Heat source for seed starting

japusFebruary 13, 2013

I've been using crock pots (slow cookers ) for many years as a warming tool for epoxies, etc.
I thought why not try it for warming seed starting areas.The pic has a 4 level stand with grow lights on top.
A seed starting kit, self watering, have lettuce, spinach, kohlrabi, and broccoli in there now.
Under neath I have a smaller size crock pot,full of water, set on low with the lid off, water temp stays at 135 degrees F.
When the rack is closed temps stay at 75 degrees.
This is my very first attempt at starting seeds inside.
I just started these today, hopefully it will work.
Crock pots are great low temperature units, the base does not get overly hot with the cover off.
Now if cover is on that's another story
This is my first attempt at seed starting inside

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digdirt2(6b-7a No.Cent. AR HZ8 Sun-35)

Interesting, and very different approach. :)

Since your shelves are tented (enclosed) you can accomplish a similar result by using an incandescent light fixture inside the tent. A 60 watt bulb puts out a fair amount of heat, a 100 watt bulb even more so in an enclosed area.

Still not a direct-to-the-soil heat source of course but can work.


    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 11:28AM
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I've been using my homemade rice heating pads placed underneath a baking sheet with the seeds on top of that, tented with a plastic cover, but this seems like a much better way to keep consistent heat for a longer period of time! Thanks!

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 1:55PM
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I have two 2foot grow lights hanging above the seed starter.
Last night after I shut the lights off I noticed temps went down to low 60s.
Apparently the lamps give enough heat to raise temperature.
Went back up to mid 70s today after lights were back on.
I need to get a humidistat to check on humidity, I'm thinking it's good with the moisture on the inside walls. I realize everything needs to be opened up when sprouting occurs.
This is all experimentation,. which I enjoy doing.Sometimes I think more than actual gardening.....

    Bookmark   February 14, 2013 at 2:05PM
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Can anyone believe this ?
Not sure if I even do, or maybe it isnt unheard of and I am unaware.
The image here are of the seeds 48 hours after leaving the package

    Bookmark   February 15, 2013 at 10:02PM
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There are some great ideas in this thread! I usually just put my seed starting kit on top of the fridge. It's warm up there and they can't get bumped (I have children and a dog). This year, however, as we have moved into a new house, my cats love to sit on top of the fridge and nock everything down up there. Needless to say I am looking for a new setup this year.

    Bookmark   February 17, 2013 at 3:33AM
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Lights are a good source of heat. Here in Texas when we expect a freeze that could kill some tender plants we wrap a cage around that plant using what ever kind of structure that will surround and cover the plant most wrap this with plastic being sure it does not touch the plant. We place lights inside the structure for the heat source creating a small greenhouse. I am finding uses for those empty plastic milk cartons. By cutting the bottoms our and placing them over plants such as tomatoes as they stop producing as soon as it hits 95 which comes too soon in our area. I have also started to cut a hole in the bottoms of those plastic ice cream containers, leaving a flap which can be closed at night if the temps will drop too low for good growth. I am also thinking about maybe using other small white frosted containers for seed starting here in our area with a hole cut on the bottom for venting during warm days to prevent too much moisture build up. Again Thanks for the wonderful posts on gardenweb.

    Bookmark   February 18, 2013 at 10:27AM
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