( Updated April 12, 2017 ) Spring isn’t here yet, but the gardening bug has arrived! Today I want to share a really easy, fast and great way to start seeds, a method we have been using for quite a few years! It reduces the time of seed germination by 70%, and more than doubles the success rate as well!
We discovered this method from an older book- Planning The Organic Vegetable Garden a few years ago. It made such a huge difference, we just LOVE it. I will give you all the details here of when and how to use it, plus some tips we have learned along the way!
And feel free to download this pretty (and free ) printable planting calendar when you start the seeds! =)
This method is called pre-sprouting, or pre-germination in the book.
All you need is a plastic or glass container with lid. Clear ones will make it easier to see through, but not required as the seeds don’t need light to send out roots.
Put a piece of paper towel or white paper on the bottom of the container, add water till the paper towel is thoroughly moist, but no puddles of water. Sprinkle seeds in groups on the damp paper towel, close the lid, and make a note to yourself what type of seeds are where, especially when you have seeds that look identical, for example- broccoli, kale and cauliflower.
Start checking on them the next day. If the seeds are really fresh, some will germinate in as little as 1 day! The fastest ones include everything in the cabbage family – bok choi, broccoli, kale, cauliflower etc, and lettuce. The slowest ones are pepper, eggplant, fennel, celery, which may take 5+ days. The rest such as tomato, beets, chard, squash, onions, will take about 3 days.
It is important to have pots and soil ready to go.
On the next page we will look at how to plant these sprouted seeds, and one thing that you should NOT copy the nurseries!
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