Monday, April 26, 2010

Starting Plants from Seeds - BTSH Around The House Tip of the Week

A few weeks ago I talked about getting your yard ready for spring. While it is a great time to rake, clean up the debris of winter, and cultivate soil for our gardens, it may not be wise to put out new plants just yet. There is still some risk of frost, therefore it is best to wait for a couple of weeks. You can however get a head start by planting your seeds indoors, and allowing them to grow for a couple of weeks indoors before transplanting.

Tools You’ll Need
Seeds of your choice
Peat Moss Pots
Plant Marker Posts
Large Container for Pots—I used an aluminum roasting pan
Small Watering Can
Plant Food (optional)

Getting Started
All plants will have somewhat varying instructions for planting. These should be printed on the back of the packages of seeds. Be sure to read through these carefully before you begin. This year I chose to plant beans, peas, carrots, cucumbers, and rosemary. I noted when reading through that peas are actually safe to plant directly outdoors, prior to last frost. All others were planted in pots according to their directions.

Next, decide how many pots of each seed you wish to do. Using your sharpie, label the peat moss pot to easily identify the plants later.

Fill your peat moss pots with soil. Plant seeds according to the package directions. Top with soil as needed. Place pots in the container you’ve chosen (as I mentioned, I simply picked up an aluminum roasting pan and arranged my pots in there). Lightly water the seeds, and place indoors in the sunniest location.

Caring for Your Seeds
Water your seeds daily. After a few days, the seeds will start to germinate. Once you start to see some signs of plant-life, you can use some plant food if you like. Allow a couple of weeks for the plants to grow to a reasonable size before moving outdoors, ensuring that the chances of frost are minimal. The beauty of the peat moss pots is that these can be planted directly into the soil, no transferring required. Plant according to directions on the seed packages again, careful to lay out the plants based on available sunlight and their needs. For plants that grow into the ground, such as carrots, poke a few holes in the bottom of the pot to allow it to break through easily. Continue to water regularly. By summer, you’ll have a thriving, healthy garden!

Written by Shauna Lynn, Beyond The Stage Homes

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