Seeds

Those who count gardening as a hobby or a passion are itching to get going. Up here in the Northeast unless you have a greenhouse, there is still some wait time before you can start digging in the soil outdoors.

There are ways to get going though, and that includes starting seeds indoors. One of my goals was to start tomato plants for myself and to donate to our MG plant sale. I’ve always had good luck with seeds until this year. I planted one cherry and three regular type plants. The cherry tomatoes came up at a 50% rate, and the regular tomatoes did not come up at all. Hmm. Bad seeds or bad seed starting soil? I’ll never know, but I’ve replanted and will see how that goes.

After attending ‘another’ propagation webinar, I took some cuttings from winterberry, hydrangea, and forsythia plants. The results have been interesting, and the new leaves sprouting make me smile. It will be some time before I know whether they will actually develop into viable plants.

I also laid out my Yukon Gold seed potatoes to sprout. They must like their egg carton base and the sun from the window because they are sprouting.

A friend came by and helped me pot up dahlias, cannas, and crocosmia bulbs. The tables in the shed are full. I’m hoping this will provide them some time to wake up and be ready to take off when they do get planted outdoors. Regardless of their jumpstart, we had fun together getting dirty.

Seed starting isn’t for everyone. It takes a place to do it, table, lights, and it can get kind of messy. I don’t have a basement so I utilize my porch, but that involves plastic on the floor and the wall so that I don’t have to repaint and recarpet. It’s like anything else, some years I do it and some years I don’t. Life – it’s a journey.

Hope your journey is going well this last week in March. Stay well, stay happy, stay kind.

About Judy@NewEnglandGardenAndThread

Master Gardener who enjoys gardening, quilting, photography, and traveling.
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57 Responses to Seeds

  1. Murphyโ€™s Law says:

    Those sprouting plants are a joy to behold. And you have lilac buds! Be still my heart! ๐Ÿค— I admire people like you who can cultivate plant life from a seed. I need my plants to be well on their way to maturity to have any luck with them. Lol!

    Youโ€™ve got a good start on the growing season. How nice of your friend to get down and dirty with you and also share a few hours of friendship with you.

    I echo your wordsโ€ฆโ€ฆstay well, stay happy, stay kind.
    Ginger

    Liked by 2 people

    • I always enjoy watching seeds grow into a plant that can be put in the ground and then produce fruits and veggies for the table. I guess it remind me what is required to accomplish that and how much we owe all of our farmers. Yes, we had a wonderful morning unwrapping boxes of stored bulbs, pots, and a gigantic bag of potting soil. Have a good week!

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  2. Oddment says:

    Getting dirty with a friend! That sounds so good! All that new growth looks wonderful, and I congratulate you on getting so much done. You are so very right about this journey that is life, and the gardener understands that in a certain way. Indeed each year we do what we can; we can’t do more than that. Those new leaves and buds cheer us on. I am already eager to see the sprouts from those 54 bulbs!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I hope I can shares at least some success of all that planting with you as we move through April. I transplanted some flowers into their own individual cells, and a few aren’t looking so good. Gardening is kind of like ‘survival of the fittest,’ and although I don’t relish that, I have to accept it. Have a great week!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. You always inspire me with how much work you do before you can get out to plant in your garden. Iโ€™m not too successful with starting seeds indoors. Iโ€™m sure your garden will be beautiful!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I used to raise my how tomato plants because I couldn’t depend on the local garden centers to carry the variety I wanted. At my new house I have a large pot and put two cherry tomato plants in there and call it a day. I also have a pot for basil and parsley. Everything else I buy. I miss that joy of seeing the first sprout come out of the ground. It’s a miracle. One year I uncovered my tomatoes (they were indoors) too soon and one of my cats ate the plants. I was more careful after that.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Dan Antion says:

    It must feel good to see the garden starting. We used to get tomatoes that our neighbor started. Sadly, he passed away last year. Plants and seeds have been ordered, but we are a long way away from planting.

    Liked by 2 people

    • It is always a gift to receive plants from a friend. Good memory. Yes, we’re a long way for sure. I am lucky that I have these really ugly gigantic plastic covers that I can put over the tomato plants once I can put them in the ground. The plastic keeps them warm for a couple of weeks. They are several feet tall so I have to rig up some rebar and rope to keep them tied down or they lift off like a hot air balloon.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Dan Antion says:

        Sounds like an interesting challenge. I hope you share photos when you get to that point. I had once considered using clear(ish) plastic panels to enclose the porch outside of my shop and use the space as a mini-greenhouse. I’m not sure Maddie would approve.

        Liked by 1 person

  6. Ally Bean says:

    I’ve got some seeds started in little peat pots. They are sitting on our kitchen table where the get the right amount of sunshine. I have marigolds and sunflowers, that are doing great. But the herb starts are being stubborn, not really showing any enthusiasm at all. Fingers crossed they’ll come around soon.

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Eliza Waters says:

    Thanks for the inspiration to propagate winterberry… one can always use more of them, IMO. I’m also going to try willow as it is a good host plant for caterpillars, thus, birds. And yes, seeds, too. I tend to be neglectful and one day missed is a disaster, so I need to up my game!

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Lavinia Ross says:

    Have you had any luck rooting lilac cuttings?

    Liked by 2 people

    • Funny you should ask that. When I took these cuttings about three weeks ago, I checked the lilacs, and I couldn’t find a good branch to cut off. The webinar I watched suggested taking one branch and cutting into about 6″ pieces. In order to keep them straight when you started cutting, the suggestion was to cut the bottom at an angle and the top straight across. The very thin top of a branch does not seem to be viable. I had no idea if it would work, but I have purple and white lilacs and I’m definitely interested in trying it.

      Liked by 1 person

  9. I hope the tomato seeds do better this time around. I love fresh off the vine, homegrown tomatoes but it’s been eons since I’ve grown any myself.
    Remember those big pots I purchased for the back patio? I never did a thing with them but, put old wood pots in them to hold them down from the Zephyr Winds. This year I am going to find some real plants to put in them! Let’s see if I follow through this year. ๐Ÿคฃ

    Liked by 2 people

  10. tonytomeo says:

    I actually took a vacation at this busy time. I really needed to do so because the lack of vacation was getting to be unhealthy, and because I had delayed it for several years. However, now that I am here in Washington, I am pruning apple trees! (Oh my! This is an awesome vacation!) The timing was off for that also, but it was better than neglecting them any longer. I must make a point of returning to do them properly later.

    Liked by 2 people

    • You’ve gone north on vacation and your gardening – now, that’s my kind of vacation. Hope the apple trees have a good harvest once they’re all pruned up.

      Liked by 1 person

      • tonytomeo says:

        Well, I am not exactly gardening. I am just pruning apple trees. They need to be restructured. The procedure will not improve the quantity of apples. Actually, the trees will be much less productive for this next season. However, the fewer apples will be of superior quality, and much easier to collect. The trees had been abandoned for many years.

        Liked by 1 person

  11. bikerchick57 says:

    I am not a seed planter, Judy, but that is due to living in an apartment and not having the space. This spring, my only goal is to get to the greenhouses a little earlier than last year so I can buy exactly what I want for the patio. Good luck with your seeds and I hope by some time in May, you can put your babies in the ground.

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I do enjoy your double entendres, though I’ll move away from that since someone else already commented in a more polite manner than I probably can. ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m really impressed more than anything by how ORGANIZED you have to be with indoor seed planting. Obviously you have to be outside too, but this seems more like a doctor’s surgery. ๐Ÿ™‚ I look forward to reading about how it all works out! – Marty

    Liked by 2 people

    • You do kind of have to be organized when you do it indoors, and it is messy. I buy a roll of that plastic cover contractors use when they paint and put it on my floor. It’s kind of like putting a gigantic roll of tape on the carpet, but when I’m done I pull it up and pitch it. The walls also have to be protected because when you spray water the soil flies around. I hope I have good results to talk about.

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  13. Judy, I know nothing about any of this, so I find it very entertaining. My brother is the gardener in our family and I didn’t get that gene. What happens next to the potatoes?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Each potato plant needs an eye to grow, so I will cut them up into pieces so each has at least one eye. When I do that, they sit for a couple of days so they can kind of dry out a little. Then I will plant them and hopefully each eye will produce a plant with potatoes. They’re fun to grow, and they taste pretty good fresh too.

      Liked by 1 person

  14. I love your “production facility.” We were lucky to get four volunteer tomato plants in our raised garden this year. Since we planted a few varieties last spring, I have no idea what they will turn out to be. So far, we’ve had three lovely fruits off the largest plant – amazing to have fresh tomatoes in March! There is nothing like a home grown tomato!

    Liked by 2 people

  15. Joyce says:

    So nice to see green buds and things sprouting after a seemingly endless winter!
    We started pumpkin seeds inside one year with the grand kids and transferred them to an outside greenhouse type frame. It was so much fun to see them come to life and get a head start on growing outside once it got warm.
    Youโ€™ve got a nicely organized system there!

    Liked by 2 people

    • I bet the grandkids had fun with those pumpkins. I hope your girls and their families are all well. I can only imagine how grown up all the grands are getting. Easter will be here soon, and I bet you have some special activities all planned out. I hope they all have a great visit from the Easter bunny even the older ones. Chocolate never goes out of style or so I hear.

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  16. germac4 says:

    You have been busy with all your seed starting. Do you always pot your dahlias and then plant them in the garden? Paul plants our straight into a garden bed. I love gardening and I couldnโ€™t imagine not having a garden, but this year we have had so much rain the garden is like a tropical forest, and weโ€™ve had to buy more equipment, and hire someone to trim trees โ€ฆ still worth it all..๐Ÿ˜๐Ÿ‘ Happy gardening ๐ŸŒž

    Liked by 2 people

    • I can’t imagine not gardening, but ‘our’ changing climate has sure stirred things up and caused us to adapt. We have a very short growing season with the last frost the end of May and the first frost the end of September. Also, a good portion of my garden is not in full sun so if I can give them any kind of a jump start I get to enjoy their flowers for a longer period of time. The first year, I planted directly in the ground, and I barely saw any flowers until it was time to cut them back and dig them up. I’d take three trees down in particular, but they’re my neighbors. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  17. Always good to see a post from you, Judy, although they often fill me with envy because of your artistic and gardening talents. ๐Ÿ™‚ But it’s good envy, if there is such a thing, and I just enjoy reading about and seeing all you’re doing.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Nancy says:

    This is all fabulous! The propagating peeked my curiosityโ€ฆ how interesting and how I love seeing the leaves. I have taken cuttings from a forsythia and planted them in the LakeHouse yard. My Mom would take a long stem from a forsythia and put the middle of the stem under ground. It would start a new plant. She did that with Rhododendrons as well.
    Love seeing all your gardening starting! Fun! Fun!

    Liked by 2 people

  19. Good luck with it all. Here we usually just put the seeds in where we want the plants to grow. I did that with my sugar babies, but had no success. We’re well into autumn now but I have two lovely cherry tomato plants, self sown, which are thriving. They’re in a protected area facing north, so they will get lovely winter sun and hopefully will fruit right through winter. I’ll enjoy seeing the rewards for all your hard work in a few months time.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Wow, cherry tomatoes that will fruit through the winter. Now, there’s a ‘winter’ I could enjoy. ๐Ÿ™‚ I put beans, peas, carrots, lettuce, etc. seeds directly in the soil, but with a short summer of around 16 weeks, if I can give these plants a boost I’ll get to enjoy them and their flowers longer.

      Liked by 1 person

      • In comparison to yours, our winters are very mild, with maximum temps around 18C and minimums around 10C. Where the tomatoes are growing, they’re sheltered by the overhang of the veranda and north facing so they get all the winter sun.

        Liked by 1 person

  20. Tina Schell says:

    Well Judy, as you know I am not a gardener but I do enjoy reading about your exploits and look forward to seeing your results! I was sad to see your southern stay was cut short and hope things are ok with you and yours. BTW I loved your post with the many images of your time down here. Beautifully done!

    Liked by 2 people

  21. You’ve been busy, Judy. It all looks grand! It is not time to plant outside here either. You sure have the jump on me! Happy Spring. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  22. pbmgarden says:

    Do you buy special seed potatoes or use some from the grocery store? I remember my family growing them when I was little and the new potatoes were the biggest treat. We always had to scrape the skins off, couldn’t peel them.

    Liked by 2 people

  23. Karen says:

    This post brought back so many memories of planting seeds for tomatoes. I kept them covered with plastic wrap and stored in a warm cabinet where our cable TV box was hidden. Once they sprouted, they lived on boards on top of my claw foot bathtub in my sunny bathroom until they were big enough to go into my heated potting shed. What we won’t do to eat a great tasting tomato. ๐Ÿ˜

    Liked by 2 people

    • Thank you for the smile. Yes, it is kind of funny what we do for a good tasting tomato. Right now I’m looking at my table with the pvc pipe setup holding my lights, covered with those silver emergency blankets to keep the light and heat in, and plastic on the carpet and wall so I don’t spread the soil around when watering. ๐Ÿ™‚

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