As the spring approaches and the sun starts to shine brighter, it's the perfect time to start thinking about your garden. Whether you're an experienced gardener or a newbie, starting plants from seeds is a rewarding and satisfying process that allows you to take part in the miracle of life. However, starting seeds can be tricky, and many gardeners find it challenging to get their plants to sprout. In this blog post, we'll provide you with five practical tips for starting seeds successfully. So let's dive in and learn how to start seeds like a pro!
- Choose the Right Container
Choosing the right container is crucial when starting seeds. You want a container that is big enough to give your seeds room to grow, but not so big that they get lost in the soil. A container that is too small will restrict root growth and limit your plant's potential. You can use anything from biodegradable pots to seed trays to start your seeds, but make sure the container has drainage holes to prevent over-watering. We carry a wide variety of container options at our year-round locations. (link)
- Use the Right Soil
Seeds need the right soil to grow, and not all soils are the same. The ideal soil for starting seeds is a fine, loose, and well-draining soil. The soil should be light enough to allow the seedlings to push through, but not so light that it dries out too quickly. You can make your own seed-starting mix using a combination of peat moss, vermiculite, and perlite, or you can buy a premade seed-starting mix like our Black Gold Seed Starting Mix.
- Provide Proper Lighting
Light is crucial for seed germination, and without it, your seeds will struggle to sprout. Place your seed containers in a sunny windowsill or under artificial grow lights. If you’re using grow lights, keep them close to the plants, but not too close, as you don't want to burn the delicate seedlings. Ensure that the seedlings get at least 12 hours of light per day.
- Water Wisely
Over-watering is one of the most common mistakes gardeners make when starting seeds. Too much water can lead to rotting, and other fungal diseases. Water your seeds wisely by using a spray bottle or a gentle watering can to moisten the soil. Don’t water too often, as this can lead to waterlogged soil, which can suffocate your seeds. If you are using seed trays, you can even bottom water through the tray.
- Be Patient and Keep it Warm
Starting seeds can be a slow process, and it can take several weeks for your seeds to germinate. Be patient and keep your seeds warm, as warmth is crucial for germination. The ideal temperature to keep your seedlings at is between 65-75°F. You can even use a heat mat to keep the soil warm, but make sure you don't overheat the seeds as it will affect growth.
Follow these five tips for starting seeds successfully and watch your plants grow. With a little imagination and creativity, you can transform your garden into a lush and thriving paradise. To learn more about what’s growing on at our garden center, check out Mike, the Garden Guru, and his webinars with new plants, products, and expert planting advice. To keep inspired and grow with us, follow us on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok to dig into the joys of gardening!