refresher course: thinking about starting seeds

seed starting 2

IT’S TOO EARLY HERE to start anything for the vegetable garden but leeks and onions, as I mentioned in the March chores, but it’s never too soon to brush up on seed-starting timing and tactics. To that end, a little refresher course:


  1. I couldn’t help but chuckle at one of your earliest problems — who will hold the camera for the demo slide show? I faced that similar issue, and I found myself using tools to keep my hands from getting dirty and then trying to figure out which hand was best able to hold the camera. Once I was finished with the photos, then it was both hands into the seed starting mix. Be well.

    1. Margaret says:

      Margi! How sweet of you to be NUMBER ONE to notice that we are hard at work over here, trying to update things and make it easier to dip into the giant archive. Thank you much.

  2. Jim says:

    Wow. Im awaiting my almost-ripe Black From Tula tomato here any day now in Phoenix. Its small, and has cracking – but its ALMOST RIPE. Yes, the plant is having issues with what I suspect to be psyllids, but its nice to know that I may harvest the first tomato before others are even starting their seeds!

    1. Margaret says:

      Well, Jim, you have now made us “regular people” up in the boring North very jealous. :) Good for you. You win the race to the finish line!

  3. Brenda says:

    It is too early to start seeds for the outdoor garden here in the north unless you have a greenhouse, high tunnel or other season extension. I’ m thinking about setting up a small tunnel over my raised bed so I can start some cold hardy greens.

  4. Jim says:

    Well, don’t be too jealous – the plants aren’t even looking as good as they did yesterday! They are starting to all get leaf curl and a “feathery” appearance, plus the fruit is small and I even have one catfaced – so I’m afraid that the bugs have given them a virus. AARGH. I have insecticidal soap and neem at the ready – but I fear I may have jumped on this problem just a tad bit late. You can see all the gory details over at my blog if you click my name!

  5. Benita says:

    Love the new look and ease of A Way to Garden–great job!

    In Bellingham, WA (7b), I started chard, kale, salad mix, cabbage, and spinach in my unheated sunny mudroom on February 13th and they all popped by month’s end. Have you all been the The Farmer’s Almanac site, entered your zip code, and got the word on when you can start seeds, transplant seeds and direct sow seeds for your specific area? Must confess that they seem early by about two weeks, but we have had a mild winter here.


  6. Wellywoman says:

    Just discovered your blog. I live in Wales, in the UK and we’ve had some beautiful early spring sunshine. I’ve got broad beans and peas in my cold frame waiting to go up to my allotment. I’ve also got some celeriac seeds on my windowsill. It’s getting very busy now with all the seed sowing.

    1. Margaret says:

      Hi, Wellywoman, and so nice to hear what’s up in Wales (where one of my favorite gardens in the world, Powis Castle,is…I love it because of the steep site, as I garden perched on a hill, too (not quite so grand or big!). :) Interesting that you will transplant your board beans and peas – not direct-sow them. Love hearing all these different ways of doing familiar things.

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