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Hello Guest!
Welcome to the official Square Foot Gardening Forum.
There's lots to learn here by reading as a guest. However, if you become a member (it's free, ad free and spam-free) you'll have access to our large vermiculite databases, our seed exchange spreadsheets, Mel's Mix calculator, and many more members' pictures in the Gallery. Enjoy.

Starting seeds I22gcj10Starting seeds 14dhcg10

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Post  Cajunsmoke14 12/29/2013, 10:46 pm

Hi everyone,

I know you should start your seeds early in the house. My problem is the seedlings want get enough light and the cat will eat the plants.

I know starting them outside would be wrong as well, but how about this idea.

I can build a small hoop house like I use to cover my bed when the weather is severe on the south side of the trailer. It gets warm there. Maybe I could put the trays on some small platforms so they are not on the ground, with maybe a heat pad under the tray.

Do y'all think this would be warm enough to grow seeds?
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Post  camprn 12/29/2013, 11:11 pm

Hi Cajun, the most important thing is to not sow the seeds too early in the house. the second most important thing (besides growing medium, heat and water) is adequate light for adequate hours (14-16) a day.

I think there are quite a few threads that cover this, some of them from last year, some for the year before, so take a look around the forum.

There are a few websites I use when trying to figure when I should sow my seeds.

http://www.johnnyseeds.com/t-interactivetools.aspx

http://myfolia.com/

http://www.almanac.com/gardening/planting-dates/zipcode/70586

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Post  sanderson 12/29/2013, 11:16 pm

Mini-, portable- hot houses??  DH made these for me out of scrap wood.  Lined with 4 ml plastic.  I brought them inside when the nights dropped below 40*. I sowed the seeds Feb 15.
Starting seeds Seedli11
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Post  camprn 12/29/2013, 11:33 pm

Oh, I forgot to mention, you will only need the heat mat for germination, after that the heat mat should be removed.

Nice little hot box sanderson. What a Face 

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Post  sanderson 12/29/2013, 11:40 pm

Thanks, DH made 2.
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Post  Marc Iverson 12/30/2013, 1:16 am

Those are cool, sanderson. Still not sure how I'll put something together for my own in-house start-ups.
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Post  camprn 12/30/2013, 6:34 am

Marc Iverson wrote:Those are cool, sanderson.  Still not sure how I'll put something together for my own in-house start-ups.
maybe you can get more ideas here.

https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t9532p30-stands-for-grow-lights?highlight=station

and here

https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t9734-seed-starting?highlight=lights

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

https://squarefoot.forumotion.com/t1306-other-gardening-books



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Post  jimmy cee 12/30/2013, 9:02 am

Last winter was my very first try at seed starting, in my opinion it was very successful.
Had a few dollars left over from Christmas and picked up a 5 tier shelf kit at Lowes, for $75, added wheels for $25.
My most happy seeds were in a $3.00 each square plastic plastic 4 inch case with yogurt containers filled with potting soil.
I cut out the large bottom area of these containers, and added a small (cut to fit) round piece of teflon scrubber for drainage , it had a lip perfect for holding the round teflon piece.
Using the small area for the bottom I filled them all, loaded seeds and watered from the bottom up.
I had a couple other growing containers which were a little pricy,these didn't work as well as my home made units.
In August I moved this unit out of my basement, into my driveway and started my fall crops, they did well, even though I didn't get them in the ground soon enough, plants were fine except for the bugs, I'll take care of the bugs this season...
Starting seeds Yogurt10Starting seeds Yogurt11Starting seeds Yogurt12Starting seeds Yogurt13

Wrapped the stand in sheet plastic, added a crock pot full of water on low setting on the bottom.
Fully enclosed with the crock pot open (no lid)...water temps 130 F and grow lamps on I had a temp of 75 deg F.inside the enclosure.
Lots of moisture also, opened it all when seeds came up and were doing well .Starting seeds Newest10

Starting fall seeds in August, able to move in and out of shade as needed...will continue to do this again.Starting seeds 5_18_110
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Post  cheyannarach 12/31/2013, 3:03 pm

Nice set up Jimmy! I love the idea of the yougurt cups and scratchpads!!
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Post  boffer 12/31/2013, 3:21 pm

jimmy cee wrote:Starting seeds Yogurt12
Those look like very clean holes to have been cut with a knife or razor blade.  Starting seeds 3170584802  What's the secret?
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Post  sanderson 12/31/2013, 3:32 pm

Jimmy, so cool.  Starting seeds 3170584802 
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Post  jimmy cee 12/31/2013, 9:57 pm

boffer
The bottom of the cup is cut out.
To do this I use a box cutter with a new blade.
First just cut the center out close to the edge, THEN  make the final cut very carefully,
keeping the edge of the cup pressed against a surface, make an oblong shape, then using the box cutter
cut the molded edge close to the rim.
Work the cutter as not to cut through the outer edge.
It took me a few tries, however it came quickly.
Just be sure caution is taken as the box cutters can cut through a finger or hand like it's butter.
Amazing how the yogurt remains in the areas that is removed.
Wife loves these yogurts and I love the containers.
Another nice feature, I wash them and use them again.
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Post  plantoid 1/1/2014, 2:33 pm

Dremmels hobby tool hand grinders /drills make good hole cutters as well Boffer .
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Post  sanderson 1/1/2014, 3:05 pm

The auto reminder from Gardenate for Zone 9A arrived today. Oh, man, I need to start seeds in the next few days.
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Post  boffer 1/1/2014, 6:49 pm

Thanks jimmy cee and plantioid, I had been thinking about putting a hole saw on my old Milwaukee Hole Hawg!    Overkill? Razz Razz
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Post  camprn 1/1/2014, 7:49 pm

Has anyone ever used a dibble board?

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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Post  boffer 1/1/2014, 7:56 pm

Nope, I figure it's just one more thing I can't find when I need it!  I'm content to let my fingers do the dimpling!
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Post  sanderson 1/1/2014, 10:26 pm

Had to look that one up.  study 
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Post  Cajunsmoke14 1/1/2014, 10:38 pm

Thanks for all the advise and information.
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Post  jimmy cee 1/1/2014, 10:43 pm

Holesaw ???no no no
That plastic is so thin a saw will tear it up..
surgeons approach nice and neat
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Post  plantoid 1/2/2014, 7:35 am

Jimmy's comment about being like a surgeon made me think of one of my wood working tools out in the garage . It is a trepanner with a tungsten tipped cutting arm & is normally razor sharp even after cutting out wood , ply wood , tinplate or aluminium disks

You could use such  a trepanning cutter with a razor sharpened cutting tip on super slow speed in a table top drill press . Firstly putting a full length large round peg made of wood that fits the base of the cup & is screwed & glued to a big plywood baseplate . Put this inside the cup before you lower the trepanner to stop the cup collapsing perhaps using some expanded polystyrene as a sacrificial support in the cup   . It would score through the plastic in seconds and you could adjust the feed down to suit the rate of clean cut , knowing that if things go pear shaped & foul up the wooden peg &  the base plate will stop you taking your fingers off ( well that's the theory anyway    Laughing )
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Post  Goosegirl 1/2/2014, 7:47 am

plantoid wrote:Jimmy's comment about being like a surgeon made me think of one of my wood working tools out in the garage . It is a trepanner with a tungsten tipped cutting arm & is normally razor sharp even after cutting out wood , ply wood , tinplate or aluminium disks

You could use such  a trepanning cutter with a razor sharpened cutting tip on super slow speed in a table top drill press . Firstly putting a full length large round peg made of wood that fits the base of the cup & is screwed & glued to a big plywood baseplate . Put this inside the cup before you lower the trepanner to stop the cup collapsing perhaps using some expanded polystyrene as a sacrificial support in the cup   . It would score through the plastic in seconds and you could adjust the feed down to suit the rate of clean cut , knowing that if things go pear shaped & foul up the wooden peg &  the base plate will stop you taking your fingers off ( well that's the theory anyway    Laughing )

Sounds like a bigger hammer!

GG

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Post  camprn 1/2/2014, 7:52 am

LOL, box cutter to drill press. You guys are funny!


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There are certain pursuits which, if not wholly poetic and true, do at least suggest a nobler and finer relation to nature than we know. The keeping of bees, for instance. ~ Henry David Thoreau

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Post  jimmy cee 1/2/2014, 8:07 am

I can't believe this   Laughing 
I finally found some simple and easy to do...and others are doing exactly what I used to do...
Take the most complicated and technical method....

Gotta go tel my wife, there really are others out the like me...
and she thought I was the only one that was like this..

Think I'll go change my box cutter blade
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Post  camprn 1/2/2014, 8:58 am

I usually start my seeds in trays and then transplant seedlings into cell packs or recycled cups.

Starting seeds 00710

Starting seeds 00910

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in the last photo, L to R, a tray of tomato seedlings, transplanted basil seedlings, transplanted tomato seedlings.

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