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Back to the basics of seed starting. ~How to start onions from seed~

Hello everyone and welcome back to Wicked Quail and Pork - the blog! Today we are going to talk starting seeds.... which I greatly anticipate every winter, it brings me back to my happy place. The garden brings a certain type of peace and calm to my life that the outside world can't take away. I encourage you to plant a garden this year even if it's just a few pots or a couple of small raised beds, it's good for the soul!


Let's go over how I start seeds and I will give you alternatives in each step. Everything in gardening can be adjusted or done differently with the same outcome.

I got this year's seeds from Botanical Interests. I have been purchasing from them for years and am proud to say that we are now an affiliate. We have always had phenomenal germination rates and they have the prettiest flower seed selection! They also recently added a fantastic rewards program, so be sure to make an account with them before checkout.



Onion Seed Starting Steps


1. Gather the seeds you want to start. Today you guys will be starting Onions with me! I am using "Ailsa Craig Onions" and "Red Wethersfield Onions". These seeds are both from last year's MIgardener order. Another one of my trusted favorites.


2. Wet your soil down! This is one that not a lot of people do but trust me, it helps with the consistency of germination. Don't soak it, but moisten it enough that it's slightly sticky when crushed together in your hand. I do this by putting some soil in a big bowl and spraying it down with the water hose on the sink. Also, make sure you are using a good seed starting soil.



3. Place your pots in your trays. Trays are one of those things that are going to make your life so much easier again, not everyone chooses to use them. As far as pots go, I use the one flat peat pots shown below for my onions. Onions do not mind being planted close together so I like to save space by planting 50 seeds in just one peat pot.


4. Fill your pots with soil. I like to do this in the tote that I keep the dirt in, I also like to tap the pots on the bottom to settle the dirt and then top them off with a little more. I also pat them down flat just slightly.


5. Broadcast your onion seeds on top of the soil. Do NOT make holes for the onions seeds. They are small and do not like to fight to get that first bit of sunlight. Broadcast them on top of your soil close but not on top of each other, be reasonable but don't waste space.


6. Very lightly sprinkle a small amount of soil over the top of the seeds. When I say a small amount I am talking like a couple of tables spoons worth. Just enough to give them some darkness to stay moist. Do not pat the soil down on top of them.



7. Fill the bottom tray that your pots are in about half way with water. This is why that bottom tray is a life saver. Bottom watering is effective and way less work when starting seeds. Just keep an eye on the water level in your tray and make sure your soil isn't too wet that it starts growing mildew.


****Be sure to put your pots and trays under a grow light or somewhere where they will get direct and even lighting so that half of your tray does not get leggy. Start your grow lights just a couple of inches above your pots. We use just regular shop LED lights with great success.



That's it! In 6-8 weeks plant those babies in the ground and watch them grow! Ours will be going out the first week of April. Onion can withstand light frosts and snow, so no need to wait until after your last frost date to plant. If it looks like it might get below 29 degrees out at night, cover them with a light sheet and water them first thing in the morning before the sun has even come up.


Affiliate Amazon link for shop lights- https://amzn.to/3s38b1D


I hope this blog encourages you to start your spring onion seeds! Until next time, happy homesteading!

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