This is a journal of my vegetable gardens. Skippy was my first dog and he thought the garden was his, even though I did all the work. Now Suzie and Charley follow in his footsteps. We're located near Boston (USDA zone 6A). I have a community plot, a backyard vegetable garden, fruit trees, berry bushes, chickens, and bees. I use sustainable organic methods and do my best to grow all of my family's vegetables myself.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

more seeds

Seeds are on display in stores now and its hard to resist buying a few extra packets. I picked up some arugla and a hot pepper mix. I'll have to start the peppers indoors soon. I haven't done this in years because its alot of work, but I thought I'd start just one type of seed this year - around March 15 for peppers in our area.



Blogger Ottawa Gardener said...

Oh the temptation... do you look online too... I am sending away for some chufa seeds (love horchata de chufas) but I feel bad, bad. Thankfully, I am also doing seed exchanges to satisfy my temptation to grow a little bit of too much.

February 13, 2007 10:35 PM

Anonymous Patrick said...

Maybe you already know this, but the trick with starting peppers indoors is the soil temperature.

The soil needs to to stay above at least 70F, 24 hours a day, and 75F is better. At garden centers you can buy a variety of gadgets to heat the soil if your house is colder than this.

You also have to make sure the soil doesn't dry out because it's so warm, and your house is probably dry during the winter anyway.

Once the seeds germinate temperature isn't important anymore.

February 14, 2007 6:39 PM

Blogger carletongardener said...

I didn't know that. Its helpful to know as my house gets cold at night (65F, 18C). I saw some little heat mats that I'll look at. I really appreciate the advice! I've never started peppers from seed before.

February 15, 2007 9:53 PM

Anonymous Patrick said...

I use a heated propagator, with a plastic lid, because it can help keep it moist. If you just use a heated mat, you may want to cover your seeds with some plastic wrap with a few air holes poked in it.

If you want a quick solution, you could also put a small lamp in a box, just be sure you don't risk starting a fire. The heat of the light bulb in the enclosed space will probably keep it warm enough. This is what I did before I used a propagator. After the seeds germinate you should take them out of the box, because it's not good for them to get light 24 hours a day.

Peppers are the only vegetable plant I know of that need so much heat to germinate...

February 17, 2007 6:07 AM

Blogger carletongardener said...

I wish I hadn't picked such a difficult seed to start early...

I like the light idea. I have an 80F fish tank with a small (warm) light that runs at night. I have an idea how to position a couple of small seed trays and a plastic box (safely). They will stay warm and humid. I'll post photo next month when I start the seeds so I can get advice.

February 17, 2007 8:10 AM

Anonymous Patrick said...

That sounds like a great idea!

February 18, 2007 8:08 AM


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