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2 questions re: starting seeds

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2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  lisaphoto on 1/28/2012, 3:19 pm

1st question: What is the harm in starting seeds before recommended if you don't set them out until the date they are ready as long as you can keep them healthy indoors

2nd question: I recently purchased a grow light but don't really know what to do with it. It shows how to attach it under a cabinet, but says it is a portable grow light. Any suggestions on how to hang it from something other than my cabinets, and do I need to be able to raise and lower it?

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  sfg4uKim on 1/28/2012, 4:47 pm

1. Of course I don't know if you mean "indoors" as growing them by a window, in a greenhouse or under a grow light. It's been my experience that plants kept indoors (without the benefit of a grow light) tends to get "leggy" and I've found that, especially leaf crops, they don't have as much flavor as they do with supplemental lighting. Also if you are talking about growing them in a seed cell, they can become rootbound and not do quite as well when you DO transplant them. I imagine WHAT you intend to grow might also be affected. But hey, with such a low cost for a couple of seeds, why NOT give it a try?

2. You can use the search function for more info on Grow Lights, but here's one thread from the Forum: Stands for Grow Lights

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  Furbalsmom on 1/28/2012, 9:40 pm

1st question: What is the harm in starting seeds before recommended if you don't set them out until the date they are ready as long as you can keep them healthy indoors
I think the key here is keep them healthy indoors. You probably would need to up pot them so they will not get rootbound if they have to stay indoors too long.
I started mine too early last year and had tomatoes, peppers and eggplant that were blooming inside before the soil warmed enough to get them outdoors.

2nd question: I recently purchased a grow light but don't really know what to do with it. It shows how to attach it under a cabinet, but says it is a portable grow light. Any suggestions on how to hang it from something other than my cabinets, and do I need to be able to raise and lower it?
I built a seedling station, but of course I got carried away, mine is 6 feet long, but the useable length is 4 1/2 ft, and it has two shelves for seedlings, plus a top. I have cup screws to hang the light chains from, so that I can raise and lower my lights. You really want the lights to be no more than two or three inches above the leaves inorder to provide enough light.

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  Lindacol on 1/28/2012, 10:23 pm

@lisaphoto wrote:2nd question: I recently purchased a grow light but don't really know what to do with it. It shows how to attach it under a cabinet, but says it is a portable grow light. Any suggestions on how to hang it from something other than my cabinets, and do I need to be able to raise and lower it?



Josh just posted a how to with video:

http://squarefoot.creatingforum.com/t9897-made-a-plant-light-stand

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  lisaphoto on 1/29/2012, 9:53 am

I just saw Josh's video. I'm thinking I might return the grow light I bought and do a light fixture like he has if I can find a way to jerryrig a way to use what I have without attaching it permanently from the cabinets. I may look for some command strips or something.

The reason I want to start plant earlier is the fact that nothing ever got of decent size in years past, especially tomatoes. I only used window light and peat pellets though. I guess I'm not out too much $ if I waste a couple seeds.

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  Lavender Debs on 1/29/2012, 10:23 am

In March I am going to want to set out my first squares of salad and greens. I have started a tray of spinaches, kale, mustards and different salad greens in a south window. Because I want to be ready to live almost off grid, I do not want to use grow lights or heat mats. (I'm not a prepper, just poor by suburban standards) Seeds generally like a warmer temperature to sprout than they need to thrive. Once my tray has sprouted they will be carried to the back deck outside the kitchen door for full light during the day and brought back in at night. This works well for me as long as it doesn't snow. I do have a large, full spectrum SADDS light if we have many freezing days.

When March comes my plants have already hardened off because of their daily trip outside. Closer to March 17th (a traditional big spring planting day for me) the tray will spend more time outside over night in the cold-frame.

Since I work from home I have time for this kind of putzing. In January I use a starting mix and plastic cells for starting seeds. Come April when it isn't as cold out, I'll use my tool that makes soil cubes from a mix I keep in a tote on the deck. Making soil cubes is better for the sprouts BUT it requires me to stand outside with a bucket of mud to press out cubes....wha-whaa, I get too cold and have too much arthritis for that job in January.

The video (my household works nights, so I whisper without realizing it). Mostly this is a "picture" of my super simple, low-budget seed starting. The credits at the end tell what I planted.



Debs....who just went to Sunnyside and bought a bunch more spring seed. (Hello, my name is Deb and I am a hopeless garden-a-holic)

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  Windsor.Parker on 2/5/2012, 1:01 pm

[/quote]Lavender Debs"
...Come April when it isn't as cold out, I'll use my tool that makes soil cubes from a mix I keep in a tote on the deck. Making soil cubes is better for the sprouts...[/quote]

Deb, got my soil cubes going yesterday! This is my first time making them, and now we have 30 or so cubes (some good looking ones) nearly ready for seed.
IMO they should warm up first!
Then (I'm thinkin'), start some peppers, greens, peas, more broccoli, more cabbage, brussels sprouts, and any others you'd likely try.


Last edited by Windsor.Parker on 2/5/2012, 1:05 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : gettin' the quote right...)

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

Post  camprn on 2/5/2012, 1:17 pm

I gotta get me a soil cube form! Yes I do!! albino

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Re: 2 questions re: starting seeds

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