Beginner’s Guide to Starting Seeds Indoors
NParks has recently launched another distribution of seed packets and we’re sure many of you are excited to get started! If you’re not sure how to start, fret not, this guide will take you step by step from seed to harvest, quickly and easily.
Indeed, growing your own seedlings from seed offers you more flexibility and control over your garden. You can choose your favorite varieties, grow the number of plants you need, and work within the planting dates that suit your growing area.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to start growing your own seeds.
Step 1: Gather your seeds start pack
- Seed starting pots or cell trays (you can even use egg cartons!)
- Plant markers
- Seed starting mix
- Seed tray with humidity dome (or use any DIY drainage tray with plastic wrap)
- Spray bottle or squirt bottle filled with water
Step 2: Fill your pots or trays with seed starting mix
Dump your seed starting mix into a large tub or bucket, pour in a generous amount of water, and stir it up with a trowel. As the seed starting mix starts to absorb the moisture, add more water as needed. Mix till the starting mix is uniformly damp.
Step 3: Sow your seeds
Place two to four seeds on the surface of the seed starting mix, and gently press the seeds down so they’re nestled in nicely.
If your seeds are very small, you may leave them uncovered. However, if your seeds are larger or they require darkness to germinate, cover them with a layer of seed starting mix equal to their height, usually 1/4 inch to 1/2 inch.
Step 4: Label your newly planted seeds.
Label each pot with the type of seed and its sowing date so that you will not forget what you planted.
Step 5: Keep your seeds moist and warm.
The goal is to keep the soil moist but not soggy. Too much water will encourage mold. Thus it is best to mist your seeds with water. As the seedlings grow and the roots begin to grow into the soil, water the plants from underneath by adding water to a tray of water so the roots can draw in moisture. Be sure not to allow the soil to become waterlogged or the seedlings will drown. Once the seedlings become established, let the soil dry slightly between watering. Within a couple of days to a couple of weeks, the seeds will germinate.
Step 6: Give your new seedlings light.
At this stage, the newly germinated seedlings need light. Move the seedlings to the sunniest spot in your house, nearest to a window. Continue to keep the mix moist, but not overly wet. Seedlings should be watered once a day or every other day, depending on how much sun and heat they get.
Step 7:Transplant the seedlings outdoors when they’re ready.
After your seedlings develop their first set of leaves, they are ready to be transplanted. Transplant the seedling into a larger container filled with potting mix - be careful when doing so! Hold it by the cotyledons (the first leaves that appear) and try not to manhandle the tiny roots. You may also consider using a diluted solution of all-purpose fertilizer. Add fertilizer appropriately, don’t be obsessed with adding the fertilizer - more might not always be the best! In a couple of months, you can enjoy the fruits (and veggies) of your labor!
Hope this guide is helpful for you to start your own seeds! Don’t forget to continuously pamper and shower your seedlings with love from the beginning till the very end. Happy gardening!