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Square Foot Gardening Forum
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Indoor seed starting question Toplef10Indoor seed starting question 1zd3ho10

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.

Indoor seed starting question I22gcj10Indoor seed starting question 14dhcg10

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Indoor seed starting question

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Post  danieggert 3/17/2023, 5:02 pm

Hi,  I was on the Facebook SFG site on Sunday while waiting for my grand-daughter's turn to wrestle in the tournament.  I was killing time.

I came across a great post on seed starting but sure can't find it today.

This is what I remember

1. sprout the seeds (I want to do like I have seen on this site, face down on a plastic bag with a wet paper towel on top.  Light or no light?)
2. plant in a 3" peat pot about half way up (with MM or seed starting medium)(after 1st 2 leaves or first 2 'true' leaves)
3. put under lights about 2" above pots
4. add dirt as plant grows
5.  use small fan to mimic wind and make stem stronger
6. plant in garden after last frost

Does this sound right?  Did I miss something?  Will this work?

Is there a better way to start the seedlings in the 3" peat pots.

I will be starting the sifting of my 12 CF of compost tomorrow in the garage with a propane heater on.  Whoo hoo, Lots O' Fun

Dani From Burr Ridge
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Post  OhioGardener 3/17/2023, 6:10 pm

danieggert wrote: Will this work?

Yes, except for the part about adding soil as the plant grows. Most seedlings do not want their crown covered with soil, and they expect to grow at soil level. There are exceptions, of course, but most prefer to grow where they start.

Is there a better way to start the seedlings in the 3" peat pots.

Not necessarily better, but a lot easier.  Fill the pots with sifted, moistened MM, plant the seeds in the MM, put the pots in a tray with a clear plastic cover over it, and set it on a heat mat under lights. When the seeds sprout, unplug the heat mat and remove the plastic cover. Watch 'em grow.

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Post  sanderson 3/20/2023, 3:19 am

I couldn't find the FB thread, either.

What OG wrote.  Don't add more MM or soil as the little seedlings grow.  The MM or soil has to be really moist because peat pots can dry out easily.  I'm in a hot arid climate.  Cover with plastic and set on heat mat.  Mist if they seem to be getting dry.  As each one germinates, uncover and make sure they are under lights.  Water from the bottom.  You may want to make a heating/germination spot and a light area for the germinated pots.  Make sure the lights are down close according to the type of lights you are using.  

If you use the baggie and wet paper towel method for germination, yes, place with seed side down.  Magic marker label on the towel side.  When you see the little radicle(root), plant in a pot to the depth on the seed packet.  Oh, so carefully.  Like with tweezers or some other tender method.  I tried it this year and it really helped get the peppers to germinate fast. Very Happy

I personally hate peat pots, but I know many folks use them, or cow pots.  If I have to buy a replacement start from the nursery, I carefully tear off the peat pot because it is almost impossible to keep the peat pot wet in the MM in the beds.

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Post  Simso 3/24/2023, 8:30 pm

I grow my seeds in many ways, I have square foot gardening, traditional gardening, hydroponics nft, dwc, and aeroponics 

One of my easiest ways when planting out in sq ft is using this humidity unit, self made, it pumps water twice a day from bottom to top.

Thats 80 snow peas ready for transplant out, I planted them all out last night, took 4 days to go from seed to this

The empty looking level  is rockmelon seeds and fennel seeds which I put in yesterday after empting the tray of snow peas, this morning the rockmelon has sprouted
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