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First attempt at planting seeds

BeforeToday I thought I’d try something that I’ve been purposely avoiding … planting seeds. I’ve never planted seeds before in my life – and fear of failure and thereby revealing a serious lack of “green-fingerness” has kept me from trying this. (I do recall planting beans on cotton wool as a child but that’s as far as it went – I have no recollection of what happened to the beans after they sprouted – I’m guessing they died).

But now I’ve been dabbling in this wonderful world of gardening, my Camellias are flowering successfully and I have a veggie planter full of thriving veggies and my confidence levels are up! Plus, I keep reading about how rewarding and easy it is to grow plants from seed, so I decided … the time is now! I have the perfect little planter that’ s been waiting around for some action, compost in a bag and a collection of seeds in packets. The biggest decision I had to make was which seeds to plant. I have Marigolds, California poppies, Nasturtiums, radishes, carrots, chives and onion seeds, all in little packets that I’ve been buying – though why I bought them when I had no intention of sowing them I’m not quite sure (OK, I’m an impulse shopper and those colourful little seed packets just look so darn cute!)

[one_half]Before …Before ....[/one_half]

[one_half_last]and AfterAnd after[/one_half_last]

I chose to plant the nasturtiums. The reason I chose them is because the seeds felt really big through the packet – so I thought that would be easiest as my first attempt because I can handle them without dropping them all over the place. The “type” according to the packet is Nasturtium “Scarlet Jewel”. Now I see the packet says to plant directly into flower beds – why oh why do I always read the instructions AFTER I do something? Nevermind …

It all went quickly and easily – not too much mess, no fuss. I covered the planter box drainage holes with stones, added the compost to the plant box, firmed it down to get rid of air pockets and then took the seeds out of the packet, spaced them equally around the planter and then covered them with a 4mm layer of compost. Firmed it all down again, placed it on my plant shelf and gave it a good watering. The packet says to keep the seeds moist whilst they germinate and that germination takes six to ten days. We shall see … this better work or I will be mortified!

I’ll report back in 6 – 10 days, hopefully with sprouting nasturtiums!

Any advice on how to complete project “Christine plants seeds” successfully, will be most appreciated!

Happy gardening

By Christine

Dominated by large trees on a medium sized property, my garden is very shaded. With no “full sun” areas I have to plant shade and partial shade loving plants. I love shrubs and flowers including camellias and azaleas but Roses and Irises are my favourite and getting these to thrive is a challenge …

20 replies on “First attempt at planting seeds”

Christine, Whether your seeds be big or small, please don’t plant them too close together or you’ll spend the rest of spring replanting seedlings – my lesson learnt from last year.

Hi b_a_g – I’ve learnt from Barbie not to just plant the seeds all higgledy piggledy – I see her painstakingly thin out those seedlings one by one … I don’t have the patience for that! Seriously, that is not my idea of fun. Not even for a pretty garden could I sit and do that, so I carefully placed the seeds about 5 cm apart and there are only about 30 in that planter box thingy of mine. 30 I can deal with … hundreds – not a chance! I know exactly what would happen to hundreds 🙂 (rhymes with tin!)

It always seems, where seeds and I are involved, that if I care about the outcome-its bad. Bad, bad, bad. But if I just throw some down and say heck with it, I get a wonderful surprise.

Nasturtiums tend to be a bit “weedy” if you don’t watch out. They took over a whole bed in my garden – we had to rip them all out because they were suffocating everything else. Good luck with the seeds though – should be fun to watch them grow.

Instructions are for babies!… Erh… What I mean to say is, I often get over-excited and forget reading instructions, but I guess that’s inevitable when amateurs become passionate about something.

I hope your nasturtiums will do you proud, though; sowing your own plants just makes it so much easier to fill your garden with pretty plants without breaking the bank.

Thanks Debs! I like Nasturtiums too though they do tend to get out of control if left to their own devices. At least thats my experience here in my garden.

I’m excited to watch your seeds sprout and grow. I love watching mine and hopefully this year they will all do ok with the transplant. I was wondering, does it matter how many seeds you put in the planter box? The more the merrier? or follow the packets and still plant with the spacing recommended?

Hi Heather – I really don’t know how many seeds could or should go in the planter box – I think most people just scatter them and thin them out once they sprout. I spaced mine a few centimetres apart but will transplant them once they have established themselves.

Well done Chris!! It is quite a step to get the growing from seed right everytime. I don’t think even the experienced gardener get’s it right everytime. I personally prefer to grow from seed. I feel I am part of the whole process when I do that. It is a great feeling to see those first shoots breaking the surface. I am sure you will also jump for joy, like me, when you experience it!! Have fun and let me know IMMEDIATELY when you see the first shoot!!

Hi Christine, This is the first year in forty that we have not planted seeds, it feels like freedom. Nasturtiums as you have probably found out are a hardy annual and in your part of the world in particular should be sown directly outside as you found out. If I were you I would rummage around pick out the seeds and start again. Other seeds where you find that they should be started in seed trays! they really do not need the drainage holes covered. Gosh am I sounding like a smart arse, I really don’t know everything about gardening, just that I enjoy it.

don’t be too hard on yourself..I am still learning the tricky art of seed planting…some of us have it down pat and some of us (me) still struggle to get it right…some successes and some failures…I start mine indoors with a heat pad and grow light which has helped my success a bit…I just planted some seeds this weekend and we shall see…good luck!!

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