let’s explore what a heated propagator actually is...

A heated propagator is a cost-effective way of helping gardeners to germinate their seeds in a much more efficient and effective way.

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Seeds that are germinated within an electric heated propagator tend to grow into much healthier plants because they experience a more comfortable and consistent start to life than germs that are left to germinate completely naturally.

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How Does a Heated Propagator Work?

A heated propagator works by producing a microclimate of humidity and warmth that remains at a constant level. This steady level of warmth and humidity allows seeds to germinate much more quickly than they would ordinarily. The seeds tend to germinate very effectively and cuttings will root very quickly.

The base of a propagator heater contains an electrical element that evenly distributes the heat needed for the process to succeed. The device also features a ventilated cover that ensures there is good air flow, therefore, reducing the risk of fungal diseases.

Types of Heated Propagator

There are several different types of heated propagators. We have created the list below so the different types of heated propagators so that you can learn the differences between each type and determine which type would suit your needs best:

Electric Heated Propagator

An electric heated seed propagator requires electricity to heat the base of the unit. This helps some cuttings or seeds that require heat to root more successfully.

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There is a wide variety of options to choose from when it comes to heated electric propagators and the price range is very wide depending on the model that you choose. Some models are small and others can be very large.

Air Valve Heated Propagator

An air valve heated propagator features an air vent that allows excess moisture to escape and provides good ventilation.

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These propagators easily retain warmth and moisture but also have the benefit of the vent to prevent your young growths from becoming too hot or humid.

Cutting Heated Propagator

Cutting heated propagators allow you to take a cutting from another plant and grow a new plant. You simply find a plant you like, take a cutting, pop the cutting in a cuttings propagator, wait for it to root, and then pot your new plant.

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This is great for when you want to grow plants from cuttings rather than from seeds.

Geopod Heated Propagator

A geopod heated propagator extends the daylight whilst propagating at the same time. These propagators use lights that sit in specially designed grooves within the lid and emit a spectrum of light that helps your planta grow lush green and also helps to prevent seedlings from becoming too weak.

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These propagators are more advanced than most other types and, therefore, tend to cost more.

Thermostat Heated Propagator

Thermostat heated propagators are ones that have a thermostat within them so you can see the temperature and control the temperature according to your needs.

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Certain seedlings and cuttings will require certain temperatures for optimum growth. With this in mind, a thermostat propagator can work very well in these cases.

Best Heated Propagator

If you’re searching for a heated propagator, it can be overwhelming trying to find the best one to suit your needs.

To help make your decision a little easier, we have created the list below of the best heated propagators and we have also listed the pros and cons of each one:

Best Electric Heated Propagator

EarlyGrow MPL50034/C/P Heated Electric Propagator

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This high-quality three-bay windowsill propagator is made from durable and robust injection moulded plastic and features a shatter-resistant lid. The system is made to last for many years.

The electric heating element allows the soil temperature to reach around 16-19 degrees Celsius. This is perfect for the growth of seeds and cuttings.

The clear lids provide maximum light and the adjustable ventilation allows you to adjust the humidity and air flow according to your plant’s needs.

The individual trays and bays are provided with holes to allow you to self-water your plants via the natural capillary movement of water.

Things we liked
  • 3 bays
  • Durable
  • Shatter-resistant lid
  • Reliable heating
  • Good ventilation
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Grow many plants at once
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
View Prices for this Product

EarlyGrow MPL50035/P Heated Medium Electric Propagator

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This effective heated propagator has a heated tray with an approximate temperature of 16-19 degrees Celsius. The robust and durable plastic injection moulded tray and the shatter-resistant lid means that this propagator will last forever.

It features adjustable ventilation control for air flow and humidity. This means that you can adjust your propagator settings to give your plants the best possible environment to grow in.

This is a medium-sized propagator with the ability to grow a few plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Effective heating
  • Durable
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Good size
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
  • Cable is quite short
View Prices for this Product

Best Air Valve Heated Propagator

EarlyGrow MPL50115/1 Large Shatter Proof Propagator

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This EarlyGrow large propagator features a shatter-proof lid and sides that are UV stabilised and crystal clear to allow you for maximum light to enter via sunlight or growth lights.

This allows you to achieve optimal plant growth. The adjustable ventilation allows you to control the air flow and humidity inside the propagator to give your plants the best possible environment to grow in.

The size of the propagator is quite large and so it is able to house a large number of plants all at once.

Things we liked
  • Large size
  • Good ventilation
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Shatter-proof
Things we didn't like
  • Heating elements not included
View Prices for this Product

Heated Propagator with Air Valve Vent by Thompson & Morgan

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This electric heated propagator comes with a handy adjustable air valve so you can control the humidity and ventilation levels to suit the plants that you’re growing.

The device is made from sturdy, durable PVC plastic that is made to last. The heated elements allow you to create the best environment for seed germination and can ensure better growth for your young plants.

It is a good medium-sized propagator with the ability to house numerous plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Adjustable air valve
  • Made from sturdy PVC plastic
  • Effective heating
  • Good size
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
View Prices for this Product

Best Cutting Heated Propagator

EarlyGrow MPL50034/C/P Heated Electric Propagator

05HeatedPropProduct.jpg

This high-quality three-bay windowsill propagator is made from durable and robust injection moulded plastic and features a shatter-resistant lid. The system is made to last for many years.

The electric heating element allows the soil temperature to reach around 16-19 degrees Celsius. This is perfect for the growth of seeds and cuttings.

The clear lids provide maximum light and the adjustable ventilation allows you to adjust the humidity and air flow according to your plant’s needs.

The individual trays and bays are provided with holes to allow you to self-water your plants via the natural capillary movement of water.

Things we liked
  • 3 bays
  • Durable
  • Shatter-resistant lid
  • Reliable heating
  • Good ventilation
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Grow many plants at once
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
View Prices for this Product

Heated Propagator with Air Valve Vent by Thompson & Morgan

06HeatedPropProduct.jpg

This electric heated propagator comes with a handy adjustable air valve so you can control the humidity and ventilation levels to suit the plants that you’re growing.

The device is made from sturdy, durable PVC plastic that is made to last. The heated elements allow you to create the best environment for seed germination and can ensure better growth for your young plants.

It is a good medium-sized propagator with the ability to house numerous plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Adjustable air valve
  • Made from sturdy PVC plastic
  • Effective heating
  • Good size
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
View Prices for this Product

Best Geopod Heated Propagator

Suttons Geopod Heated Propagator by Sutton Seeds

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With this geopod heated propagator with lights, you can start your seeds even earlier with the help of artificial lighting.

This small propagator is controlled by a thermostat and can be set at any temperature from five degrees Celsius to 30 degrees Celsius.

The nanotech-enhanced reflectors reflect 99.9% of lost light back onto the plants. The included lights have an average of 10,000 hours of battery life so they are very long-lasting.

The intense light and controlled heat inside this propagator makes it the perfect environment for growing new seeds and cuttings that are healthy and happy.

Things we liked
  • Thermostatic controls
  • Nanotech-enhanced reflectors
  • Long-lasting
  • Durable
  • Fast-growing
Things we didn't like
  • Expensive
View Prices for this Product

Best Thermostat Heated Propagator

Stewart Thermostatic Control Electric Propagator

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This thermostatic electric heated plant propagator maintains the average soil temperature of around 18-23 degrees Celsius. This allows you to create the perfect environment for growing plants quickly and healthily.

It features a robust crustal styrene cover that provides optimal clarity and maximum light for your plants.

The adjustable ventilation panels provide the perfect air flow and humidity to suit your plants.

The propagator is a great size for growing multiple plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Ventilation controls
  • Durable
  • Thermostatic control
  • Good size
  • Economical
Things we didn't like
  • Thermostatic control is not adjustable
View Prices for this Product

Best Windowsill Heated Propagator

Garland Electric Heated Windowsill Propagator

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This excellent windowsill unit features three high dome propagators that allow you to grow a variety of different seeds. The heated element provides equal heat to all of the trays.

You can grow a variety of different seedlings with this propagator all at once. The design is very minimalistic and the propagator itself is easy to use.

The aim of this unit is to increase the soil temperature by around 8 degrees Celsius. This provides the optimal soil conditions for growing your new seedlings quickly and effectively.

The tops of each dome also feature an adjustable air vent so you can control the air flow and ventilation accordingly.

Things we liked
  • 3 separate domes
  • Grow a variety of seeds
  • Minimalistic design
  • Easy to use
  • Ventilation controls
Things we didn't like
  • No temperature controls
View Prices for this Product

EarlyGrow MPL50034/C/P Heated Electric Propagator

10HeatedPropProduct.jpg

This high-quality three-bay windowsill propagator is made from durable and robust injection moulded plastic and features a shatter-resistant lid. The system is made to last for many years.

The electric heating element allows the soil temperature to reach around 16-19 degrees Celsius. This is perfect for the growth of seeds and cuttings.

The clear lids provide maximum light and the adjustable ventilation allows you to adjust the humidity and air flow according to your plant’s needs.

The individual trays and bays are provided with holes to allow you to self-water your plants via the natural capillary movement of water.

Things we liked
  • 3 bays
  • Durable
  • Shatter-resistant lid
  • Reliable heating
  • Good ventilation
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Grow many plants at once
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
View Prices for this Product

Best Large Heated Propagator

Garland Extra Large High Dome Electric Heated Propagator

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This large electric propagator is the perfect environment for growing a variety of seedlings and cuttings.

All of the components are injection moulded in rigid plastic to ensure that the unit remains durable and can be used for many years.

The growing tray is an ideal drip or irrigation tray for smaller seed trays or pots and the clear cover provides a full 15cm of height clearance.

The size of this unit means that you can grow a lot of plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Large unit
  • Durable
  • Long-lasting
  • Perfect for growing a lot of plants
  • Economical
Things we didn't like
  • Bulky
  • No heating control
View Prices for this Product

EarlyGrow MPL50115/1 Large Shatter Proof Propagator

12HeatedPropProduct.jpg

This EarlyGrow large propagator features a shatter-proof lid and sides that are UV stabilised and crystal clear to allow you for maximum light to enter via sunlight or growth lights.

This allows you to achieve optimal plant growth. The adjustable ventilation allows you to control the air flow and humidity inside the propagator to give your plants the best possible environment to grow in.

The size of the propagator is quite large and so it is able to house a large number of plants all at once.

Things we liked
  • Large size
  • Good ventilation
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Shatter-proof
Things we didn't like
  • Heating elements not included
View Prices for this Product

Stewart Large Heated Propagator

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This large heated propagator features insulation beneath the carbon heating mat and maintains the compost temperature at 15-20 degrees Celsius.

The heater is very economical and designed to last a very long time. The large size of this propagator means that you can grow many plants at once within this one unit.

The adjustable ventilation controls on the top of the unit allow you to create the perfect level of air flow and humidity within the propagator to suit the needs of your plants.

Things we liked
  • Insulation underneath
  • Maintains a constant temperature
  • Easy to use
  • Ventilation controls
  • Large size
  • Grow many plants at once
Things we didn't like
  • Bulky
  • Heat is not adjustable
View Prices for this Product

Best Heated Propagator with Lights

Suttons Geopod Heated Propagator by Sutton Seeds

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With this geopod heated propagator you can start your seeds even earlier with the help of artificial lighting. This small propagator is controlled by a thermostat and can be set at any temperature from five degrees Celsius to 30 degrees Celsius.

The Nanotech-enhanced reflectors reflect 99.9% of lost light back onto the plants. The included lights have an average of 10,000 hours of battery life so they are very long-lasting.

The intense light and controlled heat inside this propagator makes it the perfect environment for growing new seeds and cuttings that are healthy and happy.

Things we liked
  • Thermostatic controls
  • Nanotech-enhanced reflectors
  • Long-lasting
  • Durable
  • Fast-growing
Things we didn't like
  • Expensive
View Prices for this Product

Best Heated Propagator for Beginners

EarlyGrow MPL50035/P Heated Medium Electric Propagator

15HeatedPropProduct.jpg

This effective heated propagator has a heated tray with an approximate temperature of 16-19 degrees Celsius. The robust and durable plastic injection moulded tray and the shatter-resistant lid means that this propagator will last forever.

It features adjustable ventilation control for air flow and humidity. This means that you can adjust your propagator settings to give your plants the best possible environment to grow in.

This is a medium-sized propagator with the ability to grow a few plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Effective heating
  • Durable
  • Adjustable ventilation
  • Good size
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
  • Cable is quite short
View Prices for this Product

Heated Propagator with Air Valve Vent by Thompson & Morgan

07HeatedPropProduct.jpg

This electric heated propagator comes with a handy adjustable air valve so you can control the humidity and ventilation levels to suit the plants that you’re growing.

The device is made from sturdy, durable PVC plastic that is made to last. The heated elements allow you to create the best environment for seed germination and can ensure better growth for your young plants.

It is a good medium-sized propagator with the ability to house numerous plants at once.

Things we liked
  • Adjustable air valve
  • Made from sturdy PVC plastic
  • Effective heating
  • Good size
Things we didn't like
  • Requires electricity
View Prices for this Product

What to Consider Before Buying a Heated Propagator

There are several things you may need to consider when purchasing a heated propagator.

Below is a list of the things that you might want to think about when choosing the right one for you:

Cost

As you can see from our list above, there are many different types of heated propagator and they all come at different costs. Some propagators are much more expensive than others.

It’s a good idea to have a budget in mind before you start searching for a heated propagator so that you don’t fall into any traps of overspending.

Size

Heated propagators come in a huge range of different sizes. If you have an idea of where you’re going to put your heated propagator, then you will probably have an idea of how small or large the propagator you choose needs to be.

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If you’re planning on growing many plants at once, then you will most likely need a large propagator. However, you must ensure that you have the room for it before you place your purchase.

Features

Some propagators will have additional features that allow you to grow different types of seeds or cuttings. If you know what types of plants you wish to grow and your preferred method, it will be easier for you to determine which features you need to look out for when finding the right propagator to buy.

FAQs

When do you remove seedlings from a heated propagator?

You should remove the seedlings from the propagator as soon as the first set of true leaves have emerged. They should be transported into small pots or trays filled with rich compost.

When should you sow tomato seeds in a heated propagator?

Due to the heat from the propagator, you can sow tomato seeds earlier than usual. It is usually best in the spring or summer as the growths will be more likely to survive when you move them out of the propagator.

Should I be able to feel warmth in the soil?

You won’t be able to feel the warmth in the soil unless your temperature is set to above 30 degrees Celsius. This temperature is too high for most seedlings to grow so in the majority of cases, you won’t be able to feel the warmth in the soil.

What should I do about the condensation in my propagator?

It’s very normal for condensation to appear in your propagator, particularly after watering. If the condensation is quite heavy then it might be worth wiping some of it away to stop it from becoming too humid inside.

What is the best soil for propagation?

The soil in your propagator should be light and fluffy but it should firm down without compacting. The soil should be able to retain moisture without becoming too sodden.

Sources

  1. https://www.greenhousesensation.co.uk/advantages-of-an-electric-propagator
  2. https://www.rattandirect.co.uk/blog/use-heated-propagator
  3. http://glallotments.co.uk/propagator.html
  4. https://www.greenhousesensation.co.uk/cuttings-propagation-faq
  5. https://www.lovethegarden.com/uk-en/article/sowing-seeds-indoors
  6. https://www.tomatogrowing.co.uk/html/growing-tomatoes-from-seed.html
  7. https://www.garden4less.co.uk/article/common-propagator-problems