Thursday, April 4, 2013

We're back in the lab! H.E. #35- New Ways To Start Seeds

First off, a quick note to say "Hi! I've missed you this past 10 months or so! How have you been?" I have been good, but extremely busy! We brought home a new, cuddly (code for extra-high maintenance) baby boy and started a new business while preparing for my DH's retirement from Active Duty military. We've also undergone some MAJOR dietary changes to help with my children's developmental disorders (ADD and ADHD) which you can read about here. This means that I have spent countless more hours in the kitchen and on-line looking for ideas as to what to feed my family, and how to cook with an overload of new ingredients.  And yes, we've also  continued to homeschool during all of these big changes, which I am so thankful for. However, experiments and blogging got left in the dust. I had so many ideas swirling around in my fatigued head, but alas they never made it onto my screen.  I am grateful that (I think) I am tentatively back in a state of life and mind that I can conduct a few more experiments, make an occasional post, and answer those neglected comments that are still sitting in my inbox.  

Okay, so enough about me! Let's get on with the experiments!  Today I decided to get my seeds started for my expanding garden. We are still in the same rental that we've had the past 4 years, so we still haven't found our homestead yet.  However, with some handy ideas that I've gleaned off of Pinterest, we are expanding our growing space with new, portable beds. (More on those later, for now let's get back to the seeds.)

The two experiments we began today are 1) Starting seeds in half of a broken egg shell, and 2) Using the clear plastic produce cases from Costco as mini-greenhouses to help them sprout sooner.  

Not the best picture since the sun was shining directly on the table as I snapped it.

The egg shell idea makes so much sense in light of all of the calcium and other nutrients the plants will get to absorb as they sprout. The only downside is that they are small, so I foresee having to re-plant them into either newspaper pots or peat pots again in a few weeks.  Also, they are fragile, so the kiddos didn't get to help me start the seeds today, although I placated them by telling them they can help when we move them to beds later.

The Costco trays seem to work well, but time will tell. Most of the containers already had holes in them for ventilation. The apple ones did not, though, so I just used a steak knife to poke and twist some holes for air flow.  Now they are all just sitting on a folding table in my living room in front of my sunniest windows, and I will be watching and waiting to see what happens next!

Have you gotten your garden groove on yet? If not, happy planting, and if so, I pray that you enjoy a bountiful harvest!

Blessings to you and your homestead,
Hillary At Home

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