Thursday, February 21, 2013

Ladies and Gentlemen...Start Your Peppers!

Alright, it's time to start planting your pepper seeds indoors!  Let's go through some tips for growing peppers from seeds, some of the products you can use, and the varieties that we have here at The Bin.

To start off with, always remember that peppers like it warm and sunny, and this is no exception as a seedling.  Keep that in mind, and follow the steps below to be well on your way to eating tasty peppers all summer long.

1.  Make sure you have the right surroundings for your pepper seeds to start with.  Pick your sunniest window to make a home for them.  If you do not have a sunny window you are going to want to pick up a growing light (different than your regular household lamps and lights).  Another thing that many seasoned pepper planters will tell you to invest in is a seedling heat mat.  These amazing little creations sit below the seed trays to heat those seedlings up and help them grow big and healthy.

2.  Now you want to provide the right environment for the seeds.  You can do this a number of ways.  You can get some plastic seed trays, small plastic pots, Jiffy pellets (circular peat pellets for seedlings), or peat pots.  The best way in insure your peppers sprout is by putting a dome over them to act as a mini greenhouse, keeping all the heat and moisture in.  We have many sizes of domes, trays, pots etc for you to choose from.
Jiffy Seedling Starter Kits-comes with trays, peat plugs and a dome

3. Stay organized!  Make sure that if you are planting more than one type of pepper you either make or purchase some labels or plant tags to put in the soil as you are planting.  Once planted, odds are it is going to be hard to keep the different varieties straight otherwise.

4. Plant away! Pick up some seed starting soil...this is specially designed soil to give young seedlings the ingredients they need to grow strong.   Plant your seedlings according to the directions on the specific variety's package that you purchase.

5.  Stay even!  You want to make sure that your seedlings have a constant and even amount of moisture in the soil.  This means that they soil should never be sopping, and never be dry.  Some people like to use a water spray bottle to help them regulate how much they water the seeds.

6. Take that dome off!  Domes are key to sprouting those little seedlings.  However, once they do sprout you are going to want to take that dome off to prevent them from dampen off.

7. Fertilizing.  There is a nifty product we have that many gardeners swear by called SuperThrive.  This is a mixture of hormones and vitamins that can be added at any point during the growing process.  It comes in a small bottle, and only takes one drop per gallon to tell a noticeable difference in the health of your plants.  If you would like to, you can use a fertilizer rich in nitrogen, but only once the seedlings have produced at least two sets of leaves.  A favorite among some of the staff at The Bin is Age Old Grow Formula (all organic).  However, any Nitrogen rich fertilizer should do the trick.  Once the peppers start to flower, which will most likely happen after they are outside in the ground, you can use a bloom fertilizer like Age Old Bloom.  If you ever get confused about the when, where, what and how of fertilizers stop in or call (303-772-3454) The Flower Bin.  One of our staff members in the Hardgoods department can walk you through exactly what to do.

Corinna is standing next to some of our seed starting supplies and showing off one type of
seed heat mat that we have.
Well, there you have it...some basics on planting your own peppers this season!  Don't be intimidated, it is a simple and fun process, and we are always here to help if you ever have any questions.

Now that you know how to get your seedlings going, take a look at the different varieties and brands that we are carrying.  In addition to the three brands below, we are also expecting Weeks seeds to be arriving soon.  All of the seed varieties highlighted in RED are available as organic.

Botanical Interests:

Lake Valley:

Bounty Beyond Belief:

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