Sunday, January 4, 2009

It's that time of year again...

...for seed ordering! I have been ordering seeds like crazy with grand plans to plant everything I order. Every year I order seeds in January, and start many of them inside in empty egg-cartons. Those foamy containers work great to start seeds in. I just poke holes in the bottom to create drainage, add some seed-starting mix to the egg-containers, put in the seeds, use a mister to water them, and put them on top of my fridge to get them close to the near-full spectrum fluorescent lights in the kitchen. Then I wait for them to sprout and when they are big enough, transplant them to bigger containers. By the end of February, I have a ton of containers with little plants in them just waiting to go outside.

Of course not everything I plant comes up or lives, but such is the life of a gardener. It is all about trying new stuff and seeing if I can get it to grow. Here is a list of my seeds for this year that I just ordered:

Tomatoes: Last year I grew 'Patio tomato', 'Heat wave', and 'Roma'. None of which I was overly excited about. 'Heat Wave' did great, but I thought the tomatoes tasted an awful like the store-bought kind. So this year I am going with more heirlooms and only a couple hybrids:

-Angora Super Sweet
-Texas Wild (I hear this one gets ginormous, so I will have to find a special location for it)
-Black Krim
-Yellow Pear
-Neves Azorean Red
-Red Zebra (this one more for an ornamental with the added bonus of being able to eat it!)

Other veggies and herbs:

-Tomatillo Toma Verde
-Basil, Sweet
-Cucumber Sweet Burpless Hybrid
-Sweet Pepper California Wonder
-Costa Rican Sweet Pepper
-Mesclun Sweet Salad Mix
-Lettuce Looseleaf Heatwave
-Monarda Bergamo (they say if you plant Monarda by your tomatoes, it improves their flavor. I am gonna test that theory...)

I am going to have to create a few new beds and extend the current veggie bed out to make room for the new veggies and herbs. I can always find some type of gardening activity to busy myself with - even in January ;)


Lori said...

I really like that old egg carton idea. I love the idea of being thrifty by starting plants from seed, but so far the one thing I've had success with from seed has been morning glories. This is much more disappointing when you consider the amount of money I've spent on seeds, only to be disappointed.

How often do you water when you start the seeds in the egg carton? Do you just mist them a few times a day?

Lee17 said...


I poke holes in the bottom of the egg carton, then fill it will miracle grow seed-staring mix (this stuff works GREAT for starting seeds), wet the soil, let it drain, then plant the seeds, mist them, cover them with plastic wrap or put in a big plastic bag, set it on top of the fridge (to give the seeds a warm place to sprout and to get them near the white flouresant light), and mist them with water every other day if they need it.

And wah-la! The seeds sprout. I have had great success sprouting seeds of all types like this. And, like you said - it's cheap! And re-uses those foamy egg-cartons instead of throwing them out ;)

Lori said...

Lee- Thanks for the detailed explanation! The next time I give seeds a try, I'm going to use this method. :)