You might be itching to get your garden going, but chances are the sowing season is still a few weeks away. Well no worries, you can start your seeds indoors several weeks before the final frost of the season! By starting your seeds indoors, you can get a jump on the growing season while saving some money in the process. Here is what you need to know to start seeds indoors.
How to Start Seeds Indoors
First, let’s take a look at what you will need:
- Seed starters (you can use store bought, yogurt cups, egg carton cups, egg shells, K-cups…etc.)
- Potting soil
- Spray bottle
- Cookie sheets or a tray of some sort
- Wood craft sticks
- Clear Plastic Wrap
Did you know that you can find all of these items at your local dollar store? You sure can! As you can see, starting seeds indoors is quite budget friendly.
A good rule of thumb for when to start your seeds is 4 weeks before the last frost of the season. This will vary depending where you live, so consult The Farmer’s Almanac to find out when the perfect planting time is for you.
- Begin by placing the seed starter cups on the cookie sheet or tray. This way, the surface under the cups is protected and you can easily move them if you need to.
- Poke a hole in the bottom of your seed starter cups. This will ensure that the plant drains properly.
- Fill each cup 3/4 of the way full with nutrient rich potting soil.
- Add a seed to the cup according to package directions. Consult the package to see how far down you need to make the hole and how many seeds can be put in each hole.
- Replace the soil to cover the hole and mist the area with your spray bottle. Misting is easier and cleaner than a watering can, plus it will keep you from over watering.
- Use the wood craft sticks and marker to make plant markers for the seedlings so you know what they are once they start growing.
- Pull a sheet of plastic wrap over the top of the seed starters. This will allow light in but will help the plants retain heat. NOTE: You will need to remove the plastic wrap every few days to mist the soil to keep it moist. Just be sure to return the plastic when you are done.
- Place your seed starters in a window where they will get at least 6 hours of sun per day. If you don’t have an area where this is possible, a sun lamp will work.
- As soon as you see sprouting, remove the plastic wrap. Continue to water every few days and keep the soil moist at all times.
In just a few weeks, your seeds will be seedlings and they will be ready to get transplanted outside. Be sure the threat of frost has passed and you follow package directions when transplanting.
See how simple starting seeds indoors can be? Give these tips a try and get a jump on the growing season now!