First seedlings of the year…

For me planning the garden makes the winter more bearable.  It’s snowing right now, not a big storm, but it’s not spring.  So a few weeks ago my husband and I figured out what we needed for seeds this year and got them on order.  It’s like Christmas in January when they come! 🙂

We learned quite a bit last year on what works and what doesn’t for seedlings so hopefully this year we will do really well.  I think we’ve sorted out which seeds need to start now and then to stagger the rest.  We planted our peppers, leeks, bunching onions, broccoli, and Brussels Sprouts.

planting seeds 2 2013

To start we brought out all our trays we had from last year.  Thank goodness they are reusable!  I fill the tray part way with organic seed starter and then water.  I use a spray bottle so there is an even spread of moisture.  You don’t want mud.

planting seeds 3 2013

I don’t want the drier soil to wick away moisture from the seeds.  Then furrows are “drawn” in the soil and the seeds are dropped in.  I try to match the spacing on the package as much as I can.  We’re limited for space in our setup so I want as much to come up as possible.

planting seeds 5 2013

Once the seeds are dropped in they get sprayed again.  Then the soil gets pressed down over them lightly.  Spray again!  Our house is quite dry in the winter time so it’s important that the seeds get the right environment.

planting seeds 6 2013

Pop the clear lid over the tray.  These are great for keeping the moisture and warmth in.

We set up a spot in the back room with grow lights and heating pads.  We learned the hard way last year that the heating pads should be on timers.  Our house runs 55-60F/13-18C and some seeds require soil temps of about 75F/24F.  So we bought heating pads that said they would raise the temps 10-20 degrees.  Perfect we thought.  Until the soil temp shot up to 110F/43C.  Great way to kill seeds!  So there was a false start there.

planting seeds 7 2013

It’s been a week and the broccoli and Brussels Sprouts are coming up!  We also have alfalfa sprouts coming up as well.  🙂

planting seeds 8 2013

Can’t wait for spring!!

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31 thoughts on “First seedlings of the year…

  1. Oh, I used to love growing from seed. Mostly flowers and herbs as the garden I had access to was one large cat litter for the unwanted local cats! I wouldn’t eat anything from it. Although, I used to grow tomatoes in compost bags that were raised and stored so cats couldn’t get near them.

  2. Well done for being so organised, I am still procrastinating over what veg seeds to buy! I do have a lovely new propagator though – so no excuses for the right environment. I hope to have a free evening tomorrow and you have spurred me on to sit down with the catalogues and get on with it, it is fun after all,looking to see what will inspire you for garden then plate in the coming year.

  3. Aw they look so promising! I can’t wait for spring, either…and I can’t wait to see how the seeds turn out!

    – Jonathan

  4. Good for you being so organised! I like the tip about using a water sprayer to avoid the water-logged mud syndrome. Of course, here in Australia we are in opposite seasons. Presently I’m waiting for my green tomatoes to change colour.

  5. I’m weeks away from planting my few seeds but it sure is nice seeing that others are starting. It’s a sure sign that Spring is on the way! You’ve a nice set-up, too. Everything looking great!

  6. Nice that you have sprouts up already. I can’t wait until I can start my seeds in March…can’t plant in the ground in Maine before the end of May because of frost.

    • I’m in the southwest of NH and for some of the plants, like peas, broccoli, brussels sprouts, kale, etc, we need to get them in the ground once the ground is workable. Around April. And they withstand a bit of frost. Peppers, tomatoes, etc need to wait to the end of May for sure! Gotta love the NE weather.

      • I’m probably about an hour away in the seacoast region of New Hampshire. I plant our garden at our summer cottage in Maine instead of at our home in New Hampshire. We usually still have snow on the ground in April up north…wish it was more like home.

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