Vermont Garden Journal: Starting Seeds

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I’m Charlie Nardozzi and this is
the Vermont Garden Journal. I tend to get a little seedy this time of year. I’m
itching to get into the garden, but snow, cold and mud stops me in my tracks.
So, I turn my attention to seed starting and get seed crazy. I want to grow
everything too soon. We all know what happens if we start out tomatoes now.
It’s a tomato jungle by mid-April, a good month before we can put them
outdoors. So, here are some seed starting tips for you and me to remember to
help contain ourselves.

Don’t go wild starting lots of
everything. Remember your 24 tomato seedlings will need somewhere to grow
outdoors! Unless you have a huge garden, stick with starting only unusual
varieties or plants indoors that you normally won’t find as transplants in
garden centers.

Get lit up. Invest in a simple
light system with full spectrum lights to grow strong, stocky healthy
seedlings. It will really make a difference in their early growth and
performance in the garden.

Use the right soil. Regular potting
soil can be too heavy for small seeds to germinate through. Look for seed
starting mixes that are finely milled, so easier for young seedlings to grow

Start at the right time. I know
you’re chomping at the bit to sow, but hold on. In most of our area we can
still have frost until mid to end May. Use that date and count backwards. Most
seedlings should be started from mid March to mid April.

Get creative with your pot.
Consider using biodegradable pots made from coir (coconut fiber), cow manure,
or peat moss. Check out the new, innovative Velcro pots that are reusable and
naturally air prune roots so your transplants are less likely to get root

This week in the garden you should
be heading to the Vermont Flower Show to hear seminars on new perennials
flowers, organic gardening and much more, and be inspired by the beautiful

Next week I’ll be talking about the
perennial flower of the year. Until then, I’ll be seeing you in the garden.


Starting Indoors Article
Seed Starting Indoors
Vermont Flower Show

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