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.

Monday, March 27, 2017

crazy pepper seedlings

pepper seedlings IMG_6773

Two days ago, I decided my peppers seeds weren't sprouting because the temperature was too low. It had been ten days with no sign of seedlings. So I rushed out right to buy a heat mat. So - only two days later - guess what's in the tray. Lot's of pepper sprouts!! I can't believe it. I wonder if they would have come up without the mat or if the mat was a miracle worker?

In addition to getting the new heat mat,  also replanted by adding an extra seed to each planting cell. I thought the original seeds had probably rotted. I bet I'll get two peppers in every pot now.

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Blogger Walt said...

My peppers took about two weeks to emerge and I had a heat map under them on an 18 hour timer -- the tomatoes planted in the same tray were 4" tall!

March 27, 2017 11:59 AM

Blogger Dana K said...

I bought a heat mat a couple of years ago and it made a big difference for me. Glad to hear you're finally getting pepper seedlings!

March 27, 2017 4:26 PM

Blogger Muttsandaklutz said...

Well, if it was the heat mat, that sure is impressive! Look at them, all happy to see the light of day. My celery has come up, but the peppers haven't yet (day 10 today).

March 27, 2017 10:20 PM

Anonymous Phuong said...

Hot peppers take forever to germinate for me, usually 2-3 weeks. By the third week I get pretty antsy and start reseeding.

March 27, 2017 10:26 PM

Blogger kathy said...

I'm glad to hear I'm not the only one antsy and reseeding after 2-3 weeks. Peppers are SO slow! But cute. No, I don't think it was the heat mat. I think I just got impatient and spent $24 unecessarily, though it was a good sale. I'm learning. Gradually.

March 28, 2017 3:11 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am having trouble getting the lettuce "little gem" to germinate... all the other lettuces are up ...any one else having trouble with this variety??

March 28, 2017 9:42 AM

Blogger kathy said...

I haven't grown Little Gem but it sounds like a great lettuce. Baker Creek describes it as a very small, green, romaine-type. One of the very best-tasting lettuces. A superb heat-tolerant variety. Burpee says Little Gem is one of the most trouble-free lettuces you can grow.

Are the seeds really small? Sometimes very small varieties take longer to germinate. Maybe you planted a bit too deep and they will just take longer to sprout.

Also, lettuce germinates best at 60-65 F. At high temperatures (I don't know how high), Johnny's Seeds says it will go dormant. But this applies to all lettuce, so I don't know why you have a problem with only Little Gem.

Good luck. Maybe someone else has an idea.

March 28, 2017 4:22 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

lettuce needs light to I just put the seeds on the top of the ground then water from the bottom to settle them in.... good point...little gem might be a little more sensitive to heat...I keep my matt at 70 ...might try reseeding and leaving off the matt... tho all my other lettuces germinate in about 2-3 should try little is one of my favorites and I grow it every year..that is why I was surprised when it didn't come up this year..btw have your tried the paper towel method for starting your sweet peas (flowers)???

March 28, 2017 5:03 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I had a nice surprise when I checked my heat matt this morning... the little gem lettuce seeds are up...they took 5 days were the other lettuces were up in 2...go figure...I don't remember them being slower... but senior moments are often any more :)....

March 29, 2017 1:48 PM

Blogger Greg said...

I've noticed that peppers always seem slower to germinate. I reseeded mine a few years ago. You're not the only impatient one. :)

March 29, 2017 2:38 PM

Anonymous Mrdirtfarmer said...

A little heat goes a long way. Great idea!

March 30, 2017 10:28 AM

Blogger Jim Lemire said...

I started peppers on March 26th and had sprouting yesterday (April 2) only 1 week to sprout! I did not use a heat mat. They were under a plastic dome/lid under fluorescent lights in a room I keep at 68 degrees. This is my first year starting peppers so perhaps this was just beginners luck! My seeds were from High Mowing, which is in Vermont, so perhaps their varieties can deal ok with cooler temps.

April 03, 2017 11:39 PM

Blogger kathy said...

Wow. ! week is pretty fast for peppers. I guess the dome lid and lights warmed them up just fine.

Many of my varieties are from Johnny's (ME) and other northern companies.

For me, dome lids increase fungus so I don't use them. I keep the soil open and a fan going and I water often.

I'm really impressed you got yours to sprout so fast! Go peppers!

April 03, 2017 11:53 PM


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