It’s official — I have started my gardening for 2015. Of course living in Michigan means I’ve started some seeds indoors, as the ground is still snow ridden and cold, but this is a definite sign that spring is close.
Last year I bought all of my starter plants except for my beets, carrots, scallions, and peas. This year I am hoping to start most of the plants inside and then plant seeds directly in the ground for everything else. If my seedlings don’t sprout I can always buy plants, but I really wanted to give this a shot.
My first step in this process was to figure out which plants to start and when. I went through all the seed packets in my bin and sorted them by how long they took to germinate. Then I read up on each one to find out the suggested lead time, compiled a spreadsheet with this information — wow, can you tell that I was an office worker for many years — anyway, after I had everything written out and organized, I pulled out the seeds I was going to start with, assembled all my materials, and went to work.
As a kid I remember starting marigold seeds in cut down milk cartons my father gave me. Things have certainly come a long way and I have only learned about a few of the options for starting seedlings. That’s good though, because if I knew any more I might be dangerous or seriously overwhelmed and confused, and at this point I’m borderline confused as it is.
So, I chose two separate types of planting pots for my seedlings and am going to hope for the best. I’m hoping that by trying different types of planting techniques, I will increase my chances of success, or if I were a pessimist, increase my possible ways to fail–but let’s have a little faith here.
The first method I tried was to use these little jiffy pots.
Pretty cool really.
You just add water and watch them expand.
Then open them up a bit, put in the seeds and top off with some dirt.
Quick and easy.
The second method was to fill some paper-type pots with a garden mix and plant the seeds.
Again, easy and quick.
The plants I started were two types of tomatoes, yellow peppers from a package, and two types of peppers from seeds I collected from peppers last year. I also started some marigolds — just for the fun of it. I figured if I could start marigold seedlings when I was kid, I should certainly be able to do it again as an adult. If they don’t grow, then maybe it’s not me, but rather the method. Think of them as my placebo — is that the right analogy?
Anyway, in the next couple of weeks I should see some seedlings, keep your fingers crossed. Until then, I’ll keep my eye on the planting schedule. My next planting will take place in two weeks – squash and pickles. Can’t wait.
I love getting my hands back in the dirt. The smell, the feel — it all just gives me a sense of calm that can’t be compared to cleaning house, scrubbing floors, washing clothes, or making dinner, and for this I am — Simply Grateful.