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Prepping for the Fall Garden

In spring or fall, germinating seeds inside will give your plants a good start in guarding against weather extremes and birds.

It doesn’t matter if the seeds you are starting are going to be making their way outdoors once germinated or if they are going to be additions to your indoor garden—starting seeds inside is the best way to ensure success. The tiny seeds and seedlings do not do well with harsh weather changes and the heat we’ve been having lately or excessive rain can prevent them from growing.

There is also the problem of birds getting into the seeds as a food source.

There are many commercial helpers you can buy to make germinating seeds an easy project. Peat pellets that come with a miniature hothouse require nothing more than adding water to the seed and peat and covering with the supplied lid. Some water, high-quality soil, sunlight and time are all that you need.

Like plants, seeds like to be kept moist and a good drainage system in the pot is necessary so they do not get too much water. There is no solution to them getting too dry, though; just don’t forget to water them.

Don’t count on all of the seeds sprouting even if you have purchased seeds from a reputable source. For this reason, make sure you plant more of each seed than the desired number of plants you want.

As the seedlings begin to sprout, continue to keep them moist and turn them regularly to create even sun exposure. When the leaves start to come out you can begin the process of transplanting.

Whether you are going to be growing the plants indoors or outdoors it is the same procedure. Gently take the new seedling with the roots and plant it in a new pot or directly into the ground.