Extend Your Growing by Starting Seeds Indoors
Are you anxiously awaiting gardening season to arrive? Flipping through your favorite seed catalogs while making your seed wish list. You can extend the growing season by a few weeks by starting your seeds indoors!
Of coarse, not all seeds do well when started indoors. Check the back of your seed packet for info on whether to start indoors or direct sow. Then, your ready to start gathering supplies for seed starting.
Supplies For Starting Seeds
- Cell trays – come with a plastic dome lid which creates a greenhouse affect that will make your seeds happy, giving them heat and humidity.
- Seed Starter Mix – different from soil, this is a germination medium which holds water well ensuring a higher success rate.
- Heat Mat (Optional) – Placing a heat mat under the tray can increase your germination time and success rate. This one’s optional. It can help germination, but not necessary.
- Grow light or a Sunny location – If your house is like ours, real estate in a sunny location is pretty much non-existent. Grow light to the rescue! Otherwise, your seedlings will become leggy and you don’t want that (we’ll talk about leggy plants some other time).
- Label Tag – To quote one of my English teachers, “A short pencil is better than a long memory.” Very true! Especially, when it comes to labeling your plants. You can order label tags, or what I’ve done in the past is use an old mini blind. Cut off sections to desired length and label with a sharpie.
For those of you starting a large amount of seeds, I have used shallow storage bins to start seeds (the bins that fit under your bed). Place your seed starter mix in the bin, make a line of holes, and add seeds. The bins work just as good as the cell trays and they’re perfect for starting a bulk amount of plants! Wrap the bin with plastic, like garden plastic or saranwrap, to create a greenhouse affect.
Steps to Starting Seeds:
- Place 1/4 inch of water in tray
- Place cells in tray and fill with seed starter mix
- Using your finger, or pencil, make a hole in each cell
- Place 1 seed per hole, two if your seeds are older to ensure germination
- Label Seeds
- Cover seeds with starter mix
- Water top slowly or with a spray bottle
- Place plastic lid on tray
- Place under Grow Light or in a sunny location
Check your seeds daily. You want the starter mix moist, but not soggy. Once your seeds have sprouted, you will want to turn your trays if the seedlings look like they’re reaching/stretching for light.
May your gardening journey this year fill your pantry and your bellies! Let us know in the comments what you’re planting this year!
If you’re interested in more valuable gardening content check out Food Security Series! We want to encourage you on your food growing journey. NOW’S the time to take control of your food security! See ya there.
Thanks for stopping by!
Talk to you soon,