Grow From seed
A lot of gardeners shy away from growing from seed, for many different reasons. usually it's the fear of the seeds not coming to life. It's so much easier to go to a buy ready made nursery plants, then to grow them yourself from the off. Although, it's so much more rewarding cultivating plants from seed and cuttings, then buying from stores and transplanting.
Yes, growing from seed is a process and a learning curve, one that is so worth the windy bend! It gets much easier trust me, especially if you know what your seeds need. Some seeds prefer to be started outdoors, such as cucumbers and milkweeds others are more suited started indoors, like tomatoes and basil.
Some seedling don't like to be transplanted nasturtiums, are a great example. They really grow much better when sown in the spot where they will grow for the season. Nearly all vegetables fair well when transplanted. How will you know all of this if when you are starting out? Seed packets have instructions on the back of the packet. These include, when and where to sow the seeds, and duration time for germination. Simply follow the directions to the best of your ability and you should be good. Don't expect all the seeds to germinate as they won't. Not even the strongest growers have an 100% success rate.
A good rule of thumb is to sow a few extra insurance seeds when you're first starting out. This will help compensate for any mistakes, transplanting mishaps and seedling deaths. Once the seeds are sown and germinating, relax and let nature take it's course. If you anxiously worry about your seeds and keep telling yourself they are not going to grow, you will not enjoy the process. I set them and forget them.
grow from seed Mindset
I'm actually quite haphazard and non pulsed, when I sow seeds. I assume all my seeds will grow and I don't for a minute think that they won't germinate. I'm also grateful that in a tray of 12 seeds for some unknown reason, only one germinates. At least I got the one to strike, I take the lesson from the experience to improve on my results for next time. Don't sweat it.
Grow from seed tips
1. Sowing seeds outside directly into the soil or into a potting mixture, you could benefit from covering the seeds with peat moss, as it's a lighter medium than both, garden and potting soil, making it easier for seeds to sprout. Don't over cover your seeds, it'll take longer for them to sprout or have them not sprout at all.
2. Some seeds need to be soaked, scratched or sprouted before planting in soil, this process is called stratification. Make sure you check if your seeds need any preparation before sowing. Start seeds indoors 4 - 6 weeks before the last frost date, that will give you a heads start to the spring season to come. For fall planting, I would start seeds 14 weeks before the first frost date. These can be sown in or outdoors
3. A seedling is ready to be transplanted once it has 2 leaves on it. When moving seedling from indoors to outdoors in the spring, I always give it a week after the last frosts to make my move. That way you have assurance that the temperatures won’t hike low to freezing point and damage your seedlings
4. When growing directly in the ground, make sure to space seeds accordingly. If you sow too many extra seeds in one spot and if they all sprout, you will have serious overcrowding issues that take up precious gardening time to fix. One or two assurance seeds are enough.
5. Growing from seed indoors, in a controlled environment where the temperature and atmosphere tends to stay the same, increases the odds of seedling survival. Take advantage of cultivating your seedlings indoors and revel in the convenience. There aren't any unforeseen elements like strong winds, heavy rains or predators to consider.
6. Practice using organic open- pollinated and heirloom seeds opposed to non organic seeds. I always collect my flowers and fruit that have gone to seed during the season, to use the following year. Read my post here about the different types of seeds available on the market today and why learning to grow from seed, is such an important part of our evolution.
7. Using small pots or eggshells are a good way to grow seedlings. To transplant simply crush the eggshell and plant, much easier than removing a seedling from a pot. Planting multiple seedlings in one pot is tricky. When it comes time to separate the seedlings, fatalities, tearing and errors can occur. It's the most vulnerable time for any seedling so make it easier on you and plant seeds separately.
8. A convenient, great way to cultivate your edibles grown from seed is, with a vego - garden 32" inch raised garden bed. There's no bending or kneeling involved and transplanting from hip height makes it easier to get planting right. Buy your vego - garden raised bed here.