Seed Starting – Getting you up-to-date

So I thought I’d share my seed starting notes up to this point.  I haven’t kept a log of germination as I should be but I will post pictures so you can see for yourself. I’ve been quite eclectic with my tray styles but I keep telling myself that, that’s not what is important.  Please note that all of the planting information is taken directly from the seed packet from each of the manufacturer.  One of the things I’m keeping track of this year is how I like different seed suppliers (customer service, trust-worthiness, organic, Non-GMO, heirloom selection, etc), as well as how some of my older seeds and how well they germinate and whether or not they become healthy seedlings.

Tray A notes:

Tray marker will always remain in same spot so entire flat can be identified.  Trays will be identified A – Z.

Rohrer Tall Utah seeds dumped that’s why there are so many.

tray-atray-bWhere I oopsed, both dill and the other varieties are germinating in each pod.  I will wait for them to have 3 – 4 true leaves and then attempt to separate.

tray-c

Stately lupines always elicit a “wow!” This colorful array of tall flower spikes will take your breath away.  There is a huge rage of flower colors in this blend; quite dramatic when planted in mass; but also exquisite when scattered.  In mild climates lupine is planted in the fall and frown as an annual.  Stunning planted in a mixed border, and as a cut flower.

When to sow outside:  1 – 2 weeks after average last frost.  In mild climates can be sown in late summer for bloom the following spring.

When to start inside:  6 – 8 weeks before average last frost.  Lupine doesn’t like to be transplanted; therefore, start in pulp pots that can be planted directly into the ground without disturbing roots.

Days to emerge: 15 – 25 days

Coleus Rainbow Blend, Solenostemon scutellarioides HEIRLOOM

Dramatic, large colorful foliage for shaded areas! Wide range of fabulously bright tropical colors. Coleus is an excellent houseplant that will add color to those dreary winter days.  In the garden, its white, bronze, gold, copper, yellow, pink, red, and purple, foliage will brighten up shady areas that typically are hard to grow flowers in!  Also great for containers and planters!  Deer resistant.

When to sow outside:  1 – 2 weeks after average last frost.

When to start inside:  RECOMMENDED. 6 – 8 weeks before average last frost; anytime when used as house plant.

Days to emerge:  15 – 20 days

trays-d-and-e

Calendula officinalis – Park Seed 2/4/17

Sow seeds in late winter, 8 – 10 weeks before transplanting outdoors in spring.  Cool annuals can sown in summer for trasplanting outdoors in early fall.  Make shallow rows in moist frow mix and sow seeds, covering lightly; do not cover very small seed.  Place in a cool location, never let dry out.  When 4 leaves develop, transplant to 2 ¼” pots.  After danger of frost, set pots in a protected area to harden plants for 3 days.  Then plant 12 inches apart in good garden soil and water well.

1/31/17

Transplanted Wild Lettuce Blend from Tray A into pots. 2 I took the newspaper off, 2 I kept the newspaper wrapped around as a test.  To be fair, the 2 with the newspaper were slightly sparser than those without the newspaper.

marigold-1Marigold French Favorite Blend (Tagetes patula nana) – Botanical Interests 2/4/17 Bright mix of yellow, gold, red and bicolor flowers.  Compact lacy plants.  This award-winning variety from Europe features large flowers with a single row of petals in bright sunny colors surrounding a yellow or orange button center.  Butterflies prefer this type of marigold over the full-flowered, double marigolds because it’s easier to reach the nectar.  Plants grow and flower quickly with continuous blooms from spring until frost.  Deer resistant.  Start 4 – 6 weeks before average last frost.

Days to emerge 5 – 7 days

Seed depth – ¼ “

Seed spacing (I did 3 per pod)

Thinning: When 1” tall, thin to 1 every 6 – 8”

Old seeds:  Packed for 2014 – Sell by 12/31/14

marigold-2Marigold French Dwarf Double Mixed Colors – American Seed 2/4/17 – Fully doubled flowers in shades of orange, red, and gold.  Plants are compact with attractive deep green foliage.  Blooms early summer until fall frost.

Days to germinate: 10 – 14 days

Depth to sew: ¼ “

Thin seedlings when they are 2 – 3 inches in height, with final spacing of the plants 6 – 8” apart.

Old seeds:  Packed for 2012 Sell by 12/2012

tray-fButterfly Flower Asclepias tuberosa – Botanical Interests 2/4/17

Native

Vivid, red-orange flowers attract majestic Monarchs and other colorful butterflies.  Essential for wildflower and butterfly gardens.  Butterflies will seek out your garden when you grow this vigorous perennial, shrub-like plant, you can observe the life cycle of the Monarch butterfly! Beginning in summer, you will be treated to a profusion of fiery, red-orange flowers followed by decorative green seed pods. Drought tolerant once established.  Native to much of the eastern United States.  A nice addition to cut flower arrangements.  Deer resistant

Start 6 – 8 weeks before average last frost Benefits greatly from stratification (research this, did not do anything special).  I scattered in flat and will thin if they germinate

Days to emerge: 14 – 28 days

Seed depth: ¼”

Thin when 3” tall, thin to 1 every 16 – 24”

Old Seeds Packed for 2014 – Sell by 1/31/2014

tray-gCabbage – Red Acre – Rohrer Seeds 2/4/17This hardy, healthful and delicious crop is easy to grow and ideal for small and large gardens.  Plants thrive in cool weather.  By planting types with different maturity dates, you can enjoy cabbage for weeks.  All are delicious when cooked or eaten raw.

Start early varieties indoors 5 – 7 weeks before last frost.  Before planting, harden plants for one week, by putting outdoors during the day.  Sow late varieties outdoors in late spring.  A late summer planting is recommended in mild winter areas.  Plant in a sunny location where cabbage was not grown the previous year.  Enrich soil with vegetable food.  Firm soil over seed and keep moist.

Harvest when head is firm, cutting just below lowest leaves.

Planting depth: ¼ – ½”

Seed spacing 4” (I put 2 seeds per pod)

Spacing between plants 24 – 36”

Germination: 5 – 14 days

Maturity 60 – 100 days (from setting transplants in garden)

tray-hGolden Acre – Cabbage (Brassica oleracea) – Southern Exposure 2/4/17

Heirloom – 62 days – Fast maturing, small cabbages ideal for small gardens and tight spacings.  The 5 – 7” heads are among the earliest to mature.  Resistant to cabbage yellows.

Direct sow indoors in pots or flats in late winter, 6 – 8 weeks before average last frost.  For fall crops, sow in late summer, 10 -1 2 weeks before the first hard freeze, indoors or outside under row cover, keeping the beds, moist during germination (Sow at ½” depth in fall.)  Harden off and transplant when the plants have 3 – 4 true leaves, approx. 5 – 6 weeks after sowing.  Apply deep mulch, Provide fertile, well-drained soil and even moisture.

Harvest:  Twist off the heads when they are full formed and firm.  All the strongest side sprout to develop a second, smaller head

Depth: ¼”

Final plant spacing 12 – 18”

Light:  Full sun

Days to emerge: 4 – 10 days

tray-iCabbage – Golden Acre – Heirloom – Rohrer Seeds (Early Harvest)

This hardy, healthful and delicious crop is easy to grow and ideal for small and large gardens.  Plants thrive in cool weather.  By planting types with different maturity dates, you can enjoy cabbage for weeks.  All are delicious when cooked or eaten raw.

Start early varieties indoors 5 – 7 weeks before last frost.  Before planting, harden plants for one week, by putting outdoors during the day.  Sow late varieties outdoors in late spring.  A late summer planting is recommended in mild winter areas.  Plant in a sunny location where cabbage was not grown the previous year.  Enrich soil with vegetable food.  Firm soil over seed and keep moist.

Harvest when head is firm, cutting just below lowest leaves.

Planting depth: ¼ – ½”

Seed spacing 4” (I put 2 seeds per pod)

Spacing between plants 24 – 36”

Germination: 5 – 14 days

tray-jCabbage – Early Jersey Wakefield – Southern Exposure 2/4/17

Sow in shallow pots or flats indoors under grow lights, in the green house, or in a cold frame.  Use good quality sterile seed starting mix.  Pot up to larger containers as necessary.  Harden off for 1 – 2 weeks before transplanting outside by moving the seedlings into direct sunlight during the day, gradually increasing the number of hours of exposure.  Transplant gently; avoid damaging the stems.

Dark green, sweet conical head average 5” diameter and 2 – 3 pounds.  Has a small core and good wrapper leaves.  Good resistance to frost and cabbage yellows.  For home, storage, or fresh-market.

tray-k(Yogurt cups) Broccoli – Waltham 29 – Rohrer Seeds – Heirloom 2/6/17

Sell by 12/31/16

A delicious, nutritious, and easy to grow vegetable.  Tall branching plants form compact central heads.  After the main head is removed, smaller heads will continue to develop over a long season.  Popular fresh or frozen.

Maturity 60 – 80 days when started from transplants.  Start seeds indoors or in hot beds 8 – 12 weeks before last frost.  Set plants out after last frost.  Or, sow directly outdoors in sunny location after last frost.  Cultivate soil and enrich with vegetable food and organic matter.  Firm soil over seed.

Water regularly, feed every 4 weeks and protect from insects.  Harvest by cutting 6” below central head and when buds are still tight.

(Square flats) – Broccoli – Green Goliath – Organic – Packed for 2016

Maturity 55 days.  A favorite broccoli for extended harvests; enjoy the plentiful side shoots for 3 weeks after cutting the large blue-green central heads.  Tight buds.  Use fresh or frozen.

Direct sow indoors in pots or flats in late winter, 6 – 8 weeks before average last frost.  For fall crops, sow in late summer, 10 – 12 weeds before the first hard freeze, indoors or outside under row cover.  (Sow at ½” depth in fall) Harden off and transplant to the garden when the plants have 3 – 4 true leaves, approx. 5 – 6 weeks after sowing.  Apply deep mulch.  Provide fertile, well-drained soil and even moisture. Final spacing 12 – 24”, Full Sun

Harvest when the heads are still tight, before the yellow flowers open.

tray-lSpinach – Long Standing Bloomsdale – Spinacea oleracea – Organic (Southern Exposure Seed Savers) 2/6/17

Heirloom.  45 days.  Fully-crinkled dark green leaves with excellent flavor for salads.  Most heat-tolerant, very dependable and cold hard; has withstood 0˚ F

Spinach does well with cool weather, short days, high soil fertility, ample moisture, and neutral pH (6.5 – 7.5)

Direct sow in spring as soon as the ground can be worked.  Thin at 3 – 4 true leaves.  Plant successions every 2 weeks.  Mulch.  For fall and winter greens, direct sow 1 month before 1st frost (sow thickly if grasshoppers are a problem).  Heat can kill the seedlings, so wait for cool weather.  Frosts sweeten the flavor.  May tolerate temperature as low 0˚ F.  Protect with row cover and mulch as necessary.  Over-wintered spinach will resume growth in the spring.

Harvest: Snip off leaves near the base, or harvest whole plants when hot weather threatens.

Final plant spacing 4 – 6”, Light: Full Sun  Days to emerge: 7 – 12

Lettuce – Butterhead – Marvel of Four Seasons – Lactuca sativa – Heirloom (Southern Exposure Seed Savers)

Beautiful color and delicate, buttery flavor.  Heat and cold tolerance means on extended growing season.  Excellent baby greens.

Tasty and attractive.  The tender sweet leaves are green at the base turning to a beautiful cranberry-red forming a crinkly rosette that almost looks like a flower! Won’t turn bitter when heat arrives.  Rosettes are 8 – 12” in diameter, good for large containers.

Recommended 2 – 4 weeks before average last frost, and successive sowings thereafter every 3 weeks until 2 weeks before the first fall frost.  To start inside 2 – 4 weeks before average last frost and in summer when soil temperatures are too warm outside to germinate lettuce.

Days to emerge: 5 – 10 days, Seed depth 1/8”, Seed Spacing: a group of 6 seeds every 8 inches, Row Spacing: 8”

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