Tag Archives: seeds

Video – Saving Seeds

End of summer also means end of the cycle. Plants have flowered, fruited and are putting out seeds to ensure their survival. Students returning at the start of the new term should be on the lookout for seed-bearing fruits and dried flower heads.

Week 26 – Starting Tomatoes from Seed

We are currently planting rows of bush beans, zucchini and corn as well as starting tomatoes from seed. We are using a recycled egg carton as our container with one seed being planted in each compartment. Remember to keep the soil moist throughout the entire germination process.
Once the seedling gets two sets of leaves like below we pot-up to a larger 3″ peat pot container. Peat pots can be planted directly in the ground.
Once the seedlings are about 6-8 inches tall we can then transplant them to our garden. Remember to harden-off your seedlings before transplanting. Hardening-off is the process which introduces the seedlings to the outdoors a little at a time. We place the seedlings out side for a day, then bring them in at night. We do that for 2-3 days then allow them to stay out at night 2-3 nights. Once acclimated we can then transplant them to our garden.

Special Seed Offer for Fundraisers

Another special offer from our friends at Botanicalinterests.com
A “Green” Fundraiser

We would like to offer you something VERY unique for your fundraiser program this year: A very unique, high quality line of organic and untreated garden seeds not available in discounting chain stores. Over 500 varieties. No order forms. No catalogs. Prices NOT inflated for fundraisers. Steady stream of income from all year sales.

Our program is simple; your “customers” buy seed from our website and you receive a check for 40% of the sales. This is how it works: we provide you with a website url to advertise to your potential “customers”. This url can be included in an email, a paper newsletter sent home with kids, automated phone messages, or placed on a website.

The success of the program (how much you make) depends on how well and frequently you “get the word out” to your potential customers. Being an all year program, frequent reminders at appropriate times of year (winter, spring, and fall) will encourage repeat visits from customers – and a steady income flow during the year.

Encouraging potential customers to forward your emails or newsletter to friends, relatives, or neighbors makes “door to door” selling unnecessary and opens up the whole country as possible customers!

If you feel having a paper order form might assist you, no problem! We can email you an easy to print form to remind your potential customers to order OR to fill out and give to you to order (email me on suggestions for this procedure if interested).

To get started … simply email me (inform@botanicalinterests.com) the following information: Organization Name (name you want check written to), Contact Name & Phone Number, Mailing Address, City, State, Zip Code, Email Address, Organization Phone Number (if different), and Website url. I will then email you a url which is to be used in correspondence or placed on your website. (If placing on a website, request a graphic to be used on the site).

Our seed really is unique. Check out the website your customers or you would order from at http://www.botanicalinterest.com/homegardeners.html. Check out the product at http://www.botanicalinterest.com/why_product_different.html.
Additionally, any of your customers can email us seed questions at seedquestions@botanicalinterests.com!

For additional information, drop me an email at fundraiser@botanicalinterests.com. Then start getting the word out and let the profits roll in!

Curtis Jones
800-486-2647
fundraiser@botanicalinterests.com

Video – Germinator

A germinator is any device that demonstrates the germination process. The following shows how to make one.

Another germinator can be found here courtesy of RAFT (Resource Area for Teachers, www.raft.net)

Week 5 – Germination

Now that we’ve begun planting our seeds it is time to discuss germination. Germination is the process by which a seed breaks its dormancy, sprouts, and turns into a seedling. The best way to understand it is to observe it up close. In the classroom place some larger seeds like beans, pumpkins, peas or watermelon between layers of wet paper towel on a plate. Make sure the paper towel never dries out. It should feel like a wrung-out sponge. After a few days you will notice the root emerging.

avocado_seed_diagram

 

Video – How to Plant Seeds

Week 4 – Seed Packets, What to Plant

We have amended our beds, laid out rows and are now ready to sow seeds. All pertinent information about planting seeds can be found on the back of the seed packet. This includes: lighting requirements, row spacing, plant spacing, planting depth, plant height, days to germination, and days to harvest.

Note: On the seed packet row spacing refers to traditional row crops. In a raised bed we don’t need space to walk through our rows, so we plant more intensively (closer together).

Also, pay special attention to plant height, remember taller plant go at the north end and smaller plants at the southern end, this way your plant are not shading one another.

If still undecided about what you’re growing please consider the following:
1) Radishes – Perhaps not the tastiest of vegetables but certainly the quickest; seed to harvest is 30 days. Students will feel a sense of accomplishment that far outweighs any nutritional or educational benefit.
2) Lettuce – One of the easiest vegetables one can grow. Stagger your planting (sow seeds Oct, Nov, Dec…) and you’ll have lettuce all year. Also, more importantly, lettuce seed sown now will go to seed within the school year. If you wish to demonstrate the life cycle of a plant, lettuce is perfect (so is Cilantro).
3) Peas and Carrots – Good companion plants in the garden, and in the kitchen. Peas are like nature’s candy and carrots are a thrill to harvest.
4) Fava Beans – Dual benefits, first, they grow well in the fall and can be used in many bean recipes and second, fava bean plants add nitrogen to the soil benefiting the crops that follow it.
5) Swiss Chard – Winner of the most-bang-for-your-buck award. Sow seeds in the fall, harvest only the outer leaves, and you can enjoy Swiss chard the entire year.
6) Anything in the Brassica family – This includes, broccoli, cabbage, kale, etc., which are rich in phytonutrients. For more about phytonutrients, read the following from the USDA

For complete list of what you can plant now see my chart of Vegetable Families and the Digital Gardener’s Southern California Vegetable Planting Schedule.