Posts Tagged ‘starting seedlings’

We took a trip up to Philadelphia yesterday and noticed that three new buildings had been erected near the Schuylkill River since last we visited. Mostly what I feel is that more sun will be blocked out and there may be even less parking spots for people with cars, but I may be wrong on both points. At least they are very shiny 🙂

Small update on our seedlings. Here is what they are looking like now:

We started our tomatoes and here is what we have planted (each container has 4 seeds in it):

Super Sauce Tomatoes (6 pots)
Sunchocola Hybrid Tomato (1 pot)
Brandy Boy Hybrid (3 pots)
Cherokee Purple (1 pot)
Kellogg (1 pot)
Juliet (2 pots)

Today we are starting

Elephant Ear Sweet Peppers (1 pot)
Yellow Pear Tomato (1 pot)
Beefsteak Tomato (1 pot)
Roma Tomato (2 pots)
Brunswick Cabbages (3 pots)

That’s about it. Enjoy your weekend!

Last year, we got coffee grounds (Starbucks says “grinds”) from a Starbucks in our Safeway store. We had to leave them a bucket which they would fill and then call us when it was full. We would then go and pick it up. Well, this was not the most efficient way of getting the grounds. This year, while we still wanted them, we decided that we needed a better way to get them.

My mom called a few Starbuckses (what is the plural of Starbucks?) which we drive past on any given week and found one that leaves large bags of coffee grounds outside of their establishment for people to come and collect. Upon going there the following night, she and my dad picked up three trash bags full of coffee filters and grounds. We now have a trash bin dedicated to holding all of our coffee until we can use it. It’s almost half full. Our dad said he’d pick up 2 bags every night on the way home from work until we have enough!

(By the way, we enlarged the holes in our compost tumblers. We made them way too small and our compost did not get enough air. Now our holes are almost 1″ in diameter and hopefully that will suffice.)

Also, since last we wrote about our seedlings, the number of plants on our table has grown significantly. We now have four really bright LED lights that pretty much light our family room, the place where we eat, and our kitchen all at once. They serve as a heat source and a light source in one, and our plants like them a lot. The pictures included are the bucket of coffee stuff and the entire table with all the plants which inhabit it.

Almost all of the plants shown are pepper, tomato, and tomatillo plants. Only a few lettuces, cabbages, onions, and basil are in the mix.

Since we last wrote about our very first tomato seedling of this year, a lot of things have been planted. Slightly less have sprouted. But the seedlings that have come up so far are:

Sunchocola Hybrid Tomato
California Wonder Bell Peppers
Golden Giant II Sweet Pepper Hybrid
Green Envy Cherry Tomatoes
Braveheart Lettuce
Jalapeno Peppers
Sweet Banana Peppers
Rio Grande Verde Tomatillo
Yellow Cayenne Peppers
Lunchbox Peppers
Basil Plants (for indoors)
Anaheim Chili Peppers
Bull Nosed Large Bell
Golden Acres Cabbage

In general, we have 4-6 of each pepper plant, more of the jalapeno and golden giants. Since peppers take much longer than tomato plants to get mature enough by the time we plant outside, we start these first.

Just about all of the peppers we are planning for our garden have been started. Next to be started in the immediate future are the rest of our tomatoes, onions, and purple tomatillos. My dad and I are going to build a very small greenhouse which will probably be about 6′ x 8′ and hopefully portable. We want to put it on our deck at first for a variety of personal reasons.

Our sister came over yesterday and brought kimchi with her which we enjoyed yesterday with our Asian-themed lunch. Tonight’s supper was kimchi, rice, and roasted seaweed. We get kimchi about once every 2-3 years, but when we have it, we really enjoy it and just eat it with some rice usually.

Dessert was a slice of chocolate bourbon pecan pie. My parents don’t like the taste of bourbon in it very much, but I think it’s partly because they used Jim Beam. Perhaps if we used a higher quality bourbon it would be better. After all, it came in a plastic bottle….

This year, we’re trying to make our garden really good and we also want an extra early start, so our mom is getting products for our soil to be used a bit later (urea, potash, bone meal, and vermiculite for example) as well as supplies for starting plants inside. We have also ordered most, if not all, of our seeds.

This year, our new effort will be celery (Tall Utah 52-70R). Since celery requires a very long growing season, we are starting our seedlings now. We will also be building a few cold frames and raised beds this winter. For our celery, we will build a long but narrow (1 foot) raised bed. It should be very exciting!

For right now, though, we are just using our grow light for our mom’s indoor plants and also for a few cucumber seedlings. We were trying to see if some old seeds were still viable. They were, so now we have 4 cucumber plants indoors in the winter. Hmmmm.

Anyway, since our plants must be inside for the winter and since we don’t have great light in our house, we wanted to put some extra light on them. At first, we put them under a halogen light bulb, but found that the soil was steaming when we checked on our plants just hours after we turned the light on. That wasn’t going to work. So instead, we ordered a light bulb stand and a really bright light bulb that doesn’t get too hot.

It is really bright, as in you can hardly look at it, and the light bulb tripod is very convenient. The cucumbers are up, and they’re looking good, and my mom thinks she might be able to see a tiny celery starting to come up.

If you’re ready to start planning for your gardens this winter and you are looking for a better light than you currently have, you may want to look into this grow light and tripod.

This is the website from which we got the light bulbs:

The tripod is just a 7 ft light stand that is actually supposed to be used for photography, but you can use it as a grow light stand instead. It’s great for adjusting the direction and height of your lights and was very affordable on eBay.

By the way, we start our seedlings in our oven. The light in there keeps the oven slightly warm and germination is very fast in there. It’s kind of funny and we have tried other methods, but we just keep going back to our oven and oven light. Once the seeds germinate, we take them out and they go under a grow light in another room.