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Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

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Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  petals1973 on 7/27/2011, 5:31 pm

I was looking at my fall list of things to plant & a lot of them say you should start them Aug 1-Aug 15. I am mainly talking about broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, kohlrabi & things like that. I got this list from the A&M website for my area. My concern is the heat. It is still 104 here and I wonder if the seeds would even sprout. Do I plant them directly in the SFG boxes or do you sprout them indoors? Should I put them in seed trays outside in the shade? I'm really uncertain about this.

My other question is that the list says to plant broccoli transplants Aug 20. Won't it still be too hot for the broccoli then & does it only take 15 days to grow from seed to a transplant size?

Also the extension agent said that I should plant my Tomatoes in February! Um does that mean seeds or transplants & if it is transplants when should I start the seed? How longs does it take to get nice sized seedlings?

I have a million other questions but I'm trying to focus on a little at a time.

Thanks for any help you can give

Margarita
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Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  GloriaG on 7/28/2011, 12:30 am

Hi petals1973,

I live fairly close to you just north of the DFW airport.

I started some of my broccoli seed inside on July 19th. I'll wait another week to start the rest because I won't have enough squares available at one time. It can take up to 20 days for the seeds to germinate although it usually takes a lot less. Right now, my seedlings are about 1/2" tall. I probably won't transplant them into the garden until the end of August. I'd like them to be a good sturdy 5" tall.

Our weather is usually good for quite a while in the fall (last frost date isn't until November 15th) so if you start most of your fall plants inside now - where this excessive heat doesn't affect them, you can have your plants ready when the weather cools down enough to transplant outside.

Regarding tomatoes - I grow two crops per year. I plant seeds for the Spring crop around February 1 inside. Again, I grow the seedlings until they are a good 6"+ tall before I transplant them into the garden. Then, I protect them from any cold/wet/nasty weather with those green "plant blankets" you can find at all the garden shops.

I just transplanted the Fall crop into the garden last weekend. They are a healthy 6" tall right now. I am protecting these plants from the heat/excess sun with a light shade cloth. I expect them to keep producing right through the late fall by using the green "plant blankets" on them when it gets cold. Last year I picked my last tomatoes for New Year's Eve.

Hope this helps, Gloria

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Re: Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  petals1973 on 7/28/2011, 1:29 am

Thanks for the info Gloria. Do you have grow lights or are you lucky enough to have adequate light indoors?
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Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  GloriaG on 7/28/2011, 1:45 am

Hi Margarita,

I have my seedlings in a window that has a 2-bulb fluorescent fixture over it. I also wrapped some cardboard with tinfoil and stood it up on the inside (toward the house) to help reflect the light onto the seedlings. I think they need as much light as possible.

I start my seeds in those little jiffy peat pellets then transplant them into 3" peat pots when they're about 1" to 2" tall. They stay in the peat pots until I transplant them outside. I have found that once I put the seedlings into the 3" pots, watering with a quarter strength fertilizer (like fish emulsion) about every 3rd day works best for me.

Good luck!
Gloria

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Re: Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  petals1973 on 7/28/2011, 2:04 am

Gloria,

I think lighting will be my biggest challenge. I may just have to buy transplants if I can't get anything to sprout. I'm going to try that tinfoil trick & see how it goes.

Thanks again!

Margarita
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Re: Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  teamhillbilly on 8/2/2011, 7:27 am

Margarita

We start tomatoes from seed about x-mas,I use peat pellets then plant in 3 or 4" peat pots after you get the first set of true leaves.I start them indoors then move them to the green house in early Feb set in the garden around the end of Feb. keep a daily watch for frost until mid March cover if needed.Laughing Laughing hope that helps.What a Face For the fall garden I'm trying to keep my spring garden alive throught this hot summer so it will produce again this fall I'll have to replant squash and cucumbers again this month I'll start them inside a move to the garden in ealier Sep. you might need to give your plants a little shade to get them started:shock: Shocked Rolling Eyes

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Re: Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  BackyardBirdGardner on 8/2/2011, 9:42 am

Great posts, Gloria. You hit everything I would have. Hope to see all of you more active soon. Let's all hope this summer breaks soon!
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Re: Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  petals1973 on 8/2/2011, 3:57 pm

teamhillbilly wrote:Margarita

We start tomatoes from seed about x-mas,I use peat pellets then plant in 3 or 4" peat pots after you get the first set of true leaves.I start them indoors then move them to the green house in early Feb set in the garden around the end of Feb. keep a daily watch for frost until mid March cover if needed.Laughing Laughing hope that helps.What a Face For the fall garden I'm trying to keep my spring garden alive throught this hot summer so it will produce again this fall I'll have to replant squash and cucumbers again this month I'll start them inside a move to the garden in ealier Sep. you might need to give your plants a little shade to get them started:shock: Shocked Rolling Eyes

Thanks Teamhillbilly! I appreciate any help I can get. Some of my tomatoes are starting to fry a bit. I hope they make it through the summer because some of them are huge and covered with blooms and actually setting tomatoes in the heat. My Eggplants are taking a break. At least that is what I choose to believe. None of my squashes or gourds are setting but they still look healthy.

My biggest question right now is: Will this heat ever break? How many over 100 degree days are we up to now? 800?
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Re: Please help out a first timer! Seed questions

Post  teamhillbilly on 8/2/2011, 5:00 pm

I think I would be happy with 100 degrees this 110+ is killing me,my green house hit 132 yesterday and it's 122 now with vents open and fans running on high,Guess I've been thinking about installing AC in the greenhouse,might have to be done some day I do have a 3ton package unit in storage:shock: Laughing


Last edited by teamhillbilly on 8/2/2011, 5:01 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : fat finger)

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