Starting a Home Garden, Phase 2: Sowing Seeds

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Planting seeds

Finally, the day I planned to plant my seeds arrived! I spread out all my supplies right on my dining room table (fancy, I know), and got to work sowing seeds. 

A few weeks ago, I wrote in detail about creating a plan to grow a vegetable and herb garden this summer. If you’d like to read about the planning phase, you’ll find it here.

I filled seed starting mix in the seed trays (affiliate link), filling up the pods about 75% of the way. Then I sprinkled the seeds, 2-3 per pod, and covered with a thin layer of dirt. The directions said to put ¼ inch layer of dirt on top, but I wasn’t super precise. I labeled each tray and put them under a sunny window.

Seed sowing supplies
Seed sowing supplies.

Watering seeds

After I had planted the seeds, I knew I needed to water them, but wasn’t quite sure how. Pouring water on top would move the seeds around and make a huge mess. Google directed me to water with a spray bottle. I dug one out of the garage, and misted them well every 2-3 days.

Aside from watering, there wasn’t much to do but wait for the seeds to sprout…but then my husband brought up the topic of grow lights.

Sowing seeds in seed trays
Planted tomato seeds. Dirt everywhere.

Do I need grow lights for sowing seeds?

My husband said that when he grew plants from seeds as a kid with his grandfather, they always put grow lights very close to the dirt and moved them up as the plants grew taller. Huh, I thought. Do I need those? I hate buying items that are only going to have one task. I started asking around and unfortunately, no one had grow lights I could borrow.

Cilantro sprouts.

I looked them up on Amazon and did a little research. Ultimately, I decided I would go ahead without grow lights and see what happened to my seeds. I knew they were from a trusted seed company and in a sunny-ish place. There isn’t a ton of sun here this time of year so I was hesitant, but hoped for the best. 

Basil sprouts in seed trays.
Basil sprouts.

We have sprouts!

Lo and behold, 7-ish days later, the seeds started to sprout! And not just a few, most pods had at least one sprout, some even more. Once I saw sprouts, I started watering from below by filling the bottom trays with water in addition to watering from the top with the spray bottle. They seem happy and are growing well. 

Now just to keep them going til mid-April when I can plant them outside. Fingers crossed.


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13 replies on “Starting a Home Garden, Phase 2: Sowing Seeds”

Yes! I can’t wait. This is my first attempt growing anything from seed, so I am still a little in disbelief that these tiny plants may grow up to be big enough to eat ;). Please let me know if you have any tips for me. I really appreciate your feedback.

Thanks for posting, you made it very easy to understand and follow along with what to do. Plants usually come to my house to die but I may try this!

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