One thing I enjoy about starting seeds indoors is that it's quiet time, and my mind wanders to things I enjoy thinking about. I was working on seeds yesterday, and it came to mind how some years in the past I was such a sloppy gardener. I didn't take the care like I do now and sometimes I yielded the same results, as if I had put more care into the garden, and other years my sloppy gardening showed in how my garden produced. As I picked each seed up with tweezers and lovingly placed it in the small hole that I had in the soil, I felt like I was adding a secret ingredient to each plant. Like cooking, you can add plenty of the love ingredient into your garden.
Have you ever just thrown your garden together at the last minute, without any care? I have, and sadly more than just once. It's a hard fact to admit, that I have really just done the bare minimum before and when you think about it, growing vegetables is really a very important job. When you are growing food to feed your family, you want the best yield and the biggest, healthiest vegetables.
I used to use the plot method to grow our garden and I found it to be a lot of work and never enjoyed it like I do with raised beds. I find having raised beds look pretty and organized, which match my personality and they are easy to maintain with weeding. I just love walking out to my garden, during its peak growing time, and seeing all the pretty plants bearing fruit and filling my fenced garden with beauty. I could stay out there all day tinkering and watering and deadheading. When I have a plot garden, I just move up and down the rows thinking about all the work that I have to get finished and all the weeding I need to do.
In the past, I didn't start my seeds indoors. I either sowed seed directly into the garden when the ground was warm enough and I bought plants to put in place to save me the trouble and to speed up the process. I feel like I have missed out on a lot of the satisfaction of starting seeds. There is a feeling of satisfaction when you start your plants from seed and watch them grow from beginning to end. I just feel accomplished when I put the extra time and work into my garden by using seed. I suppose age is wisdom and as I get older I want to put more care and work into the plants I grow, and the food we eat. Do you get a feeling of satisfaction when you use seed and start your plants and watch them grow?
I'm probably not the only one that has practiced sloppy gardening in the past, and I am sure I won't be the last, but I am happy that I finally came around and realized what I have been missing all these years . Gardening is one of those hobbies that you grow along with, learning along the way and finding out what works and what doesn't for you. That is what I like about gardening, that no matter what mistakes you make one year, you learn from them and can turn things around the next. It's ever changing and get better at it every year.
How do you start seeds indoors? I like to spread out at the dining room table and gather my supplies together. I have my warm water in my watering pitcher, my soil, scissors, masking tape, a sharpie, seed containers, seeds, and a spoon. I mix up my organic starter soil in a bucket so it's easy to fill the containers. I like the six cell seed containers because I can reuse them a few times before they wear out. I have used toilet paper and paper towel rolls wrapped in newspaper so they will degrade in the soil and I have used store bought peat cups that you just just plant cup and all. For me, I really like the six cell cups, and they work well for me.
I start to put the soil into the seed containers. I just dip it into the bucket and scoop one side and turn and scoop the other side, using the spoon to level off the soil.
I label each container with a piece of masking tape that I write what I have planted and the date that I've planted it. Knowing the date you plant the seed helps to know when to calculate germination. Most seed packets will give you a germination time-frame. Also, if you plant seeds on more than one day, you know which days you started your seeds for each plant.
I then get a piece of white paper to pour my seeds on so that I can see them if they are tiny and black. Some seeds, like squash and cucumber, are big enough you don't need tweezers or white paper. However, some seeds like cabbage or lettuce or carrots are tiny and you really need to use the white paper and tweezers so you don't waste your seed.
Using tweezers, I pick up each tiny seed and place it into the small hole I've poked into the soil with the end of a pencil. I always put two seeds per hole, to ensure one of them will germinate.
Once I get the six cell container planted with seed, I water the container with warm water. The weather is cold usually when I start seeds indoors, so it helps the seed to have warm water to start the germination process.
Afterward, I place my trays on the shelves of my greenhouse that I bought from Tractor Supply to keep indoors, and I placed the grow light on top to help the seeds get the proper lighting to grow. I use a brooder lamp and a screw in grow light bulb that I bought from Lowes. I like the brooder lamp because it has a clamp that I can clamp on the top bar and aim it down into the greenhouse.
After I get them all planted and set up I just check them every day and mist them with a spray bottle full of water. This keeps the soil damp. I get so excited when I see the beginning of life and the seed sprouting. It's so fun to know you are starting a life cycle and you will reap the rewards later when your vegetables or flowers grow.
I hope you will share your tips on starting seeds and how you get them growing or if you have questions about starting seeds because you are new with the process, please ask in the comments. I am sure anyone with any experience, including myself, would be happy to help you get started.
Connect with us:
Hi! My name is Jaymie and I'm married to my best friend and have three children. We live on our hobby farm in the north Georgia mountains and love it!
All work on this site is copyrighted. Please do not steal our content. We will gladly grant permission to use our photos and content if you ask and give credit. Do not copy posts in their entirety. You may share a link and an excerpt, but give credit. You may pin images from my blog, or share them on your website. However, please give credit. Provide a link back to my site and include the following line in your caption: Photo courtesy of www.pierceponderosa.com.