Friday, February 12, 2010

Planning for Indoor Seed-Starting

I'm late! I'm late! The spring season has been ticking closer and the sudden toe-tapping feeling has come over me. Oncoming spring always makes me feel late. I walked into my landlord's house to chat about laundry and thank him for keeping my fire going when I had an unexpectedly long stint away from home last weekend, and saw a fully rigged set up of shelves with florescent lighting to start the lettuces and tomatoes. I haven't even cleared enough space in my living room to start seeds yet! I haven't even ordered my onion sets yet! or discussed my garden plans with my landlord!

But really, it's okay. My farming friends are only starting their onion seeds now (they grow from seeds, not sets - sets are tiny second-year onions started the previous autumn and then over-wintered. They grow faster to ensure nice, fat bulbs, and are easier to maintain for those of us who don't have the faith in our gardening skills to grow onions from seed). They will start tomatoes in March. I will follow their example and chill out. I've already numbered all my weeks in my planner backwards from the last frost for the region (May 20th), so i always know what week it is (The week starting Monday, February 15th is 13 weeks from the last frost). In the mean time, there's a lot to think about.

Here's my plan:

This week I will:
- Design my indoor seed-starting set-up
This includes:
- Figure out how many seeds I will be started and what the system will look like
- Figure out if I need to heat the system (I hope not)
- Figure out how to keep the cat out of the seedlings
- Make a full shopping list for what I need

Also this week I will:
- Actually talk to my landlord about my garden plans and the where and when of it
- Buy onion sets, herb seeds, and other things i don't have! I will buy my next round of seeds from Fedco, which is the cheapest and most responsible northeast seed company with a comprehensive variety of seeds)

next week I will (12 weeks before the last frost):
- Buy the necessary equipment

The following week I will (11 weeks before the last frost)
- rig up the seed-starting system
- run a test-start with lettuces, and possibly okra (i need to do some more research on this Southern, heat-loving plant which grows so anemically here in the Northeast)

9 weeks before the last frost (the third week in March):
I will start my earliest seedlings (tomatoes, peppers, okra, and I'll probably start my herbs and flowers as well)

1 comment:

  1. I've got indoor seed starting on my mind this weekend too. Got to make room first!