Vegetable Garden Basics: Seed Starting Mixes

When the time comes to start seeds indoors for your vegetable garden, you’ll need a light system, trays or pots and a seed starting medium. Indoor seed starting is never done in garden soil, which is too heavy for seed starting and might carry diseases. Instead, gardeners usually choose some kind of seed starting mix.…

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Vegetable Garden Basics: When to Start Seed Indoors

As days get longer, it’s natural for gardeners to start thinking about seeds and possibly starting seeds indoors. In Minnesota, many warm-season vegetables need to be started indoors and planted in the garden as transplants in order to flower and fruit in our relatively short growing season. But when is a good time to start…

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Learn Tips for Successful Seed Starting at MSHS

Have you ever wanted to try starting herbs, vegetables or annual flowers from seed but not been sure where to start? Or maybe you tried indoor seed starting but were disappointed with the results. MSHS is offering a class geared for anyone who wants to learn how to start seeds successfully indoors. To be held…

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What Are True Leaves?

If you start seeds indoors, you’ve probably read the phrase, “when the seedling has a set of true leaves….” or something to that effect. What are true leaves? When a seed germinates, it bursts out of its seed coat and sends up a stem. Some of these stems have one leaf (called a monocot) others…

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Starting Annuals from Seed

While many gardeners enjoy starting vegetables from seed, starting annuals from seed is fun and easy, too. Some tender annuals — zinnias, marigolds, calendulas, salvias, cosmos, morning glories, nasturtiums, sweet alyssum and sunflowers, for example — are quick to germinate and grow, whether in the garden or indoors. Some of them also lend themselves to…

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Will You Delay Seed Starting This Year?

A blog reader recently asked if seed starters should delay their seed starting this year because of the long, cold winter. In Minnesota, we’ve had the worst winter in terms of the “misery index” since 1978-79, and I know many parts of the East Coast and northern tier states have suffered just as much. Does…

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How to Make Seed Starting Mix

It’s still too early to start seeds indoors in Minnesota, with the exception of onions, but many gardeners are thinking about their seed-starting set up. While many excellent commercial varieties of seed-starting mix are available in garden centers, gardeners who start a lot of plants from seed or want to control all the elements of…

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Plant Onion Seeds Now

With the winds whipping and a high forecast in the below zeroes again, it may seem like spring and your vegetable garden are far, far away. But actually, late January and early February are a great time to start seeds indoors – onion seeds. Onions require a long growing season, especially those that form big…

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Learn How to Start Vegetables with Winter Sowing

  Winter sowing of seeds is one of the top three topics that bring folks to this blog. (The other top two are northern gardening — no surprise — and growing tomatoes.) Many Minnesota gardeners use the winter sowing method to start perennials from seed, but more and more are using a style of winter…

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The Seed Catalogs Have Arrived!

On a day when the high temperatures here in Minnesota will likely not get about minus-15 and the wind is making the garden look like an Arctic landscape, seed catalogs are like a cup of hot chocolate or a warm fire — comforting, reliable and cheering. The seed catalogs have been arriving since just after…

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