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I was sitting here reading some of my gardening notes from 2015. I made a lot of mistakes last year. Hopefully, the notes will help make this year's gardening more fruitful and with less work. One thing I like to try is planting seed from hybrid fruit and veggies.
I took the plastic lids off my storage boxes and filled it with seed starting soil. I moistened the soil and laid the seeds on top of the soil. I am getting a bumper crop. Keep them moist and in the sun. On warm days, they go on the porch. Tomatoes grow quickly. In May, they all go outside.
I am a do it myself person and made this method up. It works.
By bali from Summerhill, PA
Just wondering where you live we just moved to CO and I wasn't sure if I should wait to start seeds since it doesn't warm up till June? I've never had luck with seeds but this year I'm trying containers in the house, so any feedback would be appreciated!
Grow vegetable seeds in smaller pots or a small garden plot with a rich soil. By doing this, the seeds will grow better than being just scattered around a big plot. The difference is when you throw seeds in a wide space, there is little chance that you see the tiny plant growing. It can be lost among wild grasses and not recognized as your seedling at first.
Wild grasses can grow on wide soil spaces even if you clean and cultivate your soil daily, so scattering your seed will cause it take you a lot of effort in identifying and pulling the unwanted plants. While if you start with a small plot, it would be easier for you to weed and keep the plot ready for the more mature seedlings. The problem with these grasses or weeds is that they take away the nutrients which are supposedly absorbed by your little vegetables.
After a week or two when your vegetables have grown, and are visible and strong enough, you can start transferring them into a bigger plot until they are ready for harvest.
After my garden is tilled, quite a few rocks get dug up. If they are about the size of a fist, I put one at each end of each row of seeds planted or in the middle of a hill of squash to mark the spot. They can easily be removed once the plants come up. I also make map of the garden on a piece of paper and note where I planted beans, onions, etc. in case I need to refer to it as the rocks don't indicate that. The rocks are handy, don't require pounding a stake into the ground, and stay where you put them.
By Judy from Valley City, ND
I love your idea and would do it, except, we have a Labrador Retriever who so enjoys picking up rocks, carrying them around, then dropping them in different places. Mowing day is trouble of its own kind, LuLu's hobby would just add much confusion for where the garden is located. Enjoy your garden!
When I cut the root end off of scallions, I plant them in a pot on my porch and within a week or two, the tops have grown enough to use them. I do the same with any root vegetable and soon I have a free, healthy alternative to buying greens for salad, etc.
I do this each and every year for my tomatoes and peppers. When I am cutting/slicing my tomatoes and bell peppers, hot peppers, banana peppers, I slice them on a paper towel.
When you shop greenhouses in the spring, you may have noticed that some types of vegetables are rarely available as transplants; e.g. beets, peas, and carrots. That is because these types of vegetables grow best when sown directly into garden soil.
When planting your seed rows, plant a few onions on each end of the row so you can tell where the rows of slow germinating seeds are. By the time the onions are ready to pull, the seeds will have sprouted.
I use my flower pots from last year that already have soil in them. When I transplant, I then use the pot for my summer flowers. Works great!
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I am a beginning gardener and I would like to grow veggies with my kids. I was wondering what seeds are easiest. Also, can I use seeds I already have in the house like a peach seed or apple seeds? Can I plant seeds I cut from cucumbers? Do I need to dry out the seeds first? I'm just curious what will grow and what won't?
Hardiness Zone: 9a
By Michelle from Phoenix, AZ
You know what great for kids and grows so easy is beans. Kids love to watch them grow and they sprout within a few days. You can even put them in a papertowel with a few seeds and wet the papertowel and stick in into a plastic baggie so the kids can see it happening. After they sprout you can take the papertowel and put them in a pot and watch them produce!
Apple seeds, grapefruit, lemon, & lime (& avocado) have all grown for me. Just take the seeds - put between 2 layers of paper towel (moist) & put in a zip loc baggie. Wait for the sprouting (you'll see it!) then plant. Avocados of course you suspend over water with toothpicks. I'm a zone 6 so can't help much more than that. As missbes99 mentions, beans are a great thing to do. marg s.
Thanks everyone for the input keep the advice coming! We did plant a peach pit in the back yard and some apple seeds I guess I'm still in denial it will work. Time will tell.
I am curious why many people are suggesting to put in a wet paper towel and let spout first is that a better plan or can I just plant outside? We have had a lot of wet weather recently and it is perfect planting time!
I am a beginner vegetable gardener. Which seeds grow the fastest? Thanks!
By Trudy from in the woods, PA
Radishes harvest very fast. Many are ready to harvest in less than a month. There are many, many different kinds of radishes, too. Some are all white, some are red in the middle and green on the outside, very pretty. There are even black radishes. They have different flavors. And you can eat the greens. Radish leaves taste pretty much like the radish, and are really good in a salad.
Leaf lettuces grow quickly, and there are hundreds of varieties. You can harvest a beautiful salad in a few weeks.
Growing your own veggies is very fulfilling, and not as hard as you might think. I hope you are very successful, and that you really enjoy yourself. Good luck!
I agree, radishes and lettuce are great choices. You can plant fast-growing crops every couple of weeks to give you a steady supply during the season. If you choose loose leaf or "cut and come again" varieties of lettuce you can snip off leaves as you want them, leaving the plant to grow more. Another option would be early peas, baby carrots, or some varieties of beetroot. Read the description to see if the variety is suitable to harvest early; packets should tell you the length of time till maturity as well. Potatoes actually grow really well in containers, so you could even try new potatoes!
For vegetables that take longer to start from seed, like tomatoes, you can buy them as plants in your local garden center. Have fun!
Once again this year I purchased my vegetable seed packets to start inside. Other years I started them with special starting soil, placed them in a sunny window and kept them watered. I always end up with spindly plants with weak stems. How do I get stronger plants?
Hardiness Zone: 6a
By MaggieGrace from PA
Is there a chance you're falling victim to "damping off"? It's where otherwise healthy seedlings suddenly become weak and die. It's caused by a fungus that attacks the plants. I've had this happen myself.
Over-damp soil and lack of airflow can lead to the problem. Try not to water the foliage when watering, and keep covers ventilated if you're using them. Making sure your seedlings are properly thinned out can help too. There are home-made sprays that use chamomile tea or hydrogen peroxide to help prevent the fungus, if you wanted to search for them. I've read a sprinking of cinnamon powder on the soil can work too. Good luck with your gardening!
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When slicing tomatoes or peppers, I always slice them on a paper towel. Any and all seeds that fall onto the paper towel, I set aside for a couple of weeks and let dry out and then bury the entire paper towel in my flower bed and water as I water other plants in existing bed. Within a few days, seeds will sprout and voila! You have vegetable plants.
By Sharon from Florida
I wish I lived in Florida with your long growing season. Have you ever done this with pumpkins? After we carved our pumpkins, I took most of the seeds and roasted them but all the ones on the ground I picked up and placed in the soil. I don't know if they will come up or not. I hope so. (11/02/2006)
By TC in MO
Sharon, thanks so much for telling us how to do this! So easy and simple! (11/05/2006)
Thanks, I'll try that. (11/01/2007)
By ramona I
Many thanks, Sharon, for this very handy tip. The price of vegetables is expensive so I will definitely give this a go. I am moving to a small flat soon. Would it be possible to grow these in pots? If so, when is the best time to sow? Also, how long do they take to grow? Once again, a wonderful idea by ThriftyFun members. (10/12/2009)