Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Tightwad Tuesday's Tips

Some people are born organized, not me. Some people are born spenders and some are born savers. I am definitely the latter. I have yet to convince my teenager that frugality is fun, but where there is life there is hope right. I love to do things the easiest, cheapest way possible and so I thought I would share my frugal tip for seed starting today. You have probably seen them everywhere. There are hundreds of posts on the internet for making newspaper pots. The problem with newspaper pots is that I can never seem to regulate the moisture and keep the newspaper from becoming a weak soggy mess.
The easiest way for me to start seeds is to use ziplock baggies. I know a lot of gardeners germinate in baggies with coffee filters or paper towels, but for me it seemed to take twice as long. ( Have I mentioned in the past that I am not the most patient person.)
My method is to use ziplock sandwich bags that I buy from the dollar store. I fill the bag about 1/3 full with my moist seed starting mix. Then I dump the seeds that I have soaked overnight ( I soak them all) with about 1.5 ounces water that the seeds soaked in right into the baggie. I seal it up making sure there is air in it and set it in a warm bright spot, indoors in winter and outdoors in the shade in the warmer parts of the year. I don't open it again until I see some germination beginning. Then I leave the little plants in the bags until they have reached the top. By this time, the seedlings are ready to pot up into their starter pots.

Learning this trick increased my germination success tremendously. The frugal part is that I buy the cheapest bags at the dollar store roughly 25 bags for $1.50 and the baggies are re-usable.
When I want to root things that need a lot of humidity, I use the larger baggies and set the container right into the bag. As long as there is condensation on the inside of the bags, the medium is moist enough. This method is ideal for starting plumeria, daylily and basically all seeds.
Hope this works wonders for your propagation potential.


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