Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Seeds and Armor

Two seed trays, three bags of seedling mix, and a bunch of seeds rubberbanded together. I guess that normal people have potting benches out back or do this in their garage. I'm not normal.

I open the seedling mix bag and discover that it's essentially peat moss with a little vermiculite mixed in. Oh well, I'll know better next year. I got myself a soup spoon for a scoop, but that's for later. First, you gotta dump as much dirt into the middle of the tray as you can and then start spreading it out toward the edges. My favorite part is when I lift the tray three times and smack it (gently!) on the dining table to 'pack' the soil down. After I fiddle around with topping off the low cells, I fill the water-catcher tray with about a half inch of lukewarm water and let the cells soak it up. Ideally the cells will be nice and moist with almost no water left in the bottom.

Ah, nice, dark earth (well, peat moss and vermiculite mix--no dirt here) ready for seeds. Some seeds go one to a cell, some of them two. With the more spendy seeds I put in just one and hope for the best. With the less expensive ones I double or sometimes triple up, with the plan of snipping off all but the nicest one in each cell.

Poor things.

And then I put on the tray's 'greenhouse' cover.

I don't like the things, actually. They promote mold, which then has to be combatted with anti-fungals. But I had this worse problem than mold last year ....

And sure enough, after a trip into town, my daughter rats him out.

"Wizard stepped on your seed trays. Sorry, I couldn't stop him."

I lift the greenhouse lid. Victory! With the soil level slightly below the tops of the trays, and the smaller cell size I selected, plus the tough plastic of the clear lid ....

No kitteh footprints here. Yay!

I felt a little bad for starting my tomato and pepper seeds so late, but you know what? It snowed all day, non-stop. I might still be late-ish, but considering the weather, hedging my bets for a later plant-out might not be such a bad thing. I just hope that my indigo rose tomatoes have enough time and heat to ripen. They look soooo kewl!

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