I thot sum1 would mention my problem - getting good germination and actually having some carrot seedlings to thin . .
My garden soil drains very, very fast. Once the interminable spring rains stop and we get to sunshine - the dampness disappears out of the top inch of soil in about 30 minutes . . . Since carrot seed resides in the top 1/4" of soil, I'm sure I've killed thousands of tiny carrot seedlings by not maintaining good soil moisture levels.
I could cover the soil surface and the underlying carrot seed with a board or burlap. But, that would mean that I'd need to look under
the covering on a regular basis - over what seems like a carrot seed's required 3-week germination schedule . . . see above regarding seedling murder
There were a couple of solutions:
One that gets you to "Applestar's seed balls" quickly is just to order pelletted seed. I've ordered pelletted carrot seed from both Johnny's and Harris in years past. They don't always have the varieties that I am interested in trying but - those clay pellets go a long way to holding needed moisture against the seed.
Nes mentioned the "the wallpaper paste method." I'm not sure what Vanessa is referring to - probably the gluing of the seed to paper. I've done that using one tablespoon of cornstarch to one cup of water and bringing that to a boil. Cooled this gel to room temperature before I glued seed to strips of paper towels.
. . . the paper towels were a bit tedious to try to get underground what with wind and everything. So, I just carried the cornstarch mixture out into the garden in a ziplock bag, cut the corner out of the bag and dribbled
the gel into the soil. Then, I sprinkled the carrot seed on the line of gel. It really does just a good a job of holding moisture on those seeds during the weeks
it takes for them to germinate.
Now back to seed sprinkling techniques . . .
We are each other's harvest; we are each other's business; we are each other's magnitude and bond. ~ Gwendolyn Brooks