winter sowing

elaine_maine(5 ME)October 15, 2004

Scroll down to the winter sowing forum. Check out the FAQs! This is a great way to get through the winter. I did it last year both at home and at my Assisted Living Center. VERY rewarding.

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veilchen(5b southern Maine)

I know so many people say it works great and are really into it, but I haven't been very successful when trying it. The seedlings don't sprout much earlier for me than if they were in the ground. And I know there's many different containers/covers one can try, but everything I've used gets blown over/knocked around/cracked by snow and ice.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 8:02AM
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samuraisix(z4 Maine)

Elaine - thank you for reminding me, I copied all the information last summer and had forgotten by winter! I just don't have the light or the room, and have been disappointed w/sowing indoors, I did sow outdoors this spring, but rain, shade, sun, wind, my inexperience, and Blackflies! - you pick, led to weak seedlings and plants that either disappeared or grew strong, but didn't bloom. I'm definitely trying ws this year. Veilchen - I'll keep your experience in mind when I pick containers - placement - Thank you both.

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 11:52AM
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Do you think if I put my seedling containers inside my empty affixed window boxes would be a good idea? Josie_2

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 12:40PM
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elaine_maine(5 ME)

This year instead of styrofoam cups I've been saving margerine and cool whip tubs and will use other heavier containers that won't dry out as fast and won't blow as easily. I really didn't have much trouble with the styrofoam because I crammed them together in a tray with holes. Even when they blew over and the tops blew off I merely rescued them and there were no consequences. I found that they were stronger plants and even had some perennials and hollyhocks that bloomed first year!

    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 3:31PM
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I tried the winter solice sowing. It was the most rushed crazy feeling I had trying to get all those seeds sown on that day. I keep mine inside cold frames and cold green houses ( this can be a problem with sunny days going up to the 80's inside and cloudy cold days being below freezing. So once the seeds germ, I feel compelled to heroicly try to keep them warm enough to survive.

I also have collected all my milk cartons to use over the year as well.

Most of the time this method produced the strongest and largest plants in my gardens. However, once these seedlings got growing, and living in Maine is a challenge to grow things as well, I transplanted my seedlings into largers containers to encourage them as need be. I think by using a greenhouse I have gone from zone 5 to possible zone 6 or 7?! Unless I use a heat source, well then it is like being in zones 9 and 10 during the winter time!

Good luck all, and remember to write down what you did and label label. I'll be thinking of my GW friends on the winter solice day and feeling the thrill of sowing the seeds.


    Bookmark   October 16, 2004 at 11:47PM
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chicken_lady(z3/4 Maine)

I planted in milk bottles a couple of years ago. At least half of them came up. I didn't do it last year but think I might do some this winter. I taped my jugs closed and poked holes in the bottom and left the caps off. Then I set them on the ground on the north side of shed beside the house. And then I forgot about them. They didn't get cooked cuz they weren't in the sun and the were buried under the snow most of the winter. The plants that did come up were really nice and strong.... yup, I think I'll do some again this year!


    Bookmark   October 21, 2004 at 1:35AM
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I am still saving containers and starting to get all my things together for the winter sowing event!

    Bookmark   November 10, 2004 at 11:22PM
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come on veilchen, be one with us. Its almost time to sow. Besides seed is cheep and its so fun to share the moments.

CHeers ~?~

    Bookmark   December 12, 2004 at 10:36PM
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veilchen(5b southern Maine)

I think I'll try some cold-season annuals and perennials in my unheated greenhouse. At least in there the containers won't get blown around. I have several different varieties of delphinium seed that I'll do instead of starting inside like usual. Also some multi-colored Cal. poppies (peaches, pinks, etc.) that I'll try vs. direct-sowing.

    Bookmark   December 13, 2004 at 7:18AM
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Yeah....alright and welcome back to the winter sowing frenzy, friend!

Its Wed night and that cold snap is here...hard to believe it could drop so quickly, my hot tea froze in its cup I left in my car in just 6 hours! The strange part was trying to figure out what was on the end of my tea bag in the dark, when I pulled out my drink frozen dangling from my tea bag. lol

Alright, so who else is among us now?

    Bookmark   December 16, 2004 at 1:54AM
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I had the flu and couldnt bring myself to get out to participate.:( Hope everyone else was able to have fun.

I think I'll just sow seeds on New Years Day instead. I should have my strength back by then, I like to sow alot!

Cheers all-

    Bookmark   December 26, 2004 at 6:10PM
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