How to Seed Start Tomatoes and Peppers Indoors
Video: How to Seed Start Tomatoes and Peppers
This video article will teach you how to start seed tomato and pepper indoors for your garden. It will cover all aspects of the process from materials to methods. Starting seeds indoors is easy once you buy the essential supplies and give it a try. It is not as difficult as it may seem and it really does save you money. You can grow tomatoes and peppers as well as other vegetables for pennies per plant. When you buy a tomato at a store it may cost you several dollars. The materials for starting seeds indoors cost as much as 5 or 6 store bought tomatoes or peppers. Give it a try! And remember you can use the cell flats and seeds trays year after year. You can save hundreds of dollars in planting costs over several years.
Video: How to Seed Start Tomatoes and Peppers
This video demonstrates how to start tomato and pepper seeds indoors. It covers starting mix, trays, seeds, watering and methods to plant the seeds.
Overview of Starting Seeds Indoors
The video presents all the details but here is a basic overview of the requirements.
All seeds should be started in a seed starting mix. Seed starting mix is typically sterile and contains no soil products. This creates a disease free base for your seeds to germinate.
Seed starting mix typically comes dry. You should moisten the mix before you fill your seed cells. This is an essential step to ensure your cells will wick water up from the watering tray.
You do need light. You don’t have to use indoor grow lights but should make sure you have a south facing window. Your seeds really need 6 to 10 hours of full sun or 10 to 14 hours of light from grow lights. Less light does work.
The seed trays and supplies are inexpensive and can be found at any do-it-yourself store or at a local nursery.
You can use your seed trays to start seeds all season long. For instance lettuce and spinach enjoy cool weather. Tomatoes and peppers enjoy warm weather. Cucumbers tend to like the heat too and can be started at different times in the summer. Basil can be started several times during the season and in the Fall you can start lettuce and spinach again. You really can save a lot of money.
When the weather gets warm you don’t need to keep the seeds indoors to start. They can sit right outside in a sunny area.
Cost of Seed Starting Supplies
$4-$6 Bag of Seed Starting Mix
$5-$9 Seed Starting Cells and Flat
$1-$3 A Pack of Tomato Seeds
$1-$3 A Pack of Pepper Seeds
$Free A Southern Facing Window For Sunlight
$??? Grow Lights Vary on Size and Design (They Aren’t Needed!)
Considering a pepper and tomato transplant can cost anywhere from $2 to $5, you can save a lot of money by starting them yourself. This method also works for most other vegetables and the seed cells and flats can be used year after year. Give it a try!
So What Can I Start in Seed Trays? Cool Weather Crops
Vegetables prefer different growing conditions and are primarily planted based on temperature preferences. The ‘Cool Weather Crops’ can be seed started early before you might start your tomatoes and peppers. Cool weather vegetables typically grow quickly and can handle a light frost. Here are some great cool weather vegetables and basic seed starting directions.
Lettuces: They love the cool weather and should be started 3 seeds per cell. If you are growing for full head size, gentle separate the plants and plant one per hole. If you what to cut leaves for smaller leaf lettuces, you can plant all three per hole.
Kales: Kales love the cold and can survive the Winter. Plant 2 kale seeds per cell and plant 1 plant per hole in the garden. They get large and you don’t want 2 plants in the same planting hole.
Radishes: They are cool weather crops but can’t be started in cell trays but the can go directly in the garden.
Leeks: The take a long time to mature and should be stared indoors. Plant 3 seed per cell and divide them into single plants before planting outdoors.
Other vegetables that can be started in seed sells like lettuce are: arugula, endive, mustard greens and bak choy.
So What Can I Start in Seed Trays? Warm Weather Crops
Well, if you have cool weather crops, you have to have warm weather crops. Tomatoes and Peppers need warmer nights and days and should be started 6-8 weeks before last frost date. But there are also vegetables that really like the warmth and can also be started in seed trays. These plants should NOT be started 6-8 weeks ahead of time. They grow too fast and will out grow the cell. You can start the following warm weather crops on the expected last day of frost. They only need about 3 weeks before planted into the garden.
Cucumbers: They need the heat. Only plant one seed per cell about 1/2 inch deep. They are big seeds and grow fast. You can also start them in 8-12 ounce cups and in that case you would put two seeds per cup.
Beans: Just like cucumbers.
Melons: Just like beans and cucumbers.
Sunflowers: Just like melons, beans and cucumbers.
You get the point. The larger seeds go 1 seed per cell and they do grow fast. When you remove them from the seed trays be very careful not to disturb the roots. Gently place and press them into the planting hole in your garden and water nicely.
So What Else Can I Start in My Seed Trays?
Herbs are expensive to buy in the stores. You can save a lot of money by just starting basil in seed trays. Do you know there are dozens of varieties of basil?
Oregano and Thyme: They are really small as seeds. Plant 10-30 per cell tray. You can start them 6-8 weeks before last frost. They can be transplanted as a bunch. You don’t thin oregano and thyme into single plants. Just plant them as if the cell is one plant.
Chives: Plant 5 to 10 chive seeds per cell and follow the oregano and thyme directions.
Basil: Unlike the above, basil needs warm weather. Basil can be started indoors about 2 weeks before last frost date. you can put 5 to 10 seeds per tray and gently break the plug in half when you plant it in the garden. This will give you 2 planting clumps of basil.
Did you know there is lime basil, lemon basil, purple basil, ruffled leaf basil, bush basil, cinnamon basil and many more kinds. Don’t just plant 1 type.
So, are you ready to start tomatoes in your home ? Mean that time you may check our awesome post on lawn care, which you will love for sure .