Thursday, March 28, 2013

Get a jumpstart on your garden

Even if it's still snowy where you live, plant an indoor window box right now. Now is the time to start so your plants are ready in time!

Start some seedlings
Indoor window box
Get a head start on your outdoor planting by starting vegetable and flower seedlings in a bright windowsill. Broccoli, cabbage, Brussels sprouts and collards all grow quickly and easily. Onions and leeks also enjoy a jump start before heading outdoors.
For seedlings destined for the outdoors, use "plug trays," which have 50-100 small cells designed to make transplanting easy. Place 1-3 seeds in each "plug" at a depth equal to 3 times the diameter of the seed. Cover with a light layer of soil mix or use vermiculite (a mineral that helps soil conserve moisture).

Once seedlings have 6-8 leaves (which takes about 6-8 weeks), they're ready for planting outdoors. But wait to transplant seedlings until nighttime temperatures are consistently above 50 degrees. Your local nursery can help you figure out when that'll be for your area, then work backward to decide when to start growing seedlings.

Information in this post taken from Jackman, Lilian. "FILL YOUR WINDOWS WITH Spring." Vegetarian Times 329 (2005): 56-60. Academic Search Complete. Web. 4 Apr. 2013.