So you got your seeds in the mail, you’re so excited … but not quite sure where to start? Still pondering what seeds to buy?Wondering what the difference between hybrid and heirlooms?Well first think of the space you are working with and plan accordingly.
|Since you are
ready to plant, hopefully your soil has been amended
properly with organic matter or you are starting your
garden with an organic soil mix (we would recommend
anything that is OMRI certified). Remember, healthy soil
= healthy plants, everything begins in the soil. If you
have not had your soil tested and are not sure what may
be in your soil, we recommend raised beds and/or
containers. More info on container gardens coming soon,
so stay tuned to my next post Following the Sun –
Container Gardening 101.
Some of your varieties will grow horizontally, think squash, while
others grow vertically, think peas. Taking this into
consideration is key to a successful garden. I would recommend
finding an unused journal or notebook that you can designate as
your garden journal. This is key to help you remember where you
planted things in past seasons. To keep your soil healthy it is
important to rotate your crops, if you are planting heavy
feeders. Rotating can also prevent diseases from being
transferred from one plant to another. Our seed packets are a
wealth of information and will inform you if varieties are heavy
feeders or not.
Now its time to plant! If you are direct seeding, planting in
the soil, you will want to make sure there is ample space
between everything (each variety needs an allotted amount of
space). Don’t be too paranoid and use a ruler in the garden;
gardening is more organic than that, no pun intended. If you
over-seed, you can eat your mistakes, but crowding your
vegetables can also compromise their nutrient intake and can
ultimately stunt your crops. There is a fine balance so just
have fun! There are some seeds that can be broadcasted, instead
of being planted individually. As those seedlings start coming
up and growing their first “seed leaves,” start to rogue (pluck
out) the weaker ones. As the leaves of the seedlings begin to
start touching, rogue those out as well, over-crowding is a
disadvantage when the roots and the growth of the plant become
|Make sure that you have followed
the directions on each seed packet, about how deep
each variety should be planted. Each seed packet is
choke-full of great info that will help guide you to
yielding a great harvest!
After all your seeds are tucked away in the earth, remember to sprinkle them generously with water. This is what will awaken your seeds, this is where magic happens! The soil must continue to stay moist for germination to occur, this means watering every day. Should the soil dry up, you may risk having lost those seeds. Remember you are nurturing this tiny seedling to emerge into the world, it needs your love and care … and even your song, so don’t be shy! If you are starting some of your seeds indoors, don’t forget to harden-off your seeds before planting them in the soil or moving them outside, that means exposing your seedlings to colder air little by little. Some folks use a cold frame, which is also great solution.
Continue to nurture your plants until the completion of your
harvest. Plan accordingly if you plan on saving your seeds. You
may want to grow extra plants, so you can enjoy some of the
harvest and save the seeds. Use your Basic Seed Saving
book that we provided for you for the best information on how to
properly save your seeds.
Storing your Seeds
Remember seeds, are living
embryos, they should not be left in a hot place, ie: your car or
a hot garage. As long as the seeds are being stored in a cool
and dry place, they will be fine. We recommend keeping them
stored in the Mylar envelop the come in.
Try to keep them out of
direct sun and
moisture when you are in the garden planting. If you
choose to store them in the refrigerator, they can last from 4 –
10 years (depending on each seed’s viability).
If you do choose to use the fridge as your seed storage
facility, make sure that the zip lock part of the envelope is
sealed. When you do use the seeds, just let the Mylar bag sit
out at room temperature until for a couple of hours, to let the
seeds get to room temperature, to avoid moisture condensation
forming in the seeds inside.
Original article can be found