Spring indoors

humid trays

It may be grey and dreary outside, but Spring is popping up inside the house. About 3 weeks ago, I started a new flat of flower seeds and warm weather vegetables. Encased in plastic wrap to keep them evenly moist, they sit on top of a heating pad so the soil temperatures can get above 70 degrees. And who is that peeking out behind the tray? The eggplants have germinated!

eggplant seedling

Last year was my first year growing eggplants, and because of my small garden I chose a good container variety, the fairy-tale eggplant. What I didn’t realize is that eggplant seeds take a long time to germinate, and require really warm soil, comparatively. I even gave up on last year’s seeds after 2 months of no action: I turned the soil and sowed tomatoes in the same containers. Lo and behold, seedlings of both plants came up in another week’s time! Once I managed to extricate them from each other, the plants went on to produce beautifully, and I loved seeing the lavender-striped fruits hanging on the trellis.

I’ve made space in the flats under the grow lights by giving some other seedlings larger containers. Upstairs, under my sunniest window, are the nigella, dill, painted daisies and artichokes.

Left to right: nigella, artichokes, dill, painted daisies
Left to right: nigella, artichokes, dill, painted daisies

I am thoroughly enamored with the the artichokes – they look so leafy and primal, especially when compared to the rest of the bunch.

Finally, the real heroes of the day are the Spicy Globe Basil seedlings. Saved from last year’s plants by yours truly (what satisfaction!) they have doubled in size in the past week.

spicy globe basil

I’ve begun to save this pot for last during my morning seedling rounds. It looks so cheerful there on the window sill, I can’t help but believe that I’ll soon be strumming my guitar on the porch, wearing flip-flops, and smelling basil on the warm breeze.

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