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How to Germinate Seeds Quickly

How to Germinate Seeds Quickly

How to Germinate Seeds Quickly

The next trick to germinate seeds quickly is to use stratification, which is when you expose seeds to a period of moist cold. It makes the seeds think they’re going through a period of winter. Stratification mimics nature; birds drop seeds that go through a cold period throughout winter and sprout in the spring.Most seeds, including your average vegetable and herb seeds, germinate best in dark conditions. It’s an easy mistake to miss because seedlings NEED light to grow, but seeds germinate best in light. As soon as the seeds sprout and a seedling appears, place it under a grow light.If you want to grow a garden, it's important that you give your seeds the best chance of achieving the type of growth they are capable of. But germinating seeds can be hard work. Here's how to do it quickly and easily, so you can have a fresh, garden-ready row of flowers in no time.

Seed

Test old or new seeds: If you have seeds that are a few years old, germinating seeds on paper towel is a great way to quickly test if they are still alive. We have been able to grow healthy plants from cabbage or tomato seeds that are over 5 years old! If you store seeds in a cool and dry place, some can have quite a long life. We also use this technique to find out if the new seeds we got are good quality.Some types of vegetables, such as beans and squash, are best started outdoors. There is little benefit to growing them indoors because they germinate and grow quickly. Some flowers, such as poppies, are best planted outdoors, too. These seeds are usually marked "direct sow". Check the seed packet to see how deep you should plant your seeds. Some of the small ones can be sprinkled right on the soil surface. Larger seeds will need to be buried. For insurance, I plant two seeds per cell (or pot). If both seeds germinate, I snip one and let the other grow. It's helpful to make a couple divots in each pot to accommodate the seeds. After you've dropped a seed in each divot, you can go back and cover the seeds.

There are a number of factors that affect seed germination. Check the seed packet to determine if all the requirements for temperature and light were met. If the soil was cold and excessively wet, the seeds may have rotted. Dig up one of the seeds and examine it. If it is swollen and soft, the seed has rotted and you will need to start over. If the soil was too dry, the seeds may not have germinated or may have dried up before their roots could take hold. If the seeds were old, they may no longer be viable. Try again and be sure to provide consistent moisture.Keep in mind, your last average frost date is a guideline and it can change from year to year. That's why it’s an “average” date right? It's a good idea though, for you to kind of keep your own record and see when that happens to fall for you. You can also speak to someone at your local garden supply store or check the online Farmer’s Almanac for your area to find your first and last average frost dates if you're unsure. Once you know your last frost date, you can plan your seed starting around that. (Source: melissaknorris.com)

 

 

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