PLANT MAGIC: Germination Gripes

As impatient as I am sometimes, it is a mystery, even to myself, that I insist on starting plants from seed. Especially harder starts like rosemary, which can take around 30 days in addition to low germination rates and are therefore easier to start from cuttings if not just buying a whole plant. I seem to just have a habit of making things unnecessarily harder on myself and taking DIY perhaps a bit too seriously.😅

But I think my ego overrides the impatience; I love the feeling of accomplishment and the pride in saying I did this thing all myself (don’t know who I’d be saying it to though, even if we weren’t in a pandemic). I’ve even been looking into how I might build a small raised garden bed myself, although that’s mostly because kits are so damn expensive but the material cost might not actually be cheaper and there’s only so much effort/labor I’m willing to do. 😂

I’ve always struggled with the phrase “work smarter, not harder” because the latter is all I’ve ever known how to do, but with gardening time is of the essence and timing is important. At the same time, if you don’t do things properly and carefully you could make a mistake that forces you to start over and now you’ve lost precious growing time. 

Although I am anxious to see results, I suppose the garden stakes are actually that high for me so I can go through *some* trial and error. Like the skullcap and prairie sage seeds require somewhere from a few weeks to a few months of cold stratification but. I simply cannot wait that long so I’m giving it about a week and I guess we’ll just see what happens. This does, as always, make me regret not starting last year but I simply was not in the right headspace to think about that, as I doubt many were. But every time I think about planting I always wish I’d started earlier, because there’s always something on my grow wishlist that needs a year or more to be established and before it can be harvested. This time it’s valerian, which I haven’t even gotten to germinate yet and I’ve started my 3rd batch of seeds now. It can take up to 21 days, but c’mon! Give me a little sign that the plant magic is at work with those tiny little seeds!!

At least I have plenty of seeds to keep trying though. I only have 10 passion flower seeds and I’ve tried starting 8 of them; even giving my 3rd attempt the 2 day soak in water that’s supposed to help with germination. I’ve gone back and done the same to others as well. Although the weather is still pretty cool I do have a heat mat to keep things warm, but then I have to watch out for mold which can also cause me to have to restart….Why do I do this to myself? 😩 But it’s not like I’m gonna find either of these plants at Home Depot or even a farmer’s market, so I don’t really have much alternative except buying a live plant online which is its own can of worms.

Now I did actually buy a rosemary plant one year, and I killed it all the same. So there you have it. C’est la vie. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯


BUT ALSO that same year I think, I bought other plants from my local farmers’ markets as well and sometime after transplanting to a bigger pot I found myself with a slug and her eggs in one of the plants. I only noticed the eggs after I’d relocated the slug outside and what a disaster that would have been! You can’t completely avoid pests growing indoors sometimes, but that definitely isn’t one you would develop normally. So might as well go for broke and raise the plants myself from start to finish; at least if they die I know it was only my fault. 🙃

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