Thursday, March 4, 2010
Seed Starting Started
The seed-growing season is officially underway! With this very humble set-up, I have planted seeds of native forbs that I have been stratifying (and in some cases scarifying) for much of the winter: Canadian columbine (Aquilegia canadensis), blue columbine (A. caerulea), yellow coneflower (Ratbida pinnata), and nodding wild onion (Allium cernuum). Today I noticed the very first tiny shoots of Allium seedlings! That's germination is less than a week!
These pictures were taken a few days ago, and I'm happy to report that much of snow in the background has melted now that we've had a few sunny, relatively warm days. The light is not an actual grow light by any stretch of the imagination. In fact, it's a regular desk lamp with a 15-watt fluorescent bulb, and I really can't say if it's providing a helpful amount of light. But it was cheap and it can't hurt, right?
I don't have a heat mat, which is bothering me but not to the point where I've felt I should make the effort to get one. That could change with Round 2 of seed starting in a couple weeks.
Speaking of Round 2, that will be the big one. I'll be starting rudbeckia, agastache, cosmos, alchemilla, phlox, two kinds of basil, and some other random blue columbine seeds that didn't get planted in the current batch. Aside from the basil, I'm going to start all my vegetable seeds outdoors. We'll see if that turns out to be a wise choice. I'm also going to have to get creative about marking which seedlings are in which containers. I have my nice little popsicle-stick tags, but they're too tall for the tray and when they're standing up I can't close the lid. Whoops. Maybe I'll break them to be shorter?
I haven't seen any sign of flowers in the garden yet, but it's starting to feel like spring!