Starting Seeds

baby eggplant sprout
seedlings beet seedlings

12 Comments. Leave new

  • Your pictures are amazing! You have inspired me to plant today.

  • Marian(LondonUK)
    April 3, 2011 9:46 PM

    Great seed production Kathy, I envy your steadfast schedule. We returned from New York last weekend ( first visit, amazing city of contrasts and history) a couple of days so cold eeekkk. My seeds are suffering this Spring swinging from cold to silly warmth. Predicted 71 degrees this week! If I fail this year, I can enjoy your success and wisdom. Thanks!!
    Marian (London UK)

  • Great looking plants! We've just begun to put our plants outside here in CA with covers. I'm hoping they all make it.

  • Need your advice. My seedling sprouted and then they all died. I had them in the garage.

  • I just found your blog and will enjoy following your journal. I too am journaling my garden, anxiously awaiting our rain to let up. Although we are across the contry, I think it will be fun to compare notes. I'll add your blog to my list of interests. Thanks!

  • Look at those plants, they look great!

  • I was wondering how successful your Quadrato Rosso D'Asti (sweet red peppers) have been germinating. I also have these and so far my germination rates have been a little lack luster with this variety.

  • This is the best part of being a gardener. At least to me it is. When you see things growing.


  • I'm a first time gardener and I'm very excited about my latest sprouts which are beets that look like yours! If you have the time to answer a question… When I planted my beets, I planted the whole seed ball and now I have clusters of seedlings that are now a little over an inch tall. Should I snip them to only one seedling each, or should I transplant the whole cluster? Thanks!

  • Bets do fine in clumps of 3 or 4. The roots will push each other apart as they grow. If you have a clump of more than 5, I think you should thin by pulling the extras.

  • Mahes,

    If the seeds sprouted and then died, I am thinking they didn't have enough light or water. You need to have a lot of light for seedlings. A good strong bulb, preferably a florescent tube, very close to the seedlings. Water them about every other day: water thoroughly and then let the soil dry out and then water again. Keep an eye on them daily.

    Good soil and clean pots are important too. I use a sterilized soil mix (usually MiracleGro) and new or bleach-rinsed seed cells.

    The temperature is important too. Some seeds (especially poppers) need warm temperatures to germinate/sprout, but will grow in cooler temperatures. Temperatures too hot (above 90*F) could be a problem for seedlings.)

    Let me know if any of these seem like they could have been a problem. Maybe others can give advice too.

  • Dave,

    My Quadrato Rosso D'Asti did a great job of germinating this year (two year old seeds from Ohio heirloom seeds). I did notice that they were slower than other varieties. My Thai hot and cayenne sprouted first. Then Ancho/Poblanos, and then tex mex Joe Parker. Last were my Quadrato Rosso D'Asti (sweet reds) and very last – Quadrato Giallo D'Ast (sweet yellow peppers).

    Since pepper germination is temperature dependent, other growers may find even more variability. I put my peppers trays under my tropical fish tank at 78*F (toasty!) until they sprout.


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