What to start indoors?

saly(Z7, NW, USA)March 3, 2013

I am wondering what seeds to start indoors now....so that they can be ready for transplanting outside in a month!!

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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Edible or ornamental?

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 10:54AM
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You can speed things up by planing indoors or winter sow them in milk jugs outside. There is a winter sowing forum here on GW.

Sometimes, I buy lettuce starts to transplant & plant seeds at the same time to speed things up. I pick outer baby leaves & stop buying from the grocery store as soon as possible. I've not seen lettuce starts out yet, but soon.

The last frost date doesn't matter so much as the soil temperatures & for warm weather vegetables air temperature, too! That's why the milk jugs work so well. If you can provide just a bit of protection cold hardy plants do fine. I have self sown baby lettuce, parsley, & kale out side now; however, they've not grown much. Hopefully the sunshine days this week will kick start the soil temp a bit.

Here's more about the topic from a previous post.

Here is a link that might be useful: Timing of Vegetable seed starting

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 1:21PM
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Patrick888(z8 SeaTac WA)

There are hundreds upon hundreds of options to plant.... appropriate answers will depend on what seeds you plan on starting.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 2:20PM
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saly(Z7, NW, USA)

Thx for the reponses!
I plan to plant tomatoes, carrots, lettuce, green beans, radish, peas, cucs, garlic and cilantro.
These are the ones I had planted before in my raised bed. Once started tomatoes indoors and had 30 plants, many I gave away. Also beans were started indoors.
Can anybody suggest other veggies that come out good in Pac NW!!
Will melons yield good?

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 10:05PM
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Embothrium(USDA 8 Sunset 5 WA)

Melons you would want to grow under cover, tomatoes are much better there also. Make plastic tunnels over raised beds.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 11:37PM
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Small hybrid 2- or 3-pound melons can do OK in a perfect summer without special treatment, anything larger, use the cover as mentioned. Melons are pretty tricky to transplant.

Cilantro grows so quickly, not sure of the advantage of starting indoors.

We have reasonable success with various pepper seeds.
Summer squash can do well from seed or transplant.

    Bookmark   March 4, 2013 at 11:58PM
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Success depends on many variables: microclimate, soil condition, hours of sun, moisture.... Be careful about the soil mix if you're buying ingredients. Not all compost is good for edibles. Lots of posts here on this forum about this topic.

Grow what you want to eat or if space what you like to see growing. A lot of crops thrive here if enough moisture & sun.

In part shade garden our Red Russian kale & Italian parsley thrive. I let them self sow, so we eat year round except for this time of year when we've eaten most of the mature plants except for the growing points. Easy to recognize seedlings & transplant if desired or let grow as a ground cover until you need that spot for another plant. Kale once chopped fine almost disappears in any dish.

Swiss chard & broccoli grow well & you can pick for up to 2 years.
Garlic is larger if fall planted. I've done it both ways.
Onion sets for green onions. Onions from seeds or starts for larger bulbs.
Cabbage is a space hog, so we grow red varieties for the antioxidants.

If you have space available plan for mid-July plantings for fall & winter harvest. Peas, onion sets, & lettuces can be harvested by July for your fall & win garden. Plus the peas will help enrich the soil.

If you like strawberries now is the time to purchase starts for your own fresh, sweet berries. Our climate is perfect for them! Plants will be more productive in the ground. Strawberry jars or hanging baskets are somewhat of a gimmick, more ornamental than useful. Everbearing are ideal if you can keep watered in summer; otherwise go for a June bearing variety.


    Bookmark   March 7, 2013 at 12:55PM
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