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Starting garden plants indoors from seeds now is a relatively inexpensive way to kick-off your spring garden. Seeds often offer a greater variety of colors, sizes and growth habits than started plants. In addition, long-season vegetables must be started indoors in early spring and many annual flowers need an indoor start if they are to bloom during the summer. Here are tips for starting your seedlings:
 
Start seeds in small, drainable containers with a single seedling per container.  Seed-starting mixes, usually composed of vermiculite and peat, are recommended because they're sterile, lightweight, weed free and provide a texture especially suited to the needs of germinating seeds and tiny seedlings. 

Check the timing on the seed packet as each species has its own requirements.

  

Sow fresh seeds individually according to package directions. If you are unsure about depth, a rule of thumb is to plant a seed four times as deep as its width. Label each container--seedlings can look very similar! 

  

Location is important. Seeds need consistently warm soil to germinate and produce strong roots. Choose a location away from heavy traffic, pets, cold drafts, and excess heat.

  

Water the seed mix to keep it moist while the seeds germinate. Use a spray bottle to water so as to not wash away germinating seeds or damage delicate seedlings. If your containers are in a tray, water can be added to the tray and allowed to move up into the mix. In either method, drain excess water to keep roots healthy.

 

About two weeks before planting outdoors, start hardening the seedlings by putting them outside for a few hours in the shade during the warmth of the afternoon. Choose a spot protected from wind. Bring them back inside for the night before temperatures start to drop. Each day, leave the plants out a little longer, gradually exposing them to more direct sunlight. By the end of two weeks, unless freezing temperatures are forecast, the seedlings can stay outside in a sunny area until you are ready to transplant them into the garden. 


Click here for more ideas on starting your garden indoors.
 
EMAIL ONLY SPECIALS THIS WEEK

Miracle Gro
Seed Starting Soil
$5.49  
No Coupon Necessary

 

  10 Pot Peat Strip
  only $3.29
  NO COUPON NECESSARY
 

Burpee Seeds
Asstd Colors / Styles
Prices .79 - $3.99


 
K&B True Value carries a wide variety of vegetable and flower seeds with many different colors to choose from.

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