Wednesday, March 17, 2010

~Starting Plants From Seed 2010~

 On Saturday, I was able to steal away some time and get my seeds planted! I decided to pot up all of my large variety tomatoes, some of the other two tomatoes varieties, green peppers, impaiens, and wave petunias. I started 72 cells (on the left), and 30 CowPots = 102 plants (hopefully!)
 I have pouring over all the information on seeds starting that I can lately and these are some helpful hints I have learned.
* You must use a soil that states "Seed Starting Mix". I can attest to having a failed attempt last year with my seeds because I thought...soil was soil...not true in this case.
* First fill your cells or pots close to the top leaving about an 1/8 inch.
* I then watered them well. You want the soil very moist, but not soggy!
*Put your seed on then according to the planting directions you might need to sprinkle on a little more soil. In some cases you leave the seed alone and they germinate without being covered at all.
*I then used a spare water bottle to spray the top to moisten it just a bit.
* Cover your cells/pots with their dome tops. If you do not have a "dome system", you can use plastic wrap and that will serve the same purpose. The reason it just to keep the moisture in and create a humid green house effect to allow seeds to germinate.
* According to all my seeds, they need a 70-80 degree environment to germinate. I put them on top of our corn stove where they can be warm and away from little hands. (I still had the "Don't touch mommy's seeds unless you want me to turn into VERY MEAN mommy talk!")
*You can buy heating mats that are made to put under your domes. I use a heating pad I already have on hand and move it around throughout the day.
* Once the seed sprouts up out of the soil a bit, it is time to remove the cover. This is important for  a couple reasons. The plants now need LIGHT (about 12-14 hours), and they need circulation. Also be sure to give them a good watering either with you spray bottle, or water them from the bottom (lifting out a cell block, placing water in the tray then put the cell block back in. This allows the plants to soak up the water from the roots up and doesn't damage your little sprouts.
* Put your new sprout in sunlight for 12-14 each day. Be sure it is NOT DIRECT sunlight. Direct sunlight will dry out the sprouts and "burn" them. If you are in my situation and have no south facing windows that you can place your sprouts in, you need a grow light. I asked for mine for my B-day last year. I ordered the light fixture HERE. I ordered grow light bulbs that are made especially for growing plants from seed HERE. I have read that you can use any florescent light and use a combination of bulbs for this same effect (although I can not attest to how effective this is since I have never done it this way.)
*Continue to check the soil each day for dryness. Simply use your finger to check it.
 Here they are all potted up! Nice and cozy on the the hard part....WAIT!!! Once they sprout (within the next week or so) I will move them down to the basement under the grow light.
 Well here are the CowPots I told you I ordered earlier this year. I saw a program on how these little pots are made and was totally fascinated. Yes, I know it doesn't take much sometimes! Made with 100% Cow manure...without the! You plant your seed in these beauties and then when it's time to put them in the garden you just plop them right in. TWELVE weeks after you planted your seeds in them they started to naturally decompose and fertilize your plants for you! Lovin' that!
If your interested in getting some for your garden they are $6.99 for a 12 pack...making them .58 each
Just from the reading I have done I have read they are better than peat pots. Again I can not testify to this, I can only pass on what I read as far as reviews that customers did on their website.

Just a little thing to think about....If you order these items from Amazon you can usually take advantage of FREE shipping if you spend over $25! I LOVE FREE SHIPPING!

(I am not being paid to advertise for this company, I just wanted to share my find with you.)



Candi said...

What a great deal! (I found you via Just for the Joy of it) I saw your recent post about gardening and thought you might want to join us on Thursdays for our How Does Your Garden Grow? meme.

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