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Gardening Reference » Gardening in 2005
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by linda12159 on March 18, 2005 04:36 AM
hi....i sure would love to start some seeds indoors, but i'm afraid i've read so much information that i'm ....ummmm.....confused, lol! heres what i would like to attempt. 4'oclocks. i've got a pretty cold basement, so not sure if this is a good place. upstaires is pretty chilly too (due to conservation), lol!! we keep the house at 63 daytime ad 59 nighttime. i have growing lights so thats not a problem, i'm alittle confused on the soil situation, soiless.. potting soil? i dunno.....and if i decided not sow indoors, isnt the soil outside way different then sterile soil. will the seeds do good directly sown???? i know i sound like a basket case, truthfully i am..i got such wonderful seeds from some wonderful people and its kinda like i dont want to let them down...silly me!!!
thanks, Linda
by weezie13 on March 18, 2005 05:12 AM
Linda,
Not knowing much when I did mine last year,
I went with the.......
"Seed Starting" bagged mixes at Wal~mart, Eckards', etc.
of course then the composter in me got the
best of me, and I thru in some compost,
*good for nutrients and holding a wee~bit of moisture*
and I then added added a bit of;
Perlite: for it to hold water for the plant roots.
Perlite let's the extra water drain easily through soil.

Vermiculite: It lets holds a bit of water and is
also used to aerate the soil...

YOu can also use it to start seeds, to root cuttings, and to store bulbs.

Summary/
The seed starting mix for soil is just a lighter mix, and easier for the fine little roots of the seeds to start and go thru...
The compost is for some extra food...
Verm/Perl are for aeration in the soil to keep it loose.

Weezie

P.S. There is NO NEED to fertilize a seedling for little bit, or until you see the first leaves....
The seed when formed has all of it's nutrients in it supplied by the momma seed when she made it until it's a wee~bit more grown up!

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Weezie

Don't forget to be kind to strangers. For some who have
done this have entertained angels without realizing it.
- Bible - Hebrews 13:2

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http://photobucket.com/albums/y250/weezie13/
by linda12159 on March 18, 2005 06:35 AM
hi weezie....thanks for the recipe...so to speak. we don't have a wal-mart nearby but we do have k-mart. all they have is potting soil,can i use that then mix the rest in? if not i guess i'll have to go to nursery or garden store. but will pay more i'm sure. what do you think of my basement conditions for the little darlins? too cold??
Linda
by Cricket on March 18, 2005 08:12 AM
Hi Linda,

I just start my seeds in whatever I have on hand - either potting soil or peat moss. Sometimes, if the mood strikes me, I'll mix the two. Most seeds prefer warmer temperatures to germinate than you'll find in a cold basement but I couldn't say about 4 o'clocks. I just planted them directly outdoors last spring, though I think you can sow them outdoors in the fall, too.

Not much help, am I? [Big Grin]
by linda12159 on March 18, 2005 06:13 PM
you know what.....that idea of planting them outdoors sounds pretty good bout now....do you soak the 4 o'clocks before you plant them? something i read....but not sure if thats accurate...thanks, Linda
by tkhooper on March 19, 2005 01:04 PM
Hi linda,

I'm a new gardener too. I just used potting soil and my house has been on the cold side since I planted also (landlord controls the heat). Everything has come up so far except the ranunculus and they are suppose to be slow so I haven't given up hope yet. I usually buy miracle grow products.

I don't know how much help this is but mikes posts are always right on for me, so I know you are in good hands.

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by linda12159 on March 19, 2005 05:18 PM
thanks tkhooper, and nice to meet you!! do you use floresent lights as well? so, tell me what else you've planted? Linda
by tkhooper on March 19, 2005 10:26 PM
Hi Linda,

This is what I do and it's probably all wrong.

Nope no additional lighting I have a 68" x 49" south facing window in the dinning room, a 51" x 49" south facing window in the kitchen, and about a 30" x 49" west facing window in the kitchen so I really don't need a flourescent light. I have been thinking about adding shelves about half way up in all the window enclosures since they are 7" deep on the inside. What I do for the seeds is just bury them to the depth it says to on the packages in the miracle grow and then spray them with weak solution of miracle grown plant food (I have recently found out I could have just used straight water). I spray so I don't move the seeds around if they are just sitting on top of the soil or are only buried 1/4 inch deep. Then I keep spraying everyday so they stay moist. I am in virginia zone 7a so until summer hits I don't have a lot of humidity. When they first sprout they use even more water for some reason although from what I've read they should start using less pretty soon. I know once they are full grown the house plants at least like to get dry between waters. Next comes the transplanting stage and that is when all of my plants die so for that I do not have a clue.

I read somewhere recently that since I have single pane windows I shouldn't have plants in the window because of drafts. Probably because it is Virginia that hasn't caused anything to die or not sprout yet, but maybe my plants aren't as healthy as they should be and that is why they die when I transplant?

I wish I knew more but If you follow mike's advice I bet everything will go perfectly.

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by tkhooper on March 19, 2005 10:43 PM
oooops!!!!

What else am I growing sorry misread the post.

Lets see I have 2 forms of crassula one the has purple edges to it's leaves and is in a hanging basket since it is imitating a haning plant. And a ground cover that has pink that covers about half of it's leaves.

Then I have flowers started inside that have all sprouted, they are Ipomopsis, Zinnia, Dianthus, Amaranth, & moss rose The Ipomopsis took the longest to come up.

For herbs I have a one year old sweet basil that is shading about half of the south facing kitchen window. And I had before I tried to transplant them chives, mint, curled parsley, thyme, cilantro, and marjoram which are all dead out in the garden now. I have started a second round of chives indoors and they have sprouted and these are staying indoors.

I have a dotted aloe that I recently repotted which is not doing well but before the move it was doing well.

And I have an entire tub of Roma tomatoes, I planted the entire packet. I don't think that was a good idea. I started some green onion indoors just the other day, I won't know for awhile weather they will sprout.

Outside in a 3 foot cement container 30" tall I planted some canna, nasturtium, and marigolds. They haven't come up yet but it hasn't been a week yet so that's ok.

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by linda12159 on March 20, 2005 06:23 PM
hi tk....wow....that sounds like some garden your gonna have. i read somewhere else on here that you have no luck with transplanting. i also read somewhere that if you use those jiffy pellets, you know, those pots made of peat, anyway i read that its less shock to the little darlins when transplanting them [dunno] i'm just an enquiring mind, but it sounds like good advice. as for the humidity.....i live in the chicagoland area and we get soooo dry hear in the winter months. we keep a big soup pot of water on the stove all day, then off at night, incase the flame goes out. it keeps our house right around 50-51 humidity. we have a gauge!! anyway its just a thought, and with the flame so low it really hasn't increased the gas bill. i do it cuz i hate that dry feeling!! but this would help any plant i'm sure!
Linda

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learn from others mistakes....you can't live long enough to make them all yourself
by Jiffymouse on March 20, 2005 06:50 PM
hey linda, gotta tell you my "success story" so it can inspire you.

i got all my jiffy pellets soaked (i am a BIG believer in them - my granny taught me, those and jiffy pots) anyway, i only got seeds in 3 of them. cucumber, mexican hat, and morning glory. and i forgot to soak/scar the morning glory. well, today, i have growth in all three. from sitting in a not too well lit dining room! get those babies started, it's great for the soul!!
by linda12159 on March 25, 2005 07:45 PM
your an inspiration [kissies] [thumb] i'm gonna do just that ....today as a matter of fact...yippeeeee
[clappy] [clappy] i'll let all of you who have held my hand (so to speak) through all my questions on this topic....know how they turn out!!
thank you....Linda

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learn from others mistakes....you can't live long enough to make them all yourself
by tkhooper on March 25, 2005 08:59 PM
Hi Linda,

I found out in another post that my problem with transplanting is that I need to get the seedlings used to being outside before I actually plant them out there. I didn't know that. So each day for a week they need to go out during the day and come in at night.

If I had known that I wouldn't have started so many things in long window boxes. I'm good for about 2 trips down the stairs from my apartment before I have to rest so this is going to take most of the morning and evening come April.

(put more "momentum" on the shopping list.)

But my waistline should love this if I can pull it off.

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by linda12159 on March 26, 2005 05:55 PM
thanks tk, i didn't know that either! [thumb] good luck with yours....and please take it slowly on those stairs [gabby]
Linda

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learn from others mistakes....you can't live long enough to make them all yourself
by Spider Lady on March 29, 2005 02:45 AM
I saw a neat idea in Birds & Blooms: Save your egg shells--be careful when you crack them open, getting them as equal as possible. Then clean them out & save them. When it comes time to plant your seeds, plant one or two in the egg shell. Time to plant outdoors--Just transfer the whole thing into the ground egg shell & all. (If you planted more than one seed, choose the strongest one--something I have a little trouble with.)The shell will compost into the soil adding nutrition. I haven't tried it yet, but I've been saving my egg shells & am looking forward to trying it--If hubby gets my plant window in before it's too late! We have 5 cats, so starting seeds indoors is a little risky. [kitty] [kitty] [kitty] [kitty] [kitty]

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