hardland
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Location: Sth Florida

A question about seed starting mix?

I'm looking for a new mix in which to start my Tomato seeds. I've been using Fafard 3b, which is quite thick and I believe may be a bit bulky for seed starting. I've had some success, but lately not so well. The seed mix iv'e seen has a tiny amount of fertilizer in it, I'm not sure why, I didn't think seeds needed anything but moisture and warmth to sprout? The fertilizer in this mix is the chemical kind, from urea? Is it still considered organic if I use such a mix?
Hey there Mister,
Can you tell me what happened to the seeds iv'e sown,
can you give me a reason sir, as to why they've never grown,

CharlieBear
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If you have a Lowe's near you see if they still have in stock Nursery Mix. That is what I use if I don't have what I need on hand to mix my own. No fertilizer in it and you are right seedlings don't need fertilizer to sprout and generally it is better if they don't get any until they have at least 2-4 true leaves.
Urea is another name for the equivalent of processed urine which is the acid form or urea. Since urine is produced naturally in nature, then I gues technically it is organic.

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rainbowgardener
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I start tons of seed every year, just in regular miracle gro potting soil. The seeds do not need the fertilizer, but that I can tell it doesn't seem to harm them. I do this because I buy it in huge bags and I don't want to buy two different kinds. If you start them in seed starting mix, then very soon after germination you have to move them in to something else.

With Miracle-Gro in it, it is definitely not considered organic. That's to me less than ideal, but I live with it, because it is so much easier and cheaper. Once they are out in the garden, everything else I do is organic.

My newest resolution (out of the discussion on conservation in a different thread) is that in 2012 winter, I will not use the peat moss/miracle grow stuff any more. Peat moss is mined and is not renewable in the short term and miracle grow is a petroleum product. So I am already looking in to how to buy coconut coir (renewable substitute for peat) and perlite. I am planning to mix the coconut coir, perlite, and some of my own compost to make homemade potting soil. Have not done it with coconut coir, years ago, I used to make my own with peat moss.
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lakngulf
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X2 on the Miracle Gro. It has served me well, although sometimes seems a little coarse. I have also mixed it with some topsoil about 50/50 and that has worked also.
Nutin as good as a kitchen sink mater sammich

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gixxerific
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Rainbow Check out Lowes they have I belive it is Sta-Green which is OMRI listed and does great for me.

Toough to the OP I prefer Dr. Earth though it more expensive, but I like the Sta-Green as well.

I always mix in compost, composted manure, mushroom compost, perlite, vermiculite. Whatever I feel like at the time to add bulk. Just has to be organic for me. I start lots of seeds so cheap and organinc is good. But my prefered base is again Dr. Earth.

my 2 cents

Dono

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rainbowgardener
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I looked up the Sta Green. They have various formulations including seed starter mix, regular potting soil, "moisture max" etc. I didn't see on the website any OMRI listed and they all had "fertilizer" in them (even the seed starter mix, it just has less -- shown as feeds for three months vs. the potting soil says feeds for nine months). I couldn't find anywhere where it says what the ingredients are, but I'm pretty sure it is basically the same as the Miracle-Gro stuff, including peat moss and synthetic fertilizer.

That works fine for starting seeds and I have done it for years. For environmental/ ecological reasons, I want to quit doing that this time and switch to renewables like coconut coir.
Twitter account I manage for local Sierra Club: https://twitter.com/CherokeeGroupSC Facebook page I manage for them: https://www.facebook.com/groups/65310596576/ Come and find me and lots of great information, inspiration

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gixxerific
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Sorry you are right RBG. I said the wrong name Sta Green in certified by the "Soil and Mulch Council" which is basically a joke ceritifcation. I can't think of the name of the stuff I use it comes in a small gold bag. And is only like $4. Sorry for the screwup my memory is fading. :lol: :?

jtdickson
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Location: Washington DC area

how to buy coconut coir (renewable substitute for peat)

I've been very happy with "Natural Beginnings" and "Perfect Start" from [url]https://gardensalive.com[/url]. Both are quality products based on coir instead of peat.
If you love to cook, try looking at gardening as "early cooking".



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