Trouble
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Jalapeno and Tomato Seeds - How do I Start Growing Them?

So I bought Jalapeno and Tomato seeds from Lowe's today, along with a little egg tray-ish tray that's supposed to harbor new seeds until they're transplantable.
So I'm going to do whatever I'm going to do tomorrow, because it's pretty late right now, so what should I do tomorrow to start growing the plants? Sorry if this doesn't make sense. I have 0 Experience in Gardening, so bare with me.

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rainbowgardener
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how to start

This part should be pretty obvious :) But you didn't mention soil in there. Does your "eggish" tray come with potting soil in it? Otherwise you need to get some potting soil. Put your seeds in the potting soil shallowly, just covered about to their own thickness. Keep the soil barely moist, but NOT wet. The easiest way to kill seedlings is with too much water. Be sure your tray has drainage. This time of year I'd keep it outdoors, so you don't have to worry about lights or getting the seedlings adapted to the outdoors later. Tomatoes and pepper need lots of light. But to start with while they are babies, they will need to be in a somewhat protected spot. You don't want them beaten down by rain (well you probably aren't having rain this time of year in So. Cal) or to burn up in hot sun. ...

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nes
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Your description is reminding me of the little disks you get with tree seeds (Tree Canada usually gives them out to school kids for earth day & such). I think you just soak them then let them germinate. However I`d follow RG`s advice and sink them in some potting soil.
Vanessa raising organic vegetables, livestock, wildflowers, and family in zone 5A.

a0c8c
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I'm thinking he's talking about jiffy pots. They're like egg cartons for plants the decompose when planted in the dirt with the plant. You definately need some organic potting soil though, and don't make my mistake and try and put the seedlings in the ground too quick. I was impatient and killed two flowers beds by rushing them into the heat.

Trouble
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a0c8c wrote:I'm thinking he's talking about jiffy pots. They're like egg cartons for plants the decompose when planted in the dirt with the plant. You definately need some organic potting soil though, and don't make my mistake and try and put the seedlings in the ground too quick. I was impatient and killed two flowers beds by rushing them into the heat.
That's exactly what they are. They already came with a little dry, compacted ball of soil that expands when watered. It came with a germination sheet. I just planted the seeds (Jalapeno, Hot Peppers, and Tomatos) and covered them with the germination sheet. They're in the dining room on a table that doesn't get much use. The sun doesn't hit that table, but when the first sprouts start to grow, I'll turn on the flourescent lights that are dangling over the table, which I hope should help them grow. It also came with a little bit of organic fertilizer that I'm going to spread on when the true leaves come out.

Trouble
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Also, when/how should I water them? The soil's dark and like a damp sponge almost, but what's an indicator that I should water them?

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rainbowgardener
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watering seedlings

That's the tricky part especially with Jiffy pots, which I personally hate. The trouble with the peat pots is they hold moisture in so the soil tends to stay too wet, but if the soil starts to dry out at all then they suck all the moisture out for themselves and make it too dry, but the pot is still moist and gets moldy. Oh well. What you are aiming for as I said originally is for the soil to stay a little bit moist but not wet. With my plastic pots, I set them in a tray and put a little water in the tray and let the soil suck it up. Doesn't work as well with Jiffy pots, because the pot sucks it up instead, but you could try it. Otherwise, if you are watering from the top, I would put a little bit of water in very gently until a few drops start coming out the bottom. Then leave it alone until the surface just starts to dry out (barely). That should work out to about once a day, but depends a lot on conditions.

BTW when it comes time to transplant your little plants into the ground, DO NOT plant them in the Jiffy pots; peel the pot off. Despite what they say, the pots do not break down in any reasonable time and tend to strangle the plant and continue doing the too wet or too dry routine.

Trouble
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Re: watering seedlings

rainbowgardener wrote:That's the tricky part especially with Jiffy pots, which I personally hate. The trouble with the peat pots is they hold moisture in so the soil tends to stay too wet, but if the soil starts to dry out at all then they suck all the moisture out for themselves and make it too dry, but the pot is still moist and gets moldy. Oh well. What you are aiming for as I said originally is for the soil to stay a little bit moist but not wet. With my plastic pots, I set them in a tray and put a little water in the tray and let the soil suck it up. Doesn't work as well with Jiffy pots, because the pot sucks it up instead, but you could try it. Otherwise, if you are watering from the top, I would put a little bit of water in very gently until a few drops start coming out the bottom. Then leave it alone until the surface just starts to dry out (barely). That should work out to about once a day, but depends a lot on conditions.

BTW when it comes time to transplant your little plants into the ground, DO NOT plant them in the Jiffy pots; peel the pot off. Despite what they say, the pots do not break down in any reasonable time and tend to strangle the plant and continue doing the too wet or too dry routine.
So I should be watering the seeds about once a day? There are 25 little cells and I took about 3/4 of a cup of warm water and poured it on all of them. When I poured the water on, it went straight down. I don't know if this is bad or not because I don't think the little cells have holes to breathe. Also, I think I might've disturbed some of the seeds. Is this going to affect wether or not they sprout?

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SP8
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Re: watering seedlings

Trouble wrote: So I should be watering the seeds about once a day? There are 25 little cells and I took about 3/4 of a cup of warm water and poured it on all of them. When I poured the water on, it went straight down. I don't know if this is bad or not because I don't think the little cells have holes to breathe. Also, I think I might've disturbed some of the seeds. Is this going to affect wether or not they sprout?
It depends entirely on how much you actually disturbed them…

Many seeds are buoyant and dumping too much water on them in the early stages will just see them float to the surface.

Try giving them a good soaking with a spray bottle instead.

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gixxerific
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Here is my setup.

[img]https://i272.photobucket.com/albums/jj185/gixxerific/DSC02687.jpg[/img]

[img]https://i272.photobucket.com/albums/jj185/gixxerific/DSC02689.jpg[/img]

I have the peat pots and they will suck out the moisture as well as hold it like rainbowgardener said, so they take a little getting used to, if you are not. Basically if it feels or looks dry water it lightly till moist (notice the water bottle). To point out again, don't over water. On the reverse side if it looks or feel moist leave it alone for a bit.

Another reiteration is DO NOT plant them in the pots, same goes for something you would buy at Lowe's or Home Depot. Remove the pots before planting. You can rip them up and use them for mulch in the planting, but tear them off to free the roots. Use good soil as well I used a my mix and they are doing great. I planted these 5 days ago.

One more thing you can see they are bending west, I believe in turning them to strengthen them (making them bend the other way). You could also use a fan to simulate wind before actually hardening them off outdoors.

Good luck keep us posted, Dono

Trouble
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I see my first sprouts! Lovely little things, they are. I'm going to move them under lights today to see if I could coax them to grow a little more. Only a little bit of them actually sprouted, though. It's only been a few days, so I shouldn't be impatient.

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gixxerific
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Trouble wrote:I see my first sprouts! Lovely little things, they are. I'm going to move them under lights today to see if I could coax them to grow a little more. Only a little bit of them actually sprouted, though. It's only been a few days, so I shouldn't be impatient.
I just love growing things, I can feel your excitement.

Also, I'm one of the most impatient people you will ever meet. I hate to wait. thinking that today (& many other day's) I wish there was a magical ingredient I could add and the next day have a bumper crop but it doesn't work that way. :x

Dono

Trouble
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I understand :)
Anyway, the sprouts got bigger today, but I'm kinda worried. I think the germination sheet is retarding their growth. The big plants are getting folded because of the sheet but I don't want to take it off because I see some little flies land on them and it kinda worries me. I only have 5/25 starters that actually started, so what should I do?

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rainbowgardener
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growing sprouted seedlings

I'm not sure what a germination sheet is, but I'm picturing some kind of Saran wrappy thing over them to hold moisture in.

Once your seeds have sprouted, get rid of it. What the baby seedlings need is LOTS of light and air. The roots need to stay dampish but not wet.

More seeds may yet sprout, but they don't need to have the saran wrap for that.

You need to provide lighting either by having them out doors or having bright artificial light close to them that's turned on 16 hrs a day.

Trouble
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YES! They've all sprouted and look great. I've been leaving them out in the sun during the day and indoors with the lights at night. They still only have seed leaves, but it's exciting :D

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rainbowgardener
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YAY!!!! It's amazing how exciting this stuff is. You can stick a seed in and then in a few days up pops this beautiful little sprout. The lettuce and spinach seeds I planted outside last weekend for fall "crop" (one raised bed I'm talking about here) have all sprouted. I'm excited too even after years of doing this.

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I'm a little worried. I left my plants in the shade for an entire day and when I went to place them back where they should be, they had a little white fuzz on the soil. Is this bad?

Trouble
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One of my tomato seedlings died :? The leaves turned brown/olive colored and then shriveled up and died. Is this disease?



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