Friday, January 18, 2013

GMG's Friday Find: Ladies & Gentlemen, Start Your Seeds!

Radishes Romanesco
I'm not only a novice gardener, but a lazy one too!  In years past I would happily trot off to my local garden center where all the work had been done to purchase the spring tomato and pepper plants that had already been cared for and tended to.  Oh how easy!  Until I realized that with just a little bit of effort on my part I could start seeds myself and get a jump start on the growing season with nice sized plants that yielded an even larger variety of delicious heirloom vegetables

Rainbow Chard
For a wide selection of certified organic heirloom seeds check out The Sustainable Seed Company. They offer over 1,500 varieties of heirloom and certified organic seeds, practice sustainable, water conserving and environmentally responsible farming techniques.  Sustainable Seed grows over 50% of the seeds on their certified organic farm that is sustainably powered, the only company of its kind to do so.  All seeds are grown without the use of chemical fertilizers or pesticides.

The whole process is quite simple.  First, you will want to start your seeds 8 weeks before the last spring frost in your area.

Then, choose a container, there is a wide variety you can use, from those made from peat to simple cell packs.  If you're a big yogurt fan, start saving your containers which are also usable as seed starter containers.  Make sure to punch a few holes in the bottom for proper drainage.

Start with seed starting mix that is lightly dampened and fill your container, leaving about a half inch at the top.  Sow your seeds according to the depth and distance recommended on the package.  Cover lightly again with mix and water.  To provide a nice humid environment while the seeds start to sprout you can cover the container with a plastic bag and secure with a rubber band, remembering to check daily to maintain moisture.  Once the seeds start to sprout remove the plastic bag and place your containers in a warm, sunny location. 

There really is something wonderful and gratifying in sowing your own seeds for transplant to your garden or outside containers.  First and foremost, the selection available for unique and delicious vegetables far surpasses what you'd find at a big box or even local garden center.  And when you begin to harvest and enjoy nature's bounty, you'll be well pleased at the money you save, and the amazing food you grew from seed.  So check out the estimated last spring frost in your area, and start your'll be very happy you did.

Garden Media Group

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