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The first sleep-out

By Penny Stine

I tried to start transitioning my seedlings to life outside the living room last week, but was frustrated by the wind. And the snow.  (scroll down to admire Carol's pics of snow covering her garden boxes.)

So I’ve been trying to get them ready this week. I had all but decided to wait until the weekend of the 14th to plant them in the garden, figuring that an extra week of transition time would be good.

Then someone from out of town called to say they’d like to visit that weekend, which made me realize I didn’t want to forego doing something fun because I had to plant seedlings. After all, I don’t want to be held hostage by my garden or my seedlings – it’s a hobby, not a job.

So I’ve been accelerating the transition phase. They spent their first night outside last night and looked pretty good this morning.

 

 

 

Some of the tomatoes don’t look so good, but I think it’s because I was overwatering them in the house and not because they got scorched by the sun. Most look pretty good, even if they're not as big as ones available at a greenhouse. I tell myself that starting seeds indoors is still worth it because of the unusual varieties I can get from seed catalogs. If I don't get any decent tomatoes this year, I may give up on starting seeds and just resign myself to buying plants. Or buying a grow light. 


Last year, I killed most of my tomatoes during transition because I stuck them in the bright sunshine too soon, so I’ve been trying to be more gradual. I’m thinking that given next week’s forecast of partly cloudy days, it might actually be better to get them in the ground this weekend rather than wait for next. Especially since they’ve been outside for entire days (and nights) this week.
Any thoughts or words of wisdom about transitioning seedlings?
 

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