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Thread: Winter Sowing

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2001
    Location
    Zone 9a - Gulf Coast
    Posts
    9,934

    Winter Sowing

    Hey ALL!

    Most of you are familiar with the winter sowing as defined by Gardenweb. Basically, it is the same as what I do inside under fluourescents or in the greenhouse. Trudi has done a good job promoting this concept, and I have to tell you that it is awesome that it works under a blanket of snow.

    Obviously, I am not the best one to give you advice for that one. The most reliable source that I have for plants that truly require stratification is the good ole refrigerator. I suppose you could say that we have far more warm days than cold ones in the winter. Today is not one of those warm days, but they will be back in a few days. It is about 56 degrees now, and that is cold compared to the mid to upper 70s that we have been having.

    The other thing that Trudi and the GW WS'ers discuss is the types of containers they use to winter sow. Cottage cheese containers have been a favorite for pass along type plants (cuttings, seedlings, etc.) for as long as I can remember. Even old fashioned (waxed paper) milk cartons have been used for ages.

    However, the newer part is the use of plastic or some sort of covering to create a coldframe/greenhouse effect. This maintains the humidity level while keeping out excessive rains which can and will wash many seedlings away from where they were intended to sprout. It also protects from early/late spring frosts after the seeds have sprouted.

    So, now, my question is: How many of you have tried winter sowing rather it be the GW WS definition or any other type of winter sowing?

    I do remember sowing mixed packages of perennial seeds directly in the gardens years ago. I had some neat plants grow that took me awhile to identify, but it was fun. However, lots of them did not grow. Part of that is due to the fact that some of the popular perennials do not do well when confronted with heavy spring rains and long, hot/warm summers. Others simply need more cold dormancy.

    Anyone try this?
    Ann B.
    Zone 9a
    Gulf Coast


  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    northern virginia
    Posts
    366
    I do intend to try it out this year. I went to wintersown.org and got some seeds that work well, they say. Am anxious to try them. Have raided the recycle bins and have lots of 1 liter coke bottles to use. Saw a posted photo of several coke bottles nestled in the snow awaitiing the warm temps, so I am going to get busy here this week and put out some bottles and seeds.
    As I understand it, they get put out into direct sunlight and await the coming of spring.

    I will certainly start up some lettuce and spinach this way to get a head start on spring. Maybe some sugar snap peas as welll. I need to look over the wonderful seeds I got from Wintersown.org, new tomato seeds came as well.
    I am still looking for the Greek oregano (hirtus?), saw the seeds in either Burpee or Park's, so will probably send for some.
    Will let you know how it all works.
    Linda
    Last edited by lbfoss; 01-09-2006 at 08:59 AM.
    Linda

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    northern virginia
    Posts
    366
    Here is a wonderful source of ideas for containters to use for winter sowing. the website offers lots of ideas of seeds that will benefit from this form of sowing.

    http://www.wintersown.org/wseo1/Photographer_Phred.html

    I love the website as it has a lot of neat ideas.
    Hope others will enjoy it as well.
    Linda
    Linda

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