Have you ever had the disappointment of your seeds not germinating? I know that I have, and it is a real source of discouragement. Or what about those seeds that take forever just to sprout? I consider myself a patient person, but some seeds have really pushed me to my limit with their sluggish sprouting rate. Over the years, I have learned a few tricks to improve the germination rate and speed of seeds.
Depending on where you live and what plants you are growing, it is getting close to seed starting time. I love this time of year, when I can start plants indoors to transplant them lovingly into my spring garden. Seed starting time means that garden planting time is just around the corner. No matter when seed starting time is for you, the tips below will help you avoid some common mistakes so that you can give your plants the best start possible.
Sprouts are seeds that have been germinated in water. They form a tiny root and shoot that can be consumed in its entirety. These baby plants are a nutritious food you can grow all year round – no soil needed. Some of the most popular types of seeds to sprout include radish, alfalfa, pea, sunflower, and mung bean. Broccoli sprouts have also become increasingly popular due to their health properties.
Potatoes are one of those staple foods that you should always have on hand. They last for a long time (especially when stored properly), are super filling, and can be incorporated into a wide variety of dishes. Plus, they are incredibly easy to grow, even in a tiny space like a balcony, porch, or small yard. All you need is some soil and a few five-gallon buckets, and you are well on your way to a bountiful potato harvest.
If you’re feeling the stress of current events, you’ve probably spared a thought to the security of your food supply. What would happen if there was nothing on the shelves at the grocery store next week? Though that is unlikely to happen, it is still important to be prepared.
Hardening off your seedlings is the best thing you can do to prepare them for the harsh, unforgiving outside world that is so different from the regulated environment they have been in for the entirety of their short lives. Instead of simply sticking them in the ground (which is just setting them up for failure), take the time to acclimate them to things like wind, rain, and inconsistent sunlight to help them grow stronger and withstand environmental extremes. Follow these simple steps to harden off your plants and help them thrive.