Last week I took some time to plant seeds for spring. I used one of the new FastStart seed starting kit, compliments of Gardener’s Supply. Below are some shots of the process.
Here is the compressed block of seed starting medium I used. Coir is made from shredded coconut shells so it is an eminently renewable resource. It also is excellent when it comes to moisture retention. Once it is moistened, this brick will triple in volume.
Here are the basic parts of the FastStart seed starting kit. The bottom tray acts as a water reservoir. The black plastic grid in my right hand keeps the seed starting tray out of the water and provides a platform for the capillary mat in my right hand.
Here you can see the lower elements (reservoir, raised grid, and capillary mat) assembled with the seed tray in my right hand before it goes on top. The capillary mat is wider than the raised grid so the ends dip into the water below.
I am planting seeds received from Renee Shepherd’s Seeds. She always has a nice selection of edibles and ornamentals.
Now comes the fine detail work. I’m sowing basil seeds which are quite small. It is nearly impossible to plant just one in each square so I’m trying to spread them out a little. Once they germinate I’ll eliminate the extras, NOT by pulling them out and disturbing their neighbors, but by snipping their stems down.
The last step is to fill the reservoir with water and place the cover on top, and set it where it can get indirect light. Never place covered trays like these in direct sunlight because the air will superheat and cook the seeds.
Next Time: Seed Starting Progress Report