Thursday, February 23, 2017


Freshly planted seeds
At times, a new home seems to come with a seemingly bottomless list of expenses, one of which is the landscaping. The landscapers were asked (by me) to choose from a list of plants I had created, as long as it fit in the budget (agreed on by my husband). The yard was stunning the day we moved in. (It still is!)

But after the first winter in our house, spring came along with promises of another humid, hot Texas Gulf Coast summer. The winter annuals were not going to be able to handle the upcoming heat.

We asked the landscapers to return and plant summer annuals in their place. Meanwhile, as the summer progressed, I noticed sales in various garden departments and ended up buying potting soil to use in a few pots. With the best of intentions, I also picked up a pile of tiny fiber-board pots that might come in handy this spring it I decide to try my luck at starting seeds.

While digging around in the garage one January day, I noticed one and a half bags of leftover potting soil, plus all the small fiber-board potting containers. It was time to start watching for seeds.

Meanwhile, my husband and I decided we would like to work on the beds this spring, planting the annual color ourselves. The idea of getting fresh air, sunshine, enjoying the yard work, plus saving money, all added up to this year's spring garden plan.

With a few seed packages, I started planting, one tiny pot at a time. Yesterday the first seedling popped through the soil. I was thrilled!!! (This might actually work. Instead of paying a landscaping crew a few hundred dollars for plants and install, we had less than $50 invested.

I planned an efficient method to protect the seeds in the event of frost, heavy rains or wind. With the tiny pots arranged in plastic trays from the garden center, they can be moved under cover in a few seconds. Right now, the pots are on the patio to get sun, but covered with a bird netting to protect them from being attacked and the seeds eaten. (I've only lost one pot before covering them up.)  At night I lift the bird netting, throw a large towel over the seeds to keep critters away, then replace the netting. It seems effective since I have not lost any more pots.

Hoping for 107 little seedlings

Covered with bird
netting to protect the
seeds from critters
One week later, small sprouts

March 11, 2017 update: The seedlings were planted in the ground, fiberboard pots and all. LOVED not having to get rid of a plastic pot as each seedling was planted. With rain and some fertilizer, the plants are growing. It seems there is growth every time I look out the window, even though I know that can not be true. I guess I am just excited this was such a huge money saver by planting seeds instead of buying plants and paying someone else to put them in the ground. Pots, seeds and soil were fairly inexpensive. My time was cost nothing. Good investment in this year's landscape color. 

April 4, 2017 update: It has been almost a month since the tiny seedlings were planted in the flower beds. I discovered my first flowers today. 

Nasturtium plants
Jewel Mixed Colors
Plantation Products

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