How to Germinate Seeds in Cold Weather

If there's still a possibility of frost or you have a winter crop still in your garden, you can start summer seeds in early spring like this.

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Gather your supplies (& children -- our daughter loves to help in the garden). For planting the seeds, there are many-cell planters, or you can use an old egg carton or berry clamshell..

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Use the best seeds you can find - heirloom seeds, seeds from gardener friends or seed banks, or seeds you've saved from farmer's market fruits and vegetables.

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Fill up your container cells with fresh, moist potting soil.

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Tamp the soil down somewhat with a thumb or tool handle.

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Some seeds tell you at what depth to sow them.

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Otherwise just look at them. You'll want to plant them approximately as deep below the surface as the seeds are big.

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For these tiny parsley seeds, we'll just press them into the surface of the soil. I'm planting these 1-2 per cell.

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These are green bean seeds; we'll need to sow them about 3/8" below the soil surface.

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Use a pen or pencil or something similar to drill little holes.

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Then drop in one seed each.

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Make sure to label what you've planted using something that can survive getting wet.

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For any seeds you've drilled holes for, cover them with a light layer of potting soil.

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Water gently until good and wet.

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Cover with something that will help retain heat and moisture. Place somewhere warm --inside if there's any danger of frost. Sprinkle with water daily, and in about a week you'll see sprouts!

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