My Aha Moment

Guys, I had an “aha moment” the other day. Spring in the Midwest always means one thing: Severe Thunderstorms. We’re right smack dab in tornado alley. So, more often than not, we get a lot of strong winds.

I had just planted my little lettuce and chard seedlings in my newfangled raised garden bed (post about that coming soon!). So I was a worried garden momma. I didn’t want my poor little seedlings to get pummeled in the wind and rain. Not after all that hard work!

So I looked for any way I could find to shield them from the elements. I tried pinning a woven tarp to the gutters of my greenhouse and let them drape over the side of the raised bed. That didn’t work, the tarp just blew into the bed itself. So I stuck some sticks into the dirt to help keep it propped off of the bed. Still didn’t work.

So I looked in the greenhouse to see what would possibly work, and it was staring me right in the face! My terra cotta pots! I had several of them just stacked up in the corner unused.

So I flipped those little suckers upside down and placed them over my seedlings. I made sure that the hole wasn’t directly over my seedling, so that the rain could still get through the hole and water the dirt around the seedling itself.

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AND, the pots were heavy enough that I wouldn’t have to worry about them blowing off in the wind. I was short a couple small pots so I ran to Wally World and bought three more small ones for $ .77 a piece. Can’t beat that kind of price!

I sure hope my aha moment helps you all out this wet and rainy spring season!

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My “Germination Station”

Let me show you how I started my seedlings this year!

I had some luck germinating my lettuce seedlings in the greenhouse itself. But once the lettuce got bigger, I had to keep the greenhouse cooler so they wouldn’t wilt, so that wasn’t conducive to quickly germinating seedlings.

So I put together my little “Germination Station”. It’s so easy, and I bet you already have all the supplies you need!

If you are an avid gardener like myself, and love growing things by seed, then I’m sure you have a few of these laying around gathering dust:

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Well bust those bad boys out! And those Christmas lights you just put in the closet a couple months ago? Grab a strand, because that’s really all you need to get started!

Step 1: Flip a lid (you’ll need 2) over and wind a strand of Christmas lights all inside the lid, leaving the tail with the plug in out.

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Step 2: Nest the bottom tray inside of the lid. This is where you will put your cell packs.

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Step 3: Put the other clear lid on top of your bottom black tray and plug in your lights. Simple as that!

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Here is a few pictures I snapped as I was germinating some seedlings about a month ago:

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It gets downright tropical in there!IMG_0419.JPG                          If you look really closely, you can see my little Coleus seedlings!

If you have concerns with the heat given off by the Christmas lights, I have had no problems. I’m paranoid about fire hazards myself, and I felt the bottom of the lid that contained the lights, and while it was warm, it was never hot to the touch. I have had it on nonstop for days at a time, and at no point did the lights get close to melting into the plastic.

Have you tried something similar? Let me know!

Thanks for reading!

– Lindsay