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Indoor Seed Starting

It’s Spring!

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Time to plant the garden……NOT!

Here in Colorado we know from seasons past, there will be a lot more snow to come.  If you are native to Colorado you probably know that planting before Mother’s Day (Sunday May 8, 2016 – can’t forget mom!) is unheard of.  Well, it’s heard of but you are usually bummed when all your hard work is sitting under 6 inches of heavy wet snow.

If you are like me and enjoy eating home grown food from your garden before summer ends, you will need to start your seeds indoors.

It’s time to get started!  Try to allow 6-8 weeks of indoor growing before planting outside.  This gives the plants time to establish roots and become strong before moving to the great outdoors.

The best seeds to start indoors are all varieties of tomatoes, all varieties of peppers, cucumbers, squash, broccoli, watermelon and pumpkins.  I’m sure there are others but these are the foods we enjoy at my house.

In my experience peas, carrots and green beans are better to start in the garden.  The pea plants are a delicate vine and require climbing so they are more temperamental when transplanting .  Green beans sprout quickly so it is easier to start them in the garden.  Carrots are another seedling that doesn’t make sense to transplant.  These three are usually planted in several rows so you would need most of your dining room to start these indoors.  Just doesn’t make sense.  I learned that the hard way.

It is good to start plants in medium sized cups about 12oz.  This way they don’t take up too much room in your house but allow enough room for the roots to grow.

Some people use egg cartons and smaller bathroom sized cups to start their seeds but in my experience, they grow about an inch and die unless you move them to larger pots.  There simply isn’t enough room to establish roots.

The store bought seed starters are fine,  but you will be transfering  them to larger cups well before you are able to move them outside.  So why not start and finish in the same container?

Buy the cups in bulk as well as the potting soil.  It is good to buy the soil with plant food built right in.  Once transferred to the garden they live in my home made compost.  I will be posting on compost later.

Make sure you have a bright sunny table they can stay on and be easily rotated for even growing.

Labeling your plants always seems to be a chore.  I find that having each cup clearly marked is very helpful when you are ready to plant the garden.  You could use different colored cups or cups with different designs.

imageI like to use Shish Kabob skewers.  Simply color code the plants by marking about 1-2 inches of the flat end of the skewers and place right into the cup.  Each color represents a different plant.  imageMake yourself a master key so each tray of cups is easily identifiable.  When I move the plants to the garden I use the stick to mark the plant in the garden.

If you water every other day they grow into happy little seedlings and will be ready to live fruitful lives in the garden.

I hope you find this helpful and I will be posting more for you soon!

I am looking forward to sharing more garden tips, party ideas, food and wine ideas, family fun and more!

Thanks for reading!  Until next time,  Happy Blogging!

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