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Too Early

May 15th, 2017

My peppers are blooming, they’re still indoors under the grow lights. This year I followed the MOFGA seed starting guide, it recommends seeding peppers on March 21st. That’s a little too early. I’ll be pinching off these blooms, so the plant can put energy towards growth.

Peppers, tomatoes, zinnias, and other heat loving flowering and vegetables don’t do well with cooler temperatures. Most won’t even set fruit at lower temperatures, thus there’s not reason to seed them or try to get them to flower extra early. I’m making a note in my seed starting guide to start peppers when I start tomatoes (April 15th).

Did you start anything too early this year?

5 Comments to “Too Early”
  1. Val on May 15, 2017 at 12:20 pm

    Everything! My tomatoes were like two feet tall and flopping all over the place when I finally got them planted. I did roughly the usual time, but we had a cold snap that prevented me getting them into the ground. It’s always something…

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  2. Megan on May 15, 2017 at 4:28 pm

    I started my peppers and tomatoes too early too. I keep a notebook of the best times for me to start seeds but I moved to a new home and misplaced the notebook. Weather looks like it will be good this week so hopefully I can get them in the ground.

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  3. Sarah on May 15, 2017 at 4:44 pm

    Ditto. I used a different seed starting calendar from the one I have used for years. I’m in Cincinnati. Even though we may not get frost past a certain date, anyone who thinks tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, and other heat-loving veggies can be planted out in early April doesn’t live here. :-)

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  4. Nebraska Dave on May 16, 2017 at 5:47 pm

    Susy, every thing I planted under the grow lights was too early this year. The weather in April when much of the seedlings were to be planted couldn’t be planted. Very wet cold (lower 30s) temperatures at night prevented planting much of anything. As a result they grew monster big out of their pots. I’m just now starting to plant and I hear tonight there’s a chance of severe storms with large hail. (Big sigh) Gardening is always a challenge, isn’t it.

    Now I have cucumbers and squash on the heat mat for planting in three weeks. I like to do that instead of direct seeding to eliminate bare spot spaces because of lack of germination. It promotes 100% space utilization in the garden.

    Have the best day that you can.

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  5. Deb Berning on May 17, 2017 at 10:52 am

    I follow nothing but my gut. I started early stuff 4-10 and tomatoes 4-26. I see no reason to pay for any kind of heat source when it isn’t necessary. I’m 6A, NW Ohio. I save all the money on transplanting into different pots and electric. I use my unheated green house. My tomatoes are doing well. About 3-4″ tall. I find they do much better with less transplant shock when doing them this way. I will put them out in 10-14 days, depending on the weather. Last year they were about 6″ tall and I had a great harvest despite the drought we had. I do not put fans on them or harden off any of my plants. When the weather is right out they go to the garden. I save so much time and money and for 14 yrs. of starting my own plants have found the last few were best. You do have good looking plants. I mulch heavily with leaves gathered every fall. they are chicken bedding and my mulch. The best garden last yr., very few weeds and the moisture stayed longer with 6″ of leaves.

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This is a daily journal of my efforts to cultivate a more simple life, through local eating, gardening and so many other things. We used to live in a small suburban neighborhood Ohio but moved to 153 acres in Liberty, Maine in 2012.

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