The most sustainable and cost effective way to grow flowers and vegetables is to start your own from seed, as long as you successfully get them from see to ground. No one likes to put in a lot of work and get back nothing but headaches. but those are not the only benefits.
Even if you never have done this before you will find the process easy and exciting if you follow a few simple procedures. For some great seed starting videos check these out, too.
Pick vegetables and flowers that grow well in your region. If you are unsure, check with your local extension agent or a certified garden specialist.
Choose a light, fine textured starting medium. Potting soil is too heavy and rich. You can buy seed starting medium. If you make your own, look for alternatives to peat moss for greater sustainability and lower acidity. Perlite and vermiculite are excellent, lightweight materials.
One word on recycling containers. Make sure to soak them in a bleach solution of 1 tablespoon bleach to one gallon of water overnight to insure a sterile start for your seeds.
Have a warm, bright spot to start your seeds, or have a heat source and a grow light available.
Start the seeds so that they are ready to plant no sooner than the last frost date. Every seed pack has a map on the back to give you this information. to correspond to the last frost date. Starting sooner means you will have to transplant all those seedlings, which is a lot of extra work if you are starting more than one pack of seeds.
Moisten your starting medium before planting. Don’t let your soil dry out—ever, but too much water will cause your seedlings to rot. Evenly moist, not wet, is the key.
Plant only a few seeds in each container. If several sprout, choose the biggest and strongest to keep and thin the rest.
Let the plants harden off before you plant. When it’s warm enough and the seedlings are well established take them to sunny sheltered spots to get used to the outdoors. The moving air, outdoor temperatures and daylight will help your seedlings get ready for transplanting.
Here are some good videos that will give you some additional pointers for successfully starting your seeds indoors. Each one gives a different take on how to get going. As you will see there is not just one way to start your seeds. Find your style, and keeping the above points in mind, you will successfully start your seeds indoors.
An Excellent Beginner Step by Step How to—
Basic Getting Started:
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