Spring is upon us – There is no doubt about that. The big question is: Is your garden ready for Spring? Here on the Faulk Farmstead, I am feeling like Spring couldn’t get here quick enough for my liking – However, my garden was requiring a bit of prepping before the warm growing season approached.
My friend Melissa of Faulk Farmstead is guest posting today with some great tips for starting your garden from seed! I love her use of the word farmstead. Is it actually a word? I don’t know but it is very cool! Check it out!
We started the majority of our seeds indoors, using a mixture of organic seed starter and potting soil and 72-cell seedling trays. I found that kitchen tools were extremely helpful for this task – a cookie scoop was used to fill the cells and a pastry tart shaper worked wonders to stamp the soil down.
After all the seeds were in and the soil gently packed in, it was time to water them! They need to be kept moist to encourage germination, so I usually start with an old spray bottle filled with water or my kitchen sprayer nozzle on at barely a trickle. Just enough to keep them damp – a bit like barely wet sand. Be careful not to drown your seeds!
Finally, you need light for those little seeds to start growing! Although our seed trays were positioned near a sunny window, it wasn’t quite enough – What they really needed were grow lights. A nice grow light set-up, however, can be a bit pricey. Utilizing a couple light fixtures from the thrift shop and and combination of grow bulbs and fluorescent bulbs, we were able to create a grow light system that allowed our seedlings to thrive.
Although we won’t be putting our dear little seedlings outside until fear of frost has subsided, we are still working on preparing our outdoor garden for their arrival. Throughout the fall and winter months, we have been using our garden area (sans plants) as a composting location for our cow and chicken manure – pure gold for our soil!
We also utilize a compost pile that takes any scraps that don’t go to the chickens. By the time we were ready to finalize our big garden expansion, all of the manure and compost waste had broken down nicely and was mixed in with the local garden soil that was delivered.
This is our first year with the larger garden and our soil does have a ways to go, but we know that every year the soil will get better and better. I am currently reading an EXCELLENT book about soil preparation, so I am convinced that next year we will be golden.
Hey there, I am Mel! I am a newbie homesteader, along with my husband and kids, living in the beautiful Pacific Northwest. We just finished our first year on our farm – and cannot wait to share all we have been learning! Whether you are looking for DIY projects, traditional recipes, farm life, or just plain fun, the Faulk Farmstead is where you need to be! Follow me on the blog, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, or via my newsletter. Happy homesteading!