Inflation Rising, Do This Now To Help Save Food Cost

Food costs have gone up tremendously, and with supply chain issues affecting shipping, it’s a good idea to get ready. One way you can do that is easily with spring just around the corner.

Start a garden.

Is going to solve all your problems? No. But every little bit helps, here are five tips to get your seedlings growing so your plants are ready to head outside as soon as spring sets in.

1. Choose Your Seeds Wisely
Before anything else, decide on the vegetables you want to grow. Consider your local climate, the space you have available, and what you and your family enjoy eating. Some popular and easy-to-grow options for beginners include tomatoes, peppers, lettuce, and cucumbers. Purchasing seeds from a reputable supplier is crucial, as quality seeds lead to robust plants.

2. Gather Your Supplies
You don’t need much to start seeds indoors, but a few key supplies will make the process smoother:

Seed starting mix: A lightweight and sterile mix is essential for healthy seed growth.
Containers: You can use anything from specially designed seed trays to repurposed household items, as long as they have drainage holes.
Light source: Seedlings need a lot of light to grow strong. A sunny window can work, but for best results, consider a grow light.
Watering can or spray bottle: Young seedlings need to be kept moist but not waterlogged.
3. Plant Your Seeds
Fill your containers with the seed starting mix, moisten it with water, and plant your seeds following the depth and spacing recommendations on the seed packet. Cover the seeds lightly with soil and gently water them. Label each container with the plant’s name and the sowing date to keep track of what you’ve planted and when.

4. Provide Proper Care
Place your containers in a warm location to encourage germination. Most seeds germinate best when the soil temperature is between 65°F and 75°F (18°C to 24°C). Once seeds sprout, move them to a bright location or under grow lights. Seedlings need about 14-16 hours of light per day to grow strong stems and leaves.

Watering is critical at this stage. The soil should be kept moist but not soggy. A spray bottle can help you water gently, avoiding the displacement of seeds or damaging fragile seedlings.

5. Harden Off Your Seedlings
Before transplanting them outdoors, seedlings need to be acclimated to their new environment. This process is called “hardening off” and involves gradually exposing your plants to outdoor conditions over a week. Start by placing them outside in a shaded, protected area for a few hours each day, gradually increasing their exposure to sunlight and outdoor temperatures.

6. Transplanting Time
After the last frost date has passed and your seedlings are hardened off, it’s time to transplant them into your garden. Be gentle during the transplanting process to avoid damaging the roots. Plant them at the same depth they were growing in their containers, and water them well to help establish their roots in their new home.

I understand that some of you may live in a place where you can’t have a garden. I highly suggest the YouTube channel below. His ideas are incredible.

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