Starting Seeds in the Greenhouse
Have you been putting off growing plants of your own because you don’t know how to really care for your seeds, start seeds or you don’t know how to start seeds? Well, late winter and early spring are the seasons for starting seeds in the greenhouse. You should also know that you can start seeds in the greenhouse anytime of the year. Because you control the greenhouse environment you can start tomatoes in the fall and fresh tomatoes will sit on your table in the winter months when you keep on working with them!
If it is really early say December or January, you can start some seeds that take the longest to grow and be ready for transplanting such as the: cabbage, broccoli, cauliflower and similar long growing plants. These plants take at least six weeks before you can transplant them into a larger container for continued growing in the greenhouse.
The mix that you use to plant your seeds should be a mixture of sand, loam, peat moss, or other materials that are well draining but supporting for the roots to make a ‘stable’ appears on each seed. You can add perlite, or vermiculite to any type of soil to loosen it up as needed. You can add shell to the bottom of containers that don’t seem to be draining well as your transplants grow larger.
Plants that will require about eight weeks before you can plant them in another container, otherwise known as transplanting; include the tomato, pepper and the eggplant. Get started on your tomato or pepper seeds as early as February and by May you can plant them outdoors for a good growing season.
How are you going to plant the seeds in your greenhouse? Starting with small seed containers or small peat pots, fill them about ¾ of the way full with your soil mixture. Put the seed into the soil and cover lightly with another small, very small amount of soil. Misting your soil and seeds will bring germination about. It is equally as important to keep the soil mixture warm to promote germination for many seed types as well, although some seeds to need the cool temperatures to promote germination.
Covering your soil with a clear plastic will keep the moisture in the soil until germination occurs. Even if the seed take ten days to germinate the soil will be moist and preparing the seed for growth.
What is really amazing is that tomatoes can start germination in as little as six days, and peppers will start germination in just ten days. If you have a long growing season, in the summer outdoors or winter in the greenhouse, you can grow any type of plant you want watching the germination and then transplanting, as they get larger.
As your seeds start to grow into seedlings and then to mature plants, you don’t want to transplant your plants outdoors until they are at least six inches tall or taller. Plants that are a good dark green are healthy and ready to be planted outdoors. If your plants are a little yellow looking you might want to give then a few more days or weeks in the greenhouse with extra sunlight and care before moving these plants outdoors.