Friday, March 25, 2011

Seed Starting Begins

Today I started some of our seeds. I started 8 green peppers,3 thyme,4 marjoram,2 rosemary,and 6 oregano seeds. This year I tried peat pellets instead of soil.
Freshly unwrapped tray with seed packets
I have never tried peat pellets. I took out the ones I was not going to need now. I poured 1/3 cup of warm water per pellet according to the directions.It came out to about 5 cups of water. Once the pots absorbed the water,they grew to about 1-1/2 inches big and the pellets turned darker brown.Peat pellets are thirsty little suckers,but I did have some water left over,so I poured out the excess. I then carefully peeled the top of the netting back,fluffed up the peat a bit,and smoothed it out. I then planted my seeds. 2-3 seeds is recommended,so they can be thinned out to the best plant,but I didn't do that in all the pellets. Just in some of the  herbs.I placed the plastic cover on and brought the tray with the tiny seeds down to the basement.

Peat pellets ready for action!
Right now our set up consists of one basic fluorescent light one ,heating pad (bought at Rite Aid last year) and one timer.( I only have the light on so I could take the photo).Once the plants start sprouting I will have the light on a timer for 14  hours a day. Last year I did 12 hours a day. I think with the extra couple hours of light they will grow better. I know I will not remove the peppers from the heat like I did last year once they start to sprout! Peppers like it warm. We should start to see sprouts within a couple of weeks for the peppers and the herbs. My next seed planting date is April 8. I will be starting broccoli and tomatoes.
Our set up.The first tray looks so lonely!
I have a chart saying what plant is where in the tray,as well as one that has the plant dates,how many seeds I planted, planned sprout dates,actual sprout date,and when they need to go out to be hardened off. I also have started a seed diary so I can refer to it,like I did from last year.

What seeds have you started? What did you learn from previous experience?

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