Organic Gardening…Sow What?

Starting plants from seed has many practical benefits. You save money, get a head start on the growing season, choose from varieties far beyond those locally available, and can control the organic environment from start to finish. You also get to experience the joy of watching a seemingly lifeless seed sprout into a living plant.

 seed sowing

Varieties such as tomatoes, peppers, onions, perennials and some annual ornamentals really benefit from an early start indoors.  Understanding when to start seeds indoors takes some backward thinking. Find out the average date of the last frost in your area and the number of weeks before that date you should start a particular seed. The number of weeks varies and is listed on the back of each seed package. Then count back on the calendar from the average last frost date.

 

As a general rule, start most seeds six to eight weeks before your average last frost date. If you start seeds too early, you'll have to keep the seedlings inside too long, and they will be weak by transplant time.  Ready to grow?  Check out these simple indoor seed sowing tips.

 

Containers

Almost any container can be used to start seeds including milk containers or egg cartons.  I chose fiber pots because they are the most biodegradable way to start seeds indoors.  When it's time to transplant, set pot and all right into the soil! To retain soil moisture until the seeds germinate, cover the container with a clear lid.  Remove the cover immediately when you see the first seedling sprout.

 

Soil

Invest in high quality organic seed starting mix.  I typically use growing pellets.  Place one pellet in each cell and add warm water, the growing media expands in seconds, and no mess (plus kids love it!).  The pellets are an excellent soil alternative derived from coconut fiber–a renewable resource.

 

Water

Seedlings must be kept moist but not soggy.  If they completely dry out just once, the seedlings will die.  On the other hand, if they're too soggy, fungal problems can occur.

 

Light

Insufficient light is the most common mistake that rookie seed sowers fall victim.  Long, tall, skinny seedlings which eventually fall over and die are the result of not enough light.  Seedlings crave 14-16 hours of light per day.

 

Hardening Off

Harden the seedlings off for about a week by taking containers outside and placing in a filtered sun/shade location away from harsh winds during the day.  Gradually increase time outdoors and then plant them in their new "digs".

 

Ongoing Benefits

Nurturing the plants as they grow is physically engaging and provides stress relief.  The best reward is cooking with the "fruits" of your own labor.  Sow…get growing!

 

Learn more about Stacy Walters, RKT at www.fittogarden.com

 

More articles by Stacy

 

Related posts:

Wellness with @IvyJoeva: What's Your Season (Video)
20 FREE Recipes & Home Life Kindle eBook Downloads
ABC News Warns About Spray Tans—But We Warned You First!

21 Comments

  • It’s an awesome article in favor of all the online users; they will take
    benefit from it I am sure.

  • Hi there, I check your new stuff like every week.
    Your humoristic style is witty, keep it up!

  • Hey just wanted to give you a quick heads up and let you know a few of
    the pictures aren’t loading properly. I’m not sure
    why but I think its a linking issue. I’ve tried it in two
    different browsers and both show the same outcome.

  • As soon as I discovered this site I went on reddit to share some of the love with them.

  • Oh my goodness! Incredible article dude! Thank you, However I am having problems with your RSS.
    I don’t know the reason why I can’t subscribe to it. Is there anybody else having identical RSS
    problems? Anyone who knows the answer can you kindly respond?
    Thanx!!

  • Hi there, after reading this awesome post i am too cheerful to share my knowledge here with colleagues.

  • Article writing is also a fun, if you be acquainted with afterward you can write or else it is difficult to
    write.

  • Appreciate the recommendation. Will try it out.

  • I have been exploring for a bit for any high quality articles
    or blog posts in this sort of area . Exploring in Yahoo I ultimately stumbled upon this
    web site. Reading this info So i am glad to express that I have a
    very good uncanny feeling I discovered just what I needed.
    I most indubitably will make sure to don?t forget this web site and provides it a look on a continuing basis.

  • I’m extremely impressed together with your writing abilities as well as with the structure for your
    blog. Is this a paid subject matter or did you modify it yourself?
    Either way keep up the excellent quality writing, it’s rare to
    look a nice weblog like this one today..

  • As the admin of this web page is working, no uncertainty very soon it will be famous, due to its feature contents.

  • Very descriptive article, I loved that bit. Will there be a part 2?

  • Great article! We are linking to this particularly great post on our website.
    Keep up the great writing.

  • Great post! We are linking to this great post
    on our site. Keep up the good writing.

  • Woah! I’m really enjoying the template/theme of this website.
    It’s simple, yet effective. A lot of times it’s difficult to
    get that “perfect balance” between usability and visual appearance.
    I must say you have done a excellent job with this.
    In addition, the blog loads extremely fast for me on Opera.

    Outstanding Blog!

  • Undeniably believe that which you said. Your favorite justification seemed to be on the net the easiest thing to be aware of.
    I say to you, I definitely get irked while people think about worries that they plainly do
    not know about. You managed to hit the nail upon the top as well
    as defined out the whole thing without having side-effects
    , people can take a signal. Will probably be back to
    get more. Thanks

  • Greetings from Carolina! I’m bored to tears at work so I decided to check out your blog on my iphone during lunch break.
    I love the info you provide here and can’t wait to take a look when I get home.
    I’m amazed at how quick your blog loaded on my mobile ..
    I’m not even using WIFI, just 3G .. Anyhow, excellent blog!

  • Nice post. I was checking continuously this blog and I’m impressed! Very helpful info specifically the last part :) I care for such info much. I was seeking this certain information for a very long time. Thank you and good luck.|

  • Great beat ! I wish to apprentice at the same time as you amend your website,
    how can i subscribe for a weblog web site? The account aided me a acceptable
    deal. I had been tiny bit acquainted of this your broadcast offered vibrant transparent concept

  • Hi! I could have sworn I’ve been to this blog before but
    after going through a few of the articles I realized it’s new to me.

    Nonetheless, I’m definitely pleased I came across it and I’ll be bookmarking it and checking back frequently!

  • Currently it looks like Drupal is the preferred blogging platform out there right now. (from what I’ve read) Is that what you are using on your blog?|