How to Start Seeds Indoors

In most northern climates, gardeners have long known the many benefits in starting their own vegetable and flower seeds indoors. It is easy and fun. With this tutorial, you will learn about the joys and feel the pride in growing your own plants from seeds.

Project Difficulty

2/5

What You Will Need

  1. NoDampOff™ Seed Starter
  2. Bucket
  3. Water
  4. Latex Gloves
  5. 48 Cell Flat
  6. Favorite Garden Seeds

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Starting your plants from seeds before the setting your own plants into your garden truly enriches your gardening experience. Many indoor seed starting gardeners use their favorite seeds from their plants from prior years. They choose the exact plant variety they want to grow in their garden, since only the most common flower and vegetable plants are available at garden centers during the spring. Starting seedlings in the late winter allows gardeners to maintain the organic growing conditions that may not exist from commercially-grown plants. You will find that growing your own plants indoors from seed can provide you with a truly unique and enjoyable garden. 

Why Use NoDampOff™the ultimate in seed starting

You can feel the difference from all other seed starters, once to pick up the Mosser Lee’s NoDampOff™bag. NoDampOff™ contains a milled mixture of renewable long fibered sphagnum moss plants, not decomposed peat moss, which is not renewable. NoDampOff™is all natural and organic and has unique water retentive qualities which resists mistakes in over-watering, which is the primary cause of seedling mortality. It encourages healthy root growth, and guarantees the highest seed germination possible. NoDampOff™ produces healthy, vigorous seedlings. Another unique feature is that you can easily adjust or suspend plant growth by controlling the amount of fertilizer you use. This is perfect for climates that may experience late springs or frosts.

How to prepare NoDampOff™ Seed Starter Medium

  1. Hold out about a cup of dry NoDampOff™ . Place the remaining moss in a bucket and slowly pour water into the bucket until the moss becomes completely saturated. Squeeze the water into the moss to make sure it is completely saturated. Hint: While not necessary to germinate your seeds, you may choose to add the recommended amount of liquid soluble fertilizer to the water before wetting the moss. If you decide not to a fertilizer at this time, nutrients will be added at its first or second watering. Remember to wear gloves when handling mosses, plants and soils. 
  2. Lightly squeeze out excess water as you place the moss paste into a flat. The contents of the NoDampOff™bag fills a 48 cell plastic flat or fiber pots which can be obtained at a garden center. 
Fill the flat, sow the seed and place dry NoDampOff over the seeds

3. Fill the flat leaving a 1/4 inch at the top of each cell.

  1. Sow the seeds sparingly on the wet moss and cover with a sprinkling of the saved dry NoDampOff™ to the thickness recommended on the seed package. The dry medium creates a warm cover for your seeds with a moist bed upon which to rest.

Start Seeds

  1. Cover the container with plastic wrap or glass to lessen evaporation and retain heat, and place it in a window with bright but indirect sun light (a north or north-east window is best). Hint: Place toothpicks into the medium to hold the covering away from the seedlings. It should not be necessary to water the moss until after the seeds have germinated. For seeds that have very long germination times, a small amount of water may be necessary only if the moss dries out.
  1. Remove the cover when the seeds start to germinated and before the seedlings come in contact with the cover. Move to your sunniest window. 
  1. When the plants have grown their second set of leaves, transplant into individual containers or set out into your garden. Since NoDampOff™ has very little nutritional value for plant development, it is necessary to fertilize your plants with mild liquid fertilizer such as Schultz, Miracle-Gro, or Peters. 

Watch your Seeds Grow!

NoDampOff™produces healthy root systems
  1. You may transplant from your flat into larger pots or keep in the flat until you are ready to plant the seedlings directly in your garden. 
  1. Plant each seedling in your garden with the moss still attached around the roots as the moss will re-hydrate when you water your garden during the year. Just like in your flat, NoDampOff™ will remain moist until your plants roots tap the moisture.

HINT: If your plants have reached a height to plant in your garden but your garden is not ready, you can “suspend” growth by eliminating the fertilizer from subsequent watering.

Other Planting Mediums

Most other seed starting mediums contain peat, which is decomposed plant material. It is created when plant material dies and compresses under pressure.

Water “ponding” (not sinking in) on top of peat-based seed starter

Peat has long been used by gardeners for a variety of projects. Peat-based seed starters tend to resist water (“ponding” on top of the medium, which can wash away seeds) and dry out very fast, requiring frequent watering. Sphagnum peat is decomposed sphagnum moss, however it does not contain the same high qualities as Mosser Lee’s NoDampOff™and it is not renewable.

Peat moss is not renewable. Once it is dug from the earth, it is gone. Several countries are considering restricting peat harvesting.

Find More Gardening Projects:

We know you’ll find great success using Mosser Lee NoDampOff™ Seed Starting Medium, you may want to try Mosser Lee Sphagnum Moss for Air Layering Trees, or use other Mosser Lee’s Sphagnum Moss Products like the Totem Pole Plant Supports or Mosser Lee Living Wreath.

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