Posted on

how to germinate seeds

About half the old seeds sprouted, and the rest were duds. I planted the sprouted seeds and watched the seedlings carefully to see if they would grow. I didn’t expect much from them, but they did grow into healthy transplants that were eventually planted into the garden.

A seed is triggered to sprout by warmth and moisture. Normally, you sow a seed into a growing medium, such as damp seed starting mix or peat pots. Then you cover the seed with soil, water, place in a warm spot, and wait for the seed to sprout and break through the soil surface.

Benefits of Pre-Sprouting Seeds

This article was originally published on March 5, 2014. It has been updated with additional information, photos, and video.

One of the most frustrating things about starting vegetables from seed is waiting for them to emerge from the soil. Pre-germinating seeds is a great method for the impatient gardener, because it lets you see your seeds sprout before they are covered with soil.

After experiencing how easy it was to see which seeds germinated using paper towels, I decided to pre-sprout more of my indoor seedlings. I routinely pre-germinate tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, Swiss chard, melons, cucumber, squash, cilantro, spinach, and kale.

One of the main reasons why you should seriously consider sprouting seeds is carton is biodegradability. You don’t have to worry about throwing the cartons away once you’re ready to move the seeds to their pots. If you lack muffin trays, you can grow seeds in egg trays instead. Fill them with soil and spray some water, and you’re good to go. Another option is to use eggshells. Cut them in half, fill them with soil, and add a minuscule amount of water. Then place the eggshells in the tray.

Germinating seeds in soil is remarkably easy, provided you have the right kind of soil (although compost always works). The best part is you can be imaginative and creative by putting them in recyclables! Take, for example, the muffin trays, which are perfect when you are growing different sprouts simultaneously.

Wide soup bowls are perfect for growing fruits and veggies that also tend to be huge once they grow like pineapples, for instance.

4. How To Germinate Seeds In Cartons

If you’re looking for more room to plant many seeds, then I suggest you get the tin cans. They’re wide and deep you may no longer need to move the plants to pots anymore. I love the look of tin cans as is, but if you want to be artsy, you can spray paint them with bold, lively colors.

Don’t have pumpkin? More likely, you have citrus fruits like lemons. Use the halves the way you do pumpkins. That’s it!

A busybee (yup, pun intended)? Water is an essential element when you’re still trying to germinate seeds. If you don’t have time to water it regularly, you can try doing this simple process. The self-watering technique involves cutting a plastic soda container about two-thirds and a third. Fill the two-thirds container with soil for your seeds while you place water into your one-third container. Put the two-thirds container in your one-third container. That’s it! The roots will consume whatever amount of water it needs, so you add more only when there’s little to none left.

Learning how to germinate seeds fast involves knowing the factors that affect its growth. These include water, light source (sprouts grow toward the light), type of germinated seed, type of soil, and season. Different seeds require different quantities and needs for each of these elements, so doing your research FIRST before you start the process of seed germination is important. Needless to say, this guide will give you the basics.