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WSing in the South?

Posted by jimmac619 8 (My Page) on
Thu, Jan 24, 13 at 11:55

I'm in the process of trying this process for the first time, and on a pretty big scale. (Newly retired, bitten badly by the gardening bug again now that I have the time to devote to it.

Anyway, it struck me that most of the info I had read on WSing came from points well north of SE Alabama. Any other Southern gardeners trying this? I'll love to hear about your mistakes before I make them. ;-)

Roll Tide!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: WSing in the South?

Good luck and welcome. No advice from this yankee since I have no experience with your climate. I'm sure some of the others who are near you will chime in soon.

Caryl


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RE: WSing in the South?

I'm new to this also. I started eagerly sowing away without realizing it might be too soon for some of the tender things. The weather was so warm that my beans sprouted quickly. One type zoomed right up & hit the top of the gallon vinegar jug it was planted in. So, I had to prepare a bed & plant out. Since then we've had some freezing nights & I had to cover the bed with plastic, but they seem to be doing fine. Things that I started when the weather was cooler haven't sprouted yet.

I've mostly used seed starting mix, because I got a good deal on last year's from Lowes. I only used potting mix for a few things.


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RE: WSing in the South?

I have not been on this forum in a few years - started winter sowing in 2004 and have had wonderful, wonderful luck in North Carolina. I really don't worry about not having snow, if I were to do perennials, our cold nights have worked well with stratifying the seeds. I no longer do perennials, as my gardens are loaded with them (costing me nothing) and now I mainly do profusion zinnias and melampodiums for borders.

Wintersowing has been the most wonderful experience and my gardens look wonderful as a result. Haven't posted in years, but saw that you were worried and there is no need. It works, believe me

Carrie


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RE: WSing in the South?

Ah, encouragement! Sounds like we're not wasting our time. We've just planted winged wildlife attracters so far (mostly perennials) and we're past 20 containers so far. Many more planned.

I worry more about the unusually warm nights more that the cold ones. We've been having a lot of those.


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RE: WSing in the South?

Hi, my WSing last year taught me a couple things. I'm in Oklahoma.

1) Don't sow quick germinators till late in season. Mostly annuals germinate fast. Start with perennials.

2) Don't set containers on the ground. Rolly Polly's and snails get in.

3) Start the containers in the shade.

Being a rookie, I sowed everything in Jan. A couple of warm jan days and I had things coming up like crazy. I have to admit it didn't really hurt the seedlings though. We had a big year for caterpillars, so bugs got a lot of my seedlings. I need a plan for caterpillars this year


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RE: WSing in the South?

Well, two out of three for us. We planted some reseeding annuals too. Ours are on a small deck that never gets direct sun. So far the dogs haven't decided that we put all that stuff out there for them to play with. We're holding our breaths on that one.


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RE: WSing in the South?

LOL, Jimma. My dogs think the plants in jugs are for their entertainment - I've rescued a few clumps from the yard once I realized that i was missing containers late last summer (I was keeping a few new perennials in containers for their first year rather than planting out). Now the jugs are on my patio table and will move to the fenced garden once the yard is a little drier.

Caryl


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RE: WSing in the South?

Jimma,
I am a newbie for everything. The only thing I have ever grown is Moon Flowers and that was a few years ago. I am attempting WSing to help my brother get a good start on his first garden since moving from New Orleans. I am sowing all veggies this time. I am located near Fort Benning GA. I also have a few seeds set, in containers on top of my fridge.
Good luck to you,
Missy


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RE: WSing in the South?

Hey, Jimma, Roll Tide indeed - what a great season! I'm a good bit north of you (Huntsville area), so we are still having cold nights here. I have my best luck making sure I have deep enough containers with enough headroom for seedlings to sprout and still leave the covers on for awhile. I have some sunflowers I started on 12/21 (part of my ceremonial seed choice), which of course germinated with the warmth slightly thereafter. The containers I use are 1 lb. margarine (cottage cheese, etc.) size, and I have kept the lid on those puppies - they are not growing very fast anyway; still don't have second leaves. They have survived all the freezes in the 20s.

Others have given you good advice - perennials, hardy annuals, herbs and cool season vegetables (that you aren't direct sowing) can be done now, and really should be done soon - it heats up fast in these parts when it heats up!

Good luck!

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RE: WSing in the South?

I'm new to, although tried this a few years ago. I'm in central alabama, can I use the plastic jugs coffee comes in? I'm interested in starting moon flowers and other flower seeds.


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RE: WSing in the South?

Layne 88, usually containers that are clear or cloudy are used so that the seedlings get light. If you are talking about the blue maxwell house or the red folgers coffee jugs with handles, I might try that too, but just be sure the seedlings get light and you can cover them (with vent holes) with a clear or cloudy plastic bag or plastic wrap for the mini greenhouse effect. These containers will probably last awhile and not deteriorate like milk jugs do. I will probably use organic salad containers and large plastic cups like from fast food places. The cups I have are tapered at bottom and I think I can squeeze the hunk of seedlings out when ready to plant. I save "wet umbrella bags" and subway sandwich bags and clear newspaper bags and these can be used to make the covers.
Laurie near Tupelo MS


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RE: WSing in the South?

Layne 88, usually containers that are clear or cloudy are used so that the seedlings get light. If you are talking about the blue maxwell house or the red folgers coffee jugs with handles, I might try that too, but just be sure the seedlings get light and you can cover them (with vent holes) with a clear or cloudy plastic bag or plastic wrap for the mini greenhouse effect. These containers will probably last awhile and not deteriorate like milk jugs do. I will probably use organic salad containers and large plastic cups like from fast food places. The cups I have are tapered at bottom and I think I can squeeze the hunk of seedlings out when ready to plant. I save "wet umbrella bags" and subway sandwich bags and clear newspaper bags and these can be used to make the covers.
Laurie near Tupelo MS


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RE: WSing in the South?

I tried some of those coffee containers, too. I just cut out the middle of the top, and used the ring to hold cheap plastic wrap down. Hope it works!


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RE: WSing in the South?

I have about 20 containers sitting out side. . . Sure hope they enjoyed the 7 inches of rain we've gotten in the last few days.
I also have some seeds in trays in various warm spots around the house. I am working with my brother on his first garden here in GA and he is finally warming up to the fact that we can start from seeds for less money than buying enough plants to work a garden that is going to be 20x110 feet. I am bound and determined to be right ! fingers crossed !


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RE: WSing in the South?

Layne88,

I have moon flowers in a milk jug and some under the grow light. The ones under the grow light are already about 6 inches and just beginning to get their second set of leaves. I am so excited, this year I will have white, purple and yellow moon flowers. Yeah Me LOL


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RE: WSing in the South?

These are two of my containers that were WS on Feb 2.

I also have 3 types of Marigolds, 2 types of bell peppers, several hot peppers and a few other types of tomatoes, cucumbers, lettuce, lima beans, green string beans, brussels sprouts, cauliflower . So far, everything has sprouted except the Ghost Chilis. I am giving them 2 more weeks to show signs of life before I give up. Total 35 containers


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RE: WSing in the South?

So happy to report that only 1 container left with no sprouts. That container is also the only one that got knocked over and fell off the table.

Everything else; tomatoes, peppers, Sun Flowers, Cosmos, Marigolds, cucumbers, beans and lettuce are all good size and in the ground or pots. I LOVE WINTER SOWING and am already saving containers for next year.

My final count was 59 containers, next year I hope to have that many at both my house and my brothers.

Lessons I learned - don't fuss with them
don't over plant the seeds
stop worrying- they will grow.

(In the tomato bottles, I had way too many seeds that sprouted so there were several weaklings that went to the compost pile, next year will only plant 6-8 seeds depending on the size of the container.)

Happy Gardening Everyone,

Missy


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RE: WSing in the South?

I was looking for a post on winter sowing in the south and found this one. Great post! Now I'm off to get some soil to fill my pots with this winter. Guess I'll start with Perennials in January!


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