eminent
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Starting off on the right foot with germinating

Hey everyone. I have now got my actual gardening beds figure out and they will be in the process of being built over the next week so they are ready for this year. With that being out of the way it is time to jump in on getting some plants started.

I came across a site that basically tells me a good idea of when I should be starting seeds and planting plants into my garden in my area. This link is below.

https://www.gardenate.com/

Basically what I wanted to check with all of you guys is if this is a good guide to go by?

Before I move on with my other questions I would like to post a list of seeds which I currently have gotten my hands on. Note that just because I have all these seeds doesnt mean I plan to use every once as It depends what I can fit and what works well together. Also this is just as of now I may find something that I feel I would like to grow that I didn't get ahold of yet. First time grow who knows what to expect :)

List: Cucumbers, habanero peppers, turnips, carrots, radish, pumpkin, watermelon, bell peppers, jalapeno peppers, cayenne peppers, celery, purple tomatillo, cabbage, big bunch onions, sweet corn, summer squash, spinach, snow peas, sugar snap peas, iceberg lettuce, lollo rossa lettuce, cauliflower, broccoli, cherry tomatos, slicer tomatos, pole snap garden beans, cocktail type tomato, beefsteak tomato, white light onions, and eggplant.

So there you have it. Quite the list. At least for me.

So now for my other questions.

The first question I do have is will any of these guys fight with each other? I do know that plants fight for space and light but besides that will one of these guys not grow and produce well next to another?

My second question is how exactly do you know when its time to have all of these started when going from seeds? I do know that I can read the back of the packet which for basically every one of these it says on the packet start 4-6 weeks indoors before last frost but being a first time gardener I sadly have to say I don't know when that usually is in my area. Also that site I linked to doesnt cover everything in my list that I could see unless I over looked some stuff which then makes me wonde if they should be started at a different time. So if anyone had some help in that aea that would be great!

And my final question for now is about onions. When you do plant your early onions is it actually possible to start them indoor in fiber pots? Reason im asking is I don't know how long the fiber pots take to break down so I didn't know if doing that would hurt their growth when finally put outside.

Thanks to all that help. I wrote this pretty quickly as I am excited to get startedso sorry if some things don't make sense :) If you have any questions about what I am asking jsut ask and I will let you know.

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alaskagold
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Companion plants:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_companion_plants

This isn't the best list, but it gives you an idea of what to plant next to each other, and what not.

eminent
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great thanks ill take a look at that now.

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rainbowgardener
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That's a very diverse list of plants.

To start with you need to sort them out into cool season plants and warm season plants.

Cool season: turnips, carrots, radish, celery, cabbage, spinach, peas, lettuce, cauliflower, broccoli.

Warm season: cucumbers, peppers, pumpkin, watermelon, tomatillo, corn squash, tomatoes, beans, eggplants (I'll talk about onions later)

The cool season plants get planted early, can tolerate even some frost, but don't like the hot weather. I start cauliflower and broccoli indoors. I have 6-8" tall broccoli plants already that I am hardening off (starting getting them used to outdoors), so they can get planted soon. The rest I direct seed in the ground (it helps to soak your pea seeds over night and then plant them). The seed packets on those usually say "plant as soon as the ground can be worked" meaning it is unfrozen and dried out enough to be crumbly not clumpy. For me that is about now. I was actually thinking about planting last weekend, but then I was out of town part of the time and the time I could have done it, it rained all day. But as soon as I get the chance.

Warm season plants can't be planted out until all danger of frost is past. And the cucurbits, melons, squashes, cucumbers, can't get planted until all danger of frost is past AND the soil is warmed up some. Probably well into May or even early June. I start squash type plants indoors about the time of my average last frost date for planting out a month or so later. But they are fast growers. A lot of people just plant them directly in the ground when the soil is warm. Corn and beans are usually just planted directly in the ground after last frost date.

The tomatoes and peppers can't tolerate any frost, but are slow growers. Most people start them indoors and them move them out once it is warm enough. I started my pepper seeds in late January and my tomato seeds mid-February. If you can't do that, you might be better off just buying nursery started plants, especially if this is your first year gardening and you are still getting your beds together.

It's almost spring! This is a very busy time for gardeners; time to get going!

PS almost forgot the onions. Many people grow onions from sets (baby plants) not seeds because they are such slow growers. If you want onions of any size, the best way to get them is to plant them in the fall and leave them. By the next summer you will have good sized onions. Otherwise plant them with the carrots etc and you will have green onion sized onions this summer/fall.

It takes experience and practice and some trial and error! Next year you will know a lot more about what to plant when and where in your garden!
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eminent
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Thanks for all the great information. Thats helped me alot. I can now get started with everything and feel more comfortable in doing so. Thanks again.

keskat
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For your frost date, this is the site I used - I'm a recent transplant to my area, so I had no idea what my general growing season would be. :) Good luck with your garden!

[url]https://davesgarden.com/guides/freeze-frost-dates/[/url]
Bloom where you're planted!

eminent
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Great! that is a perfect tool to find out exactly what I wanted. Thanks alot.

Bobberman
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Lots of Pa. people here in the same boat with this cold weather! I put my onion sets in last eek and will put them in every week for the next few weeks. I plant sets till july so I have the nice green tops for my salads! I usually make borders for my other crops with onions or radish! I use the companion plant method all the time by mixing a bed of three or more seeds! I always plant carrots in with my lettuce and enjoy carrots after the lettuce is done! Try the cylidrical beets they ae easy togrow and easy top tell when ready since the beet tself is above the ground! Put a couple cold frames in now and enjoy the early season till the frost date for pa. ends in the middle of may! Put some marigolds all through the garden to help with insect problems and the naturtiums flowers for beauty . Hope that helps some!
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garden5
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Now is when you want to be starting your eggplants, tomatoes, and peppers.

If you browse the seed-starting forum, you will be sure to find a lot of good ideas. Everyone does their seed-starting a little differently, but the same principles still apply.

For a basic guideline, you will want to use a T-8 fluorescent shoplight. These can be purchased at Walmart or Lowes for about $15. They are 4 ft. long and hold 2 long, tube-like bulbs.

Next up, for the bulbs, you will want to use 6000K or 6500K bulbs. The reason for this is that bulbs will either put out a cool, bluish light (blue spectrum) or a warmer (red spectrum) light.

You are going with the cool-spectrum bulbs because this type of light produces leaf and stem growth (what you want) whereas red-spectrum light produces flowering and fruiting (not really what you want in this case).

Sorry if the above sounds complicated, it really isn't.

Now once you have your light, you will want to plant your seeds in whatever planing containers you have and then suspend the light over them.


The light should be no more than a few inches above the plant. Since it is nowhere near as strong as sunlight, it must be kept close.

Next up, you will want to keep the light on for about 16 hrs. a day. Preferably during normal daylight hours. Do to this, you could turn them on when you go to work in the morning and turn them off when you go to bed. You can also buy a timer for around $5 that will do it automatically.

Once this is done, just water them periodically and watch them grow.

Once all danger of frost has passed, plant them outside, but harden them off first. This is done by bringing them outside for a few hours each day about a week or two before you plant them out.

Good luck and if you have any more question, just let us know.
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ruggr10
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johnny's seeds also has a great page for seed starting. You list your last frost date and it tells you everything from when to start seeds to when to put them out.

eminent
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Alright great guys. I got everything I think up to this point under control thanks to everyones help. Thanks alot once agan to everyone!

eminent
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Hey everyone. I had another question for starting some seeds indoors. When starting radish carrots and turnips what way would you start them? By that I mean what type of container would you use? I feel like these are things that couldnt be started in cell trays or maybe not even in the 4 in peat cups so what do you guys use?

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rainbowgardener
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Usually root crops aren't started indoors. They don't take to transplanting real well. But they are cool weather stuff. If your climate isn't that different from mine, you could probably plant them directly in the ground now.

The seed packet probably says "as soon as the ground can be worked." That means the ground is unfrozen and dried out enough to be crumbly not clumpy. I planted seeds outdoors last weekend. And yes it snowed on them after that, but that is fine, it's all cold hardy stuff and it hadn't sprouted yet anyway.
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eminent
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ok good to know. Thanks alot.

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