It's spring sowing season

It's spring sowing season

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No need to have a green thumb to get started in seedling production. At the end of winter, all you need is a few seeds, a little potting soil and recovery material to see your own seedlings rise, warm in your kitchen or living room. In a few weeks, you will be able to transplant them into your vegetable patch, on your terrace or your flower boxes, with the assurance of having healthy and quality plants and vegetables. And what a pleasure to see your seeds grow!

Planting tomatoes, more difficult but so satisfying!

Seedlings, how does it work?

The principle of sowing is very simple: instead of buying flower and vegetable plants in a garden center, we plant our own seeds and observe the young shoots emerging from the ground. If each variety has its specific sowing period (indicated on the seed bags), most summer flowers and vegetables are sown in late winter, between February and early April. The sowing is generally carried out in the warmth, in a greenhouse or in his kitchen, then when the young shoots have grown and are more resistant, they are planted in the ground or in the planters on his terrace. Entirely organic (because you do not use a phytosanitary product), your "homemade" plants are also more resistant ... and much more economical!

Sowing is done in yogurt pots, crates, plastic glasses or even rolls of toilet paper as we see on the blog How I do

What do I need?

The first thing to do is to get seeds from plants: tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, eggplant, peppers, but also geraniums, nasturtiums, sage, verbena, parsley ... In any case, follow the advice written on the sachet. On the material side, you can either invest in seed boxes, or make recovery by opting for a crate lined with a trash bag, a polystyrene bin recovered from the fishmonger, empty yogurt pots, egg boxes, plastic cups, large pots ... The important thing is to wash the containers well beforehand, and to make small holes at the bottom so that the water does not collect. Get special sowing compost or otherwise just mix potting soil and sand. Finally, don't forget the labels to identify your shoots in a few weeks!

Also consider sowing aromatic plants, such as basil

When and how to sow at home?

The first sowing takes place at the beginning of February, taking care to check the ideal period depending on the variety. To put the odds on its side, we also take a look at our lunar calendar and we sow in a rising moon and in fruit-day for eggplants and melons, in leaf day for aromatics and salads, in day- root for carrots and in flower day for petunias. Then fill your containers with soil-sand mixture, sprinkle lightly and tamp the soil well. Place the small seeds and press them gently with your finger, then add a small film of soil. For larger seeds, make a small hole with a pencil, place the seed and cover. Then sprinkle with a very fine spray bottle or sprinkler.

Tomato seedlings in the greenhouse of Château de la Bourdaisière, in Touraine

The secret of successful sowing

To grow well, seedlings need water, but not too much, and lots of light. Water regularly in fine rain with lukewarm water, and take care not to soak the earth, that would risk "melting" your plantations! For light, place your seedlings just under a window, paying attention to drafts. You can also make a homemade mini greenhouse with a bell or a recycled plastic cover. And if the brightness is not sufficient, invest in a specific neon that reproduces natural light. Once the seedlings start to rise, if you have several shoots side by side, keep only the most resistant, and remove the others or transplant them elsewhere.

Planting your own seedlings provides real satisfaction, enjoy!

Last step: towards the garden or the terrace

Once your shoots have four or five leaves, they are ready to head out into the great outdoors. Make sure it is no longer likely to freeze in your area, and acclimatize your seedlings by gradually removing them a few hours a day for a short week. Then plant them in their final place, in the ground or in a pot. Well done, you can be proud of your productions!