Monday, March 23, 2009

Starting Seeds From Scratch

As promised, I started some seeds indoors this weekend. I had Supplies to start seeds from scratchcome across a tray in my parent's basement a few weeks ago, so I brought it home with me. Beside representing the ocean in my brother's science project 10 years ago, it was unused, so I didn't even need to purchase more pellets or peat trays.

I picked up several seed packets from Home Depot. They were $1.69 each, which seemed reasonable to me. I did come across a Home Hardware flyer when I got home that advertised $0.49 seeds, so you may want to head there this week if you want to save a dollar or so. I bought mostly veggies, as well as basil and oregano. In hindsight, I perhaps should have bought more herbs as they grow well in containers, and I am not sure if I will get my garden done or not for the veggies. This may have to be my motivation! I also bought a bag of potting soil.
Seeds planted and covered with thin soil layer
1. Soak the peat trays in water if they are dry. I read somewhere that dry peat will take the water from the soil and plants if they are no moist enough, so I soaked these first.

2. Fill sections half with potting soil. Sprinkle in seeds and cover lightly with soil. Most seeds do not need a lot of soil cover (5-15mm), so be careful not to plant the seeds too deep. Peat pellets work great, as they expand once moist, and then you just stick Seed trays labelledyour thumb in to make a hole, place the seed in and smooth over. Also, remember to label your seeds, so you remember what you planted!

3. Water well. I put water in the base of my tray and sprinkled over the peat container. Cover with plastic and place in a bright area, AWAY from direct sunlight.

If the containers are moist enough, they should 'self water'. This means that you will likely see lots of condensation on the plastic cover.

Now, it's just a waiting game to see if anything sprouts!Seed trays set in lighted area, out of direct light

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