Mar 1 – Seed Starting

There are many ways to start seeds indoors for a home garden and I have only tried a couple but have struck upon a system that works well for me. I have 6 shelves in the basement that are hung against a wall that Donny insulated and then built out with peg board. On each shelf, I have, over time, added heating mats to make sure the soil is warm enough to germinate the seeds. Each shelf also has a fluorescent shop light hanging on chains that could be lowered and raised, but in truth, I have not bothered with doing that. The lights are on timers so that for about 14-16 hours per day, the seedlings are getting "sun". I haven’t found the need to use special "grow" light bulbs but have seen recommendations to use both warm and cool fluorescents together , I have not tried that either. I have been reading tips about adding a fan for some part of the day to get plants to grow stronger and to make the transition to outdoor conditions less stressful. I think I will try this this year, but I doubt it can fully replace the "hardening off" time needed – more about that as the time to consider it grows near…
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