Planting seeds in a garden

How to Plant Seeds

What you’ll need:

  • String

  • Garden stakes
  • Hoe
  • Seeds
  • Garden marker

Step 1:

Read the planting information — recommended planting time, depth, and spacing — on the back of seed packets. Use this valuable information to lay out your garden, ensuring mature plants have adequate space.

Step 2:

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Place a string line where you would like to make a garden row. Make a string line by tying each end of the string to a garden stake. Use the hoe to create a furrow along the line.

Step 3:

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Drop seeds in the furrow, spacing them as directed on the seed packet. Gently cover the seeds with soil. Label the row with an identifying marker.

Add Mulch

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Organic mulch, such as shredded bark or grass clippings, is an easy way to suppress weeds. Most weed seeds need light o germinate. A 2-inch layer of mulch fights weeds by blocking light, preventing germination. Spread mulch over the garden after seedlings emerge and when planting transplants. Prevent disease by maintaining a 2- to 3-inch mulch-free ring around the base of plants. Moist mulch in contact with stems creates a portal for fungi and bacteria to enter the plant. At the end of the season, use a spade to mix mulch into the top 8 inches of soil. The mulch will decompose and add nutrients to the soil.

Water Smart

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Edible plants thrive when they are provided about 1 inch of water per week. When it doesn’t rain, make the most of every drop with efficient watering practices. Water deeply. Your goal is to send moisture 6–8 inches into the soil to encourage greatest root growth. Cover soil with a 2- to 3-inch layer of mulch to reduce soil moisture evaporation. Be vigilant about eliminating weeds.

Watch for Pests

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Good news — pest control is rarely necessary in an edible garden! Staff at your local garden center can help, too. Most often the pest will depart the garden in short order, leaving only cosmetic damage behind. If damage is ongoing and significant, control the pest with the least toxic method available.

Learn more about identifying and controlling pests.

  • By Megan McConnell Hughes

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When you’re eager to get gardening, it can be tempting to start sowing seeds as soon as the seed packets appear in garden stores. But correct timing of both indoor seed sowing and outdoor seeding and transplanting is a crucial part of growing healthy plants. Start seeds too early indoors and your seedlings may be leggy and potbound by the time outdoor planting time arrives; too late and your harvest will be delayed. Plant warmth-loving seeds or transplants outside too early and cold soil and air temperatures may harm them. On the other hand, crops that do best in cooler weather may not thrive if they are planted late and end up maturing when the weather is hot.

Fortunately, it’s not hard to come up with a seed starting schedule that is appropriate for your area and the crops you plan to grow. Figuring out what to plant when, both for seeds started early indoors and those planted directly in the garden, starts with finding out the average date of the last spring frost in your area. Then you can arrive at the number of weeks before or after this date to sow seeds of each particular kind of plant for the greatest likelihood of success.

If you are starting seeds early indoors to produce transplants to go out in the garden, your goal is to have transplants reach the best size for transplanting at a time when the weather conditions are suitable for them to go outside. Timing is also important for seeds planted directly in the garden. Cold-tolerant spinach seeds can be planted as soon as the soil is dry enough to work in the spring, while warmth-loving pumpkin seeds should go in the ground two weeks after the last frost date.

Thankfully, the timing (relative to the last spring frost date) for sowing seeds of vegetables and herbs both early indoors and directly in the garden has been worked out for you by generations of previous gardeners. Check out Seed Starting Tables 1 and 2 (below) for information on some popular vegetable and herbs. Check gardening books and online resources for more comprehensive information.

Table 1: Indoor Seed Starting and Transplanting Table

Type of plant

Number of weeks before last spring frost date to start seeds indoor

Earliest date to transplant hardened off seedlings outside relative to last spring frost date

Basil

1 week after

Broccoli

2 weeks before

Cabbage

4 weeks before

Cauliflower

2 weeks before

Cucumber

1-2 weeks after

Eggplant

2-3 weeks after

Kale

4 weeks before

Lettuce

3-4 weeks before

Melon

2 weeks after

Onion

4 weeks before

Parsley

2-3 weeks before

Pepper

2 weeks after

Pumpkin

2 weeks after

Squash

2 weeks after

Swiss Chard

2 weeks before

Tomato

1 week after

Table 2: Outdoor Direct Seeding Table

Type of plant

Earliest date to direct sow seeds relative to last spring frost date

Beans

On last frost date

Basil*

1 week after

Beets

2-4 weeks before

Carrots

2-3 weeks before

Cilantro

1-2 weeks before

Corn

On last frost date to 1 week after

Cucumber*

1-2 weeks after

Dill

1-2 weeks before

Lettuce*

3-4 weeks before

Melon*

2 weeks after

Peas

6 weeks before

Pumpkin*

2 weeks after

Radish

4-6 weeks before

Spinach

4-6 weeks before

Swiss Chard*

1-2 weeks before

Squash

2 weeks after

*may also be started early indoors; see Table 1

All Gardening is Local
The specific seeding, transplanting, and direct-seeding dates to follow in your garden will depend on where in the country you are. It will come as no surprise that the last spring frost date in Texas comes quite a bit earlier in the year than in Vermont! And in the warmest parts of the country, you may be able to grow some crops outdoors year-round. Your best source of information targeted to the growing conditions in your area is your state Cooperative Extension Service. Many of the state Extension Service websites have seed starting calendars that make it easy to come up with a seed starting and planting schedule for your classroom and garden. The local office of your state Cooperative Extension Service or local Master Gardener program can also help you determine the average last spring frost date (and first fall frost date) for your area.

Make a Seed Starting and Planting Calendar
Making a vegetable and herb seed starting and planting calendar is a fun winter classroom project. It lets you and your students map out in an easy to use visual format when to start seeds of various crops inside to grow into transplants; when to transplant those seedlings outside; and when to plant seeds directly in the ground.

Step 1: Find Your Average Last Spring Frost Date
To get started, find out the average date of the last spring frost in your area. To find this date, consult local experienced gardeners, your local Extension Service or Master Gardener Program, or the National Climatic Data Center freeze/frost information.

Step 2: Make a Seed List
Next make a list of the seeds you plan to start for your garden. Divide the list into two categories: seeds that will be started early indoors to produce seedlings to transplant to the garden and seeds that will be sown directly in the outdoor garden. To figure out which category to place your seeds in, refer to Table 1 (above).

Step 3: Figure out Indoor Seed Sowing and Transplanting Dates
For the seeds you’ll be starting early indoors, find and note the number of weeks prior to the last frost date in your area to start seeds.Table 1 (above) gives you this information for the most commonly grown vegetables and herbs. For plants that are not on this list, check the seed packet, seed catalog, or gardening references for this information. Then translate the weeks before frost date information into the specific dates for your area.

Next, use Table 1 (above) to find out when to move hardened off transplants to the outdoor garden, relative to the last frost date. Some cold tolerant seedlings, such as cabbage and broccoli, can be transplanted before the last frost date, but you should wait until a week or two after your last frost date to transplant warmth lovers like tomatoes and peppers.

It’s important to note that these seed starting and transplanting dates (and those for direct-seeded crops below) are approximate and based on average weather and soil conditions. Use your judgment to modify them (especially transplanting dates) given the actual weather and soil conditions in a particular season. Also note that these dates tell you when you can safely start planting. Some quick-maturing crops, like lettuce, can continue to be planted every few weeks in succession for an extended harvest. And many cold-tolerant crops can be planted from mid-summer through early fall, depending on the crop and your climate, for a fall harvest.

Step 4: Figure out Outdoor Direct Seeding Dates
Some crops don’t transplant easily and they do best if their seeds are sown directly in the garden where they are to grow. These crops include beans, beets, carrots, sweet corn, peas, radishes, and spinach.

Cucumbers, melons, squash, and pumpkin plants also do not transplant readily. They can be started early indoors if the seeds are sown in plantable, biodegradable pots, such as peat pots, so that their roots are not disturbed when they are transplanted. Starting seeds of these crops early indoors may be helpful if you garden in a part of the country with a very short growing season. But in general these crops will do best if they are grown from seeds planted directly in the garden.

Some direct-seeded crops are very cold tolerant and can be planted before the last frost date. For example, spinach seeds can go in the ground as soon as the soil is dry enough to work in. Other seeds, like those of squash and pumpkins, need to be planted when the soil is warm and all danger of frost is past, usually a week or two after the last frost date. Table 2 (above) gives you the timing relative to the last frost date to direct sow seeds in the garden. As you did before, translate the weeks before or after the last frost date into the specific dates for your area.

Step 5: Put All Your Information in a Chart
Now comes the fun part! On a large piece of poster board, draw a table that lists date and the number of weeks before and after last frost for these date in your area the across the top, and the names of the vegetables and herbs you plan to grow in a column on the left hand side. Then using the information you’ve put together, block out the appropriate times for sowing seeds indoors, transplanting, and/or direct seeding for each crop, using different color blocks for each category.

Once your chart is made, it’s easy to keep track of when to start planting seeds both indoors and out, and when it’s time to move your seedlings to the big world of the outdoor garden. Happy planting!

Growing Herbs, Vegetables & Flowering Annuals from Seed

Growing from seed is fun and rewarding as well as being very cost effective. You can access a much broader variety of plants than those that are generally available as seedlings in nurseries. Commercial growers simply cannot afford to produce small volumes of a wide range plants profitably and so concentrate on the mass production of familiar and ‘safe’ options. So if you want to grow heritage plants or rare and unusual varieties, particularly of vegetables, then you need to grow from seed. Nowadays it is relatively easy to obtain high quality seeds through nurseries or direct from seed companies through mail order. (Note that there are quarantine restrictions on seed coming into Australia from overseas).

Seed Provenance
One thing to consider when ordering seeds online is to identify the provenance or original source of those seeds. If say, you are purchasing seeds from a seed company in Queensland who produce their own seed, then potentially those seeds will have performed well in that environment. But will they necessarily perform as well in say, the foothills of the Victorian Alps? As a rule of thumb you should try to source seed from an area as close to your own growing conditions as possible. Some seed companies source seed from other growers so, if in doubt, check with the seed company.

An excellent way to source locally produced seed is to become part of the Seed Savers Network. This is an organisation that encourages members to grow, preserve, collect and exchange seed with other gardeners in the same area. For further information on the Seed Savers Network visit www.seedsavers.net

Seed Viability
When you are purchasing seed it is important to check the Use By date on the seed pack. Do not be tempted to buy cheap out-of-date seeds. Some of this older seed may germinate but it will probably give a disappointing result and the plants produced will be weak and not very good performers. Seed viability (its capacity to grow and develop) can be variable and, whilst some seed will germinate after being stored for hundreds of years, most seed will only last a season or two. In my experience, the smaller the seed the shorter its period of viability, so obtaining fresh seed is critical for a successful outcome.

A good reference for this is the ‘Seedsaver’s Handbook’, by Michel & Jude Fanton, the founders of the Australian Seedsavers Network. It lists the viability of many edible plants as well as describing in great detail how you can save your own seed. Importantly it also teaches you how to preserve true-to-type varieties by avoiding cross pollination with different varieties of the same plant. Eg many plants in the cucurbit family (pumpkin, zucchini, marrow, cucumber, melons etc) must be prevented from cross pollinating with close varieties of their type. For example Pumpkin X will cross with a closely planted Pumpkin Y but their seeds will produce hybrids that may lack the desirable characteristics of either one or both of the parent plans.

A simple way to avoid this cross pollination is to only plant and grow one named variety of that plant each season. And check what your neighbour is growing on the other side of the garden fence as well.

Germination Rate
Some seed companies put a Germination Rate (GR) on the seed packet eg GR-85%. This means that for every 100 seeds, on average 85 will grow successfully. Seed packets generally contain a generous amount of seed, ample for any home gardener so the germination rate is probably not critical. But to avoid disappointment, it is a good idea to sow more than you want. For example, when sowing peas or beans you can put two seeds in every hole at the designated spacing. When the plants are about 15cm high, you can choose to remove the weaker of the plants where both seeds have germinated successfully. In other spots, only one seed may have germinated but the second seed will ensure that you won’t have any frustrating gaps.

Don’t give up on seeds too quickly. Most seeds start to pop up above soil level between 5 and 21 days after planting. But some seeds can take considerably longer so check the seed packet for accurate information.

Direct Sowing

Whilst it can be advantageous to sow seed in seed trays, in order to control heat and water requirements for germination, some seed is best sown directly in garden beds. For example, legumes (peas and beans) as well as root vegetables do not transplant well and should always be sown where they are to grow.

One way to get around this is to use biodegradable pots eg toilet roll inserts, egg cartons or rolled up envelopes and sow individual seeds in these. Once conditions are right and the emergent seedlings are strong enough, soak the ‘pots’ well in water and then plant out in the garden. This method avoids disturbing the plant roots which is the reason so many seedlings fail at the transplant stage.

An early crop of summer beans, whether bush or climbing, can be produced by sowing seeds this way in a greenhouse, with the extra warmth tricking the seed into germinating. Once the seeds have germinated, they will grow on even when planted into cold weather.

Pre-Soaking of Seeds

One way to hasten germination, and also to see whether some particular seed is viable, is to pre-soak the seeds. Some sources recommend soaking seeds in water for a couple of hours before planting. Others recommend overnight soaking or even for a couple of days. In my experience, when germinating all types of beans, peas and zucchini (large seeds) seeds, soaking them in water or on moist kitchen paper for several days before planting is beneficial. For an extra ‘kick-along’ place the soaking seeds inside a clear sealed container and place on a warm windowsill. This will ensure that the germinating seedlings are supplied with moisture, light and heat.

Check seeds daily to make sure they are evenly moist and in case of any developing mould. If mould appears, wash seeds gently and returning seeds to the container with new, clean and moist paper will usually avert ongoing problems.

This method can also work well with carrot seed. Soak in tepid water for at least 2 days, changing water daily. Planting seed with a wooden skewer (a dibbler) can help – wet seed is difficult to place!

If any seeds fail to germinate when most others have, then they are not planted.

Planting Depth

When planting seeds they should be planted at a depth double their own size. Fine seed should be sprinkled lightly on the soil, or on the surface of the seedling mix, before a fine layer of soil or seed raising mix is cast across them. A sieve is handy to ensure no large soil particles inhibit germination of fine seed.

Mulch

Do not mulch newly sown seeds as weak seedlings may not be able to penetrate the mulch layer. In some cases a ‘scatter mulch’, eg fine straw, can be used to help retain soil surface moisture. A down side with any mulch is that it provides shelter for pests such as earwigs and millipedes that can decimate emerging seedlings over night.

Protection of Young Seedlings

As well as earwigs and millipedes, slugs and snails love tender young seedlings. To deter snails and slugs you could try sprinkling coffee grounds, collected from your friendly neighbourhood barista, around your seedlings. Or spread dried and crushed egg shells in the garden bed. Beer traps are reputedly delighted to drink themselves to death in beer traps. Or you could use environmentally friendly iron-based snail bait.

Recycled plastic milk or soft drink bottles can be used as guards for emerging seedlings. Earwigs are trickier – try enticing them with squeezed grapefruit halves as little houses that they will harbour in. They also like to hide in crushed newspaper drizzled with fishy oil, stuffed inside plastic plant pots. Empty the ‘traps daily’ by disposing of the contents in a manner of your choosing!

Conditions for Germination

Seeds will generally germinate in response to a combination of natural stimuli. The most critical of these are moisture and temperature.
Moisture is generally easy for the home gardener to control with regular gentle watering (fine mist) and by choosing a free draining growing medium (in a seed tray or a garden bed) so that the seed does not become flooded. A simple soft-watering device can be made by using a heated metal skewer to poke holes in a soft drink bottle lid or a fine mist spray bottle.

Overwatering or water logged soil may lead to ‘damping off’, a fungal condition that leads to the collapse of young seedlings. Overcrowding of seedlings may also be a contributing factor, as can bad equipment hygiene. Always clean and sterilise containers before using, and always use fresh potting media (not recycled).

Temperature is a little harder to manage if you are not a commercial grower. The seeds of summer plants need night temperatures to be above 15°c for successful germination. A heat bed may be used to get summer seeds to germinate or they can be kept inside in a warm position until they have germinated. Other useful places to access heat are on top of an outdoor hot water system.

Winter vegetable seeds need night temperatures below 15°c to germinate. A prolonged summer will make it difficult to obtain these cold temperatures so any brief ‘cold snap’ should be taken advantage of. Once the germination process has started, a slight raise in temperature will not affect the plants growth.

Germination Period

Seeds generally germinate somewhere between 7 and 21 days after sowing. During this period it is important to keep the soil moist but not wet. If the soil dries out then the seeds will probably fail to germinate. The first two leaves of the seedling that appear are not ‘true’ leaves but are called cotyledons. They are most often different in appearance from the subsequent ‘true’ leaves. When the true leaves appear it is an indication that the seed has successfully germinated and post embryonic growth has commenced. If the true leaves take too long to appear the seed may become exhausted and fail to progress so it is vital to maintain the optimum germination conditions until this critical stage has passed.

Transplanting Seedlings

If the seeds are sown in seed trays, they should be transplanted when they are approximately 15cm in height when they should be able to resist transplant shock. Be careful not to damage the fragile roots when transplanting as this may cause the seedling to fail. Space or thin out seedlings to the appropriate distance as suggested on the packet so that they have ample room to grow. Water in gently after transplanting with a diluted seaweed emulsion. As they grow continue to provide regular water and a liquid fertiliser as per the seedlings’ needs.

Mail Order Seed Companies

Mail Order Seed Companies that supply heritage, open-pollinated or non-hybrid seeds are listed below. Some seeds may be treated with a fungicide so please read the description carefully, or contact the seed companies directly, if you are looking for untreated and organic seeds.

Many new plant cultivars that have been developed over the past decade may be subject to Plant Breeders Rights (PBR). PBR is effectively a plant patent. You may propagate these plants for your own use but NOT for resale unless you pay a royalty to the PBR holder. If in doubt, check the original plant label or seed packet or look for the PBR symbol.

Nine tips for seed sowing success

Sowing seeds is an exciting and rewarding process, with endless seeds to try your hand at.

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Give your seeds the right amount of heat, light and moisture, and they will germinate successfully. But there are some important rules to remember, which, when you get used to sowing seeds, will become second nature. They include good hygiene, using fresh seed and compost, and good soil preparation.

Before you get going, check out our guides to sowing small seeds and sowing large seeds, as the methods for both can vary.

Fancy growing your own cut flowers? Take a look at our advice on growing cut flowers from seed.

Follow these key tips for seed sowing success.

Don’t use garden soil – it’s too variable and full of unwelcome organisms.
1

Practise good hygiene

If sowing under cover, always use very clean pots and trays and a new bag of good seed compost. Don’t use garden soil – it’s too variable and full of unwelcome organisms.

Adding new compost to a clean tray of seed pots 2

Sow fresh seed

For the best, fastest results, sow fresh seeds. Ideally, start each year with new packs of seed. Don’t discard part-used ones – reseal with tape, then store in a cool, dry place. Seeds are viable for different amounts of time – check our seed viability guide.

Packets of tomato seeds 3

Prepare the soil

If sowing outdoors, break down the soil with a fork before raking lightly to create a good seedbed. Don’t over-rake it, as that can cause the soil to ‘cake’ in the first shower of rain. If the soil is wet and/or heavy, cover the seeds with sand or vermiculite instead of soil.

Preparing a seedbed with a rake 4

Follow the instructions on the packet

Always follow the instructions on the packet regarding timing, temperature, light levels and sowing depth. Don’t be tempted to oversow.

Sowing seeds in a prepared tray 5

Label pots and seed trays

Even though you think you’ll remember what you’ve sown and where, it’s easy to forget. Be sure to label pots, seed trays and rows in the soil as soon as you’ve sown them.

Writing a label for planted seeds 6

Water newly sown seeds

Always water-in newly sown seeds, as they need plenty of moisture in order to swell up and start to grow. However, water carefully after that, so they neither dry out or are so wet that they damp off or rot. It’s a careful balance, so check seeds daily at this stage.

Watering-in a tray of newly sowed seeds 7

Cover to hold in moisture

Cover seed trays with a clear plastic lid (or plastic film) to hold in moisture. Once the seeds have germinated, remove the lid. This will ensure good ventilation and will help prevent damping off disease.

Placing a propagator lid over pots of germinating seedlings standing in a tray 8

Protect your seeds

Protect your sown seeds from cats, squirrels and mice with wire netting or mesh and protect seedlings from slugs and snails.

Advertisement Adding beer to a slug trap 9

Pricking out

Prick out and transplant individual seedlings as they germinate, rather than waiting for the whole batch to be ready as germination can be erratic.

Pricking out seedlings

Sowing Seeds in the Ground

Many annuals, wildflowers, and vegetables can be seeded directly in the garden, either broadcast over a bed to give a planted-by-nature look or sown in the traditional rows of a vegetable or cutting garden.

Many other plants, however, are best raised from seed sown in containers. These include slow-growing perennials, plants with expensive or very fine seed, and warm-season vegetables and annuals that you want to start when the garden soil is still too cold and wet for in-ground planting.

Flowers and vegetables to direct-sow

Certain easy-to-grow plants do best when sown directly in the garden, because they have delicate root systems or taproots that make successful transplantation from containers difficult.

Such plants include:

Whether you’re sowing a wildflower mixture or several kinds of annuals for a showy border, start by preparing the soil. Remove weeds, then loosen the soil and work in amendments with a spading fork, shovel, or rototiller.

Add a complete fertilizer in the amount directed on the label. Finally, smooth the soil with a rake.

If rain doesn’t do the job for you, moisten the bed thoroughly a few days before you intend to plant. At sowing time, the soil should be moist but not soggy.

How to plant in rows

To grow vegetables or annuals in rows, prepare the soil (see video), but do not dig in fertilizer; it will be applied later.

Next, make furrows for the seeds, following the packet instructions for depth of furrows and spacing between them. If possible, lay out the rows in a north-south direction, so that both sides will receive an equal amount of sunlight during the day.

Form the furrows with a hoe, rake, or stick; for perfectly straight rows, use a board or taut string as a guide, as shown at right. Now dig two furrows alongside each seed furrow–one on either side, each 2 inches away from and 1 inch deeper than the seed furrow.

Apply fertilizer in these furrows, following label recommendations for amount of fertilizer per foot of row. This technique puts the fertilizer where plant roots can best use it.

Sow seeds evenly, spacing them as the packet directs. You can tear off a small corner of the packet and tap the seeds out as you move along, or pour a small quantity of seed into your palm and scatter pinches of seed as evenly as possible. Larger seeds, such as beans, can be placed individually by hand.

Water the furrows with a fine spray; then keep the soil surface moist but not dripping wet until the seeds sprout. Thin overcrowded seedlings while they’re still small; if you wait too long to thin, the plants will develop poorly, and you’ll have a harder time removing an individual plant without disturbing those around it.

Buying, storing, and broadcasting seeds

Be sure the seeds you buy are fresh; they should be dated for the current year. For many plants, seed may be sold in three different forms: loose, pelletized, and in tapes. Loose seeds, traditionally sold in packets, are familiar to all gardeners. Pelletized seeds, also sold in packets, are individually coated (like small pills) to make handling and proper spacing easier. Seed tapes are strips of biodegradable paper with seeds embedded in them, properly spaced for growing to maturity. You just unroll the tape in a prepared furrow and cover it with soil.

Store extra seeds in an airtight jar or other container in a cool, dry place. With proper storage, many kinds of seeds remain viable for a year, and some stay good for several years.

Broadcasting seeds in a prepared bed

1. For a patterned planting, outline the areas for each kind of seed with gypsum, flour, or stakes and string. You may want to put a label in each area.

2. To achieve a more even distribution, shake each kind of seed (or an entire wildflower seed mixture) in a covered can with several times its bulk of white sand.

3. Scatter the seed-sand mixture as evenly as possible over the bed or individual planting areas; then rake lightly, barely covering the seeds with soil. Take care not to bury them too deeply.

4. Spread a very thin layer of mulch (such as sifted compost) over the bed to help retain moisture, keep the surface from crusting, and hide the seeds from birds.

5. Water with a fine spray. Keep the soil surface barely damp until the seeds sprout; once seedlings are up, gradually decrease watering frequency.

6. When seedlings have two sets of true leaves, thin those that are too closely spaced. Transplant the thinned seedlings to fill empty spaces in the bed.

Next: Caring for your vegetables

What is sowing seeds?

Question: What is sowing seeds?

Answer: To sow a seed simply means to plant it. The word of God uses this as a metaphor to describe the concept of working to achieve something positive. The Bible often uses symbolism associated with agricultural production because it was such an important part of ancient people’s daily life, unlike the majority of people today.

In one of Jesus’ parables he uses the analogy of someone sowing seeds, and what can happen to the seeds afterwards, to teach about the different responses people will have regarding the gospel message (Luke 8:5 – 15).

Seed time, in relation to firstfruits, refers to the time when the environment, temperature and season are appropriate for the placing of seeds in the ground for their best success of growing.

Growing up on a farm we spoke of seedtime as the time when the earth was warm enough and moist enough from the early spring rains to best guarantee the “sprouting” of the seed once it was placed in the ground. Otherwise, it would simply lie buried in the soil and die.

Voltaire Planting Trees Jean Huber, 1750 – 75

Springtime is the time of seeds. It is the time when life springs forth from the earth. We could associate “seed time” with the time of planting (Isaiah 60:21, 61:3).

Spiritually, we could say that when God places his Holy Spirit in us at the time of our repentance and baptism, it is a spiritual seed, the “beginning” of spiritual life within us. However, we can’t let that “seed” just sit there and not grow, or it will die. We must water the “seed” of the Holy Spirit with continued bible study and prayer. We must put into practice every word of the teachings of the entire Bible to allow the Holy Spirit to grow in us.

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