Thursday, March 4, 2010

Started Seeds Today

First of all, a gratuitous chick photo:

Planted seeds today.

This is the first time I have tried to start them this early using flourescent lights. We are using regular flourescent lights, not special grow lights, and I am putting them on a 16 hour timer.

So, I have these big windows in the back which get pretty good light since they face basically south. Dave got a light fixture and we hung it from chains so I can raise it up as the plants grow. The pans are plastic boot pans that are supposed to go by your front door for shovels and snowy boots and the like.

I made the pots from wide strips of newspaper. I found the instructions last year, and there are as many ways of making these as one can imagine! Next time I will use a bigger can instead of the jam jar, but these are pretty good.

Take newspaper (try and not use colored ink but it is getting harder) and cut it in half then half again so you get long strips about 5 - 5.5 inches wide, and the length of the paper, about 22-23 inches.

Roll the jar/can/glass (be sure the sides are straight) up in the paper, leaving about 2 inches hanging over the open end of the jar.

Tuck the paper into the jar in 3-4 big sort of pleats and crease it pretty well using the lip of the jar.

Pull out the jar, flip it and stick it back in using the flat bottom of the jar this time to mash the folded paper flat.

Fill with dirt and plant your seeds!

Last year I made a dozen of these using a full half sheet of the newspaper folded in half and it was overkill - the paper took a very long time to break down in the soil and I ended up cutting it out after a couple of weeks.

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