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Recycle to Start Seeds Indoors

To start seeds indoors, first be sure you have enough light. More homegrown seedlings are probably lost to this one factor than to any other. Vegetable and flower seedlings grown under low-light conditions will most likely be leggy and weak, and many will fall over under their own weight after they are 3 to 4 inches tall. If you do not have a sunny room or back porch with a southern exposure, you will probably need supplemental lights. A fluorescent, shop light with one warm-white and one cool-white bulb.

Use a soilless or peat-lite mix to start seedlings, since garden soil contains disease organisms that can be highly destructive to small plants. You can mix your own peat-lite mix -- 50 percent vermiculite or perlite and 50 percent fine sphagnum peat, by volume, is excellent for starting seeds. Fertilizer at half the normal strength may be added to the mixture. Mix all together well.

Packaging materials, both natural and man-made, can be given a second life by starting seeds indoors ...

Please download .pdf file below for the complete article.

Provided courtesy of the Virginia Cooperative Extension at www.ext.vt.edu.