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Started seed too soon?

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Started seed too soon?

Post  littlejo on 2/28/2013, 8:05 am

I started most of my seeds on or about Feb. 1. My last frost date is near Mar. 5.
Here are some of the tomatoes in Solos.

Here are some of my other plants. I chose not to up-pot into solos because of not having room

Here is my problem.


The above pic is a pepper plant. Do you think that is a bloom? I've got at least a week til I could possibly plant outside. Should I pinch this out or just leave them and see what happens? Should I up-pot in a hurry? I have 3 peppers that are doing this. They are only about 6 in. tall!
Thanks, Jo


Last edited by littlejo on 2/28/2013, 8:08 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : spelling! grammer!)

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  camprn on 2/28/2013, 8:43 am

Jo, in regards to the pepper plants... they are 6 " tall and one stem ? If that is the case, go ahead and pinch the topmost growing tip and the flower buds. If you have the plants in small cell pot, you should probably pot up, because you NEED to not set these out too early and the longer the roots are in a small pot the plant will be stressed.

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  bwaynef on 2/28/2013, 10:25 am

@littlejo wrote:I started most of my seeds on or about Feb. 1. My last frost date is near Mar. 5.

I'm not questioning the validity of that statement, but I'm shooting for closer to the beginning of April, ...so where are you getting your information? I'd expect you to be a couple of weeks earlier, but not 3-4 weeks.


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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  cheyannarach on 2/28/2013, 10:48 am

Oh my goodness! You must be taking some great care of them! You just gave me a vision of what my kitchen should look like come April, what was I thinking, lol! I will still have 2 months to go in April!

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  CapeCoddess on 2/28/2013, 10:54 am

This guy, Ray, grows a lot of his veggies indoors so I learned to plant indoor seeds early if I feel like it. Here's his vid on pruning his pepper plants:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3XmfoASl_Lg

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  quiltbea on 2/28/2013, 11:25 am

I love the idea of starting early indoors, but I worry about them growing too large. The larger they are transplanted outdoors the harder on the little plant with transplant shock, from what I understand. I've never waited too long so don't have first hand experience with transplanting already-blooming veggies but heard that its not a good thing.
Anyone had any experience with this?

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  mapspringer on 2/28/2013, 12:28 pm

My mother-in-law has always been in favor of purchasing more mature container-grown plants/bushes/trees to plant out, because their root system is already bigger and stronger, and they are "hardier" than little guys. I've found this to be true for things like berry bushes and trees, so I can't imagine it being different for veggie plants. Now, as far as blooming as a start, I'm with CC (shared video) in that you wouldn't want them trying to push energy to flowers/fruit before going in the ground.

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  Pollinator on 2/28/2013, 1:07 pm

@bwaynef wrote:
@littlejo wrote:I started most of my seeds on or about Feb. 1. My last frost date is near Mar. 5.

I'm not questioning the validity of that statement, but I'm shooting for closer to the beginning of April, ...so where are you getting your information? I'd expect you to be a couple of weeks earlier, but not 3-4 weeks.

I doubt that March 5 will have warm enough soil. I'm not far from you and we are expecting temps in the 20s on the 3rd and 4th of March.

You really need to pot up! Otherwise, I think you are in fine shape. Just wait until the soil warms up a bit - at least a couple more weeks.

As to de-budding the peppers, your choice. If you leave them, you'll likely have early peppers, but somewhat smaller plants. If you remove the buds, they'll continue to grow, and be larger plants when they fruit. You might want to try some each way and see what happens.

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  littlejo on 2/28/2013, 5:38 pm

Pollinator, I don't know exactly where you are in SC. I'm in Cottageville, which is 18 miles east of Walterboro
Charleston, SC is Mar 9
Savannah, Ga is Mar 1
I figure I'm about, sort of, 1/2 way between the 2.
I got that info here:
http://www.almanac.com/content/frost-chart-united-states

Also, I've looked at the trees, what is blooming and what is not, and some old time weather/garden folklore. Types of trees have their own frost, fruit trees, redbud, etc.(They are all in bloom plus the azaelas, tuplip trees, etc) The last frost of the season is dogwood winter, they have their buds ready to pop, and we are expecting snow flurries on the 3rd.
Spring may arrive next week or so, and then within 2 to 3 weeks it will probably be in the 80's, and we will be wishing for some more winter.
Different sites have different frost data, but I do know that April will hit the 90's.
I won't put them in the ground til I know for sure.(Hoping to get a greenhouse, maybe if the forest in the house grows!)
Jo


Last edited by littlejo on 2/28/2013, 5:41 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Senior moment)

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  littlejo on 2/28/2013, 9:35 pm

@camprn wrote:Jo, in regards to the pepper plants... they are 6 " tall and one stem ? If that is the case, go ahead and pinch the topmost growing tip and the flower buds. If you have the plants in small cell pot, you should probably pot up, because you NEED to not set these out too early and the longer the roots are in a small pot the plant will be stressed.
Thanks Camp, only 1 stem! I measured 2, shortest and tallest. The tallest is just a little less than 6in and the shortest(with blooms) is only 3.5 in.

CC Thanks for the video. I would never have trimmed my pepper plants that much! But will try something to have my own home grown transplants

I checked the seed starting times in the ANSFG book and found, peppers-7 weeks before last frost- transplant 2 weeks after. Tomatoes- 6 weeks before last frost-transplant week of last frost. It's only been 4 weeks since I started these seeds! Only thing I've done was water with worm tea! I guess I should hold off on the worm tea next year.
Jo

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  llama momma on 2/28/2013, 9:48 pm

Oh darn that awful worm tea!
Laughing

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  johnsonjlj on 3/1/2013, 5:31 am

Littlejo, I'm having the same problem! I planted my seeds about 6 weeks ago, knowing that we planted our garden the first weekend in March last year (my first garden). Needless to say, I have blooms on my squash plants and freezing weather predicted for 2-4 nights during the next week, depending upon who's forecast you look at. Shocked I'm hoping to plant Wednesday or Thursday next week when the night temps get above 40 degrees.


This photo was taken almost 2 weeks ago.

I'm in north Florida and my last average frost date is about March 8. According to the info on Dave's Garden website (he gets his info from the National Climactic Data Center), when I put in your zip code the average last frost date is March 28.

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  floyd1440 on 3/1/2013, 5:57 am

@quiltbea wrote:I love the idea of starting early indoors, but I worry about them growing too large. The larger they are transplanted outdoors the harder on the little plant with transplant shock, from what I understand. I've never waited too long so don't have first hand experience with transplanting already-blooming veggies but heard that its not a good thing.
Anyone had any experience with this?

My neighbor always buys transplants and last year was the first year I ever started my own from seeds. He had some tomatoes and I had a variety he wanted to try some I gave him 6 tomatoes plants.

The odd thing was that they out grew his store bought and more mature plants. So was it a better medium, quality of seeds, or they adapt more readily. This is were experience comes in handy......

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  bwaynef on 3/1/2013, 9:37 am

@littlejo wrote:I started most of my seeds on or about Feb. 1. My last frost date is near Mar. 5.

According to the frost dates given @ Daves Garden (http://davesgarden.com/guides/freeze-frost-dates/index.php?q=29435 <--I think that link works)


Temperature 10% 20% 30% 40% 50% 60% 70% 80% 90%
Spring 32° Apr 16 Apr 9 Apr 5 Apr 1 Mar 28 Mar 24 Mar 20 Mar 14 Mar 6

I read that as 10% of the time, the last frost date is March 6 or before. 50% of the time, the last frost date is March 28 or before. 90% of the time, the last frost date is April 16 or before.

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Re: Started seed too soon?

Post  littlejo on 3/1/2013, 11:22 am

I have compared data from Dave's site and several others. I suppose the almanac site used the 90% numbers.
I will not rely on any of these folks 100%. If I put any of my plants out early, I will put a plastic tent/hoop of sorts over them.
I do want to plant early so maybe I can get ahead of the bugs. The field farmers are planting most things next wk, including corn. My eggplant and okra and sw. potatoes won't go out til the soil is warm.

My pine trees are already in full bloom. In yrs past, my allergies would flare up, and I would have to go in house and turn on the air cond, but, this yr it is too cool for that, so, I think spring is here, and it will be a hot summer.

I trimmed all of my pepper plants back, except for the smallest one. I just want to see if I can get a pepper on a tiny plant. I up-potted all to larger cups and will continue re-potting til I can move them outside.

I plan on starting my other seeds in the house today, if poss. If I put out transplants instead of DS, maybe I can get ahead of the bugs.
Jo

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