garden, gardening, gardening tips, peppers, pests, seedlings, seeds, sustainable living, tomatoes
I have planted nearly everything that is going into the ground for the summer season. After I pull up the garlic, I will make that bed home to four more tomato plants, as well as a few more eggplant and possibly another zucchini. That leaves one small bed for the peppers, and that is it!
In my very first post for this blog I announced to the world my commitment to grow exclusively from seed this season, and I am sticking to it. I laid out the things I had learned about starting seeds up to that point. Here is that list:
1. Plant way more than you think you are going to use.
2. Be vigilant about keeping the soil moist.
3. Be prepared for an unexpected warm day. (I lost about 1/3 of my seedlings in one afternoon).
4. Peppers are really hard to start. I am going to try again with the seedling tray on a warmer.
Now, after going through much more trial and error, here are some additions to that list:
Direct light is essential – I tried starting some seeds indoors on a warming pad. I don’t have a good window with direct sunlight, so thought I could keep them indoors until the moment they sprouted. I was wrong. The little seedlings came bursting out of the soil desperately reaching for the light. Many came up too leggy and lived a very short life.
Chamomile Tea is a must to prevent “dampening off” – This is a plight for pepper and tomato seedlings and chamomile tea kills the fungus that makes this happen. Read more about this here.
Some things are best seeded directly into the soil – winter squash, beans, and maybe cucumbers (have to get back to you on that one)
Young transplants must be protected from pill bugs – While they mostly eat decaying matter, they can eat a young plant down to a nub in one night. In my garden they seem to particularly like cucumbers and beans. I protect my plants by cutting out the bottom of a 4″ plastic pot and creating a barricade around the plant.
Last year I tried growing everything from seed (well all my veggies anyway) and it was such a bad experience that I said I was done with seeds. But I can’t resist the pull, & tried again this year with much greater success. However, I can’t quite make the commitment that you have, I still buy some seedlings. 🙂
Growing Up in the Garden said:
I think it is really hard and takes a lot of trial and error. Over the years I have been moving away from seedlings and planting more from seed. I am finding peppers the most difficult. Last year, I broke down and bought seedlings. I am determined not to this year. Thanks or reading!