Homemade Seed Starter

Hey everyone,

And happy spring!  We hope you’r just as excited as us to rotate the garden into summer crops.  Our winter served very well on leafy greens, broccoli, cauliflower, beets, and the occasional monster carrot.  Still we miss our tomatoes and peppers and look forward to a change in our meal plan.

Right down to it.

I recently took a very non-structured fancy free approach to creating seed starter mix to get a start on seedlings.  Frankly, even I have mixed opinions about starting from seeds for the purpose of saving money.  It takes a little coddling, attention, SPAAAACE, and those seed packets aren’t entirely cheap if your garden goal is to have a variety of different plants and vegetables.  If you’re like me here’s what you’ll buy:

And here’s what you’ll use:

To ultimately plant this:

Big on variety here.  Prefer to have many different plants.  Any season I can have six different kinds of peppers, and 10 varieties of tomatoes.  Sometimes buying seeds is the only way to get the plant that you want.  Seed starter mix had been tricky for us over the years.  You can buy seed starter mix for ~$8 at a hardware store, and it’s corresponding specialized formula fertilizer.  But in addition to costing a lot (you need more than one bag) you don’t feel sustainable using it (both the plastic bag, and it uses peat moss which is not sustainable).  And as usual we just like doing things ourselves.


Little disclaimer here-Online you can find way more effortful and possibly better seed starter mixes, which include uncommon household items like perlite and vermiculite.  But this is what WE used this year, and frankly it worked very well.

  • Coconut Coir-almost 50%
  • Compost, homegrown-~30%
  • Potting Soil (which we happened to have lying around, and this tends to have perlite, vermiculite, sphagnum, etc.)-~20%

Another disclaimer.  We didn’t fret too much over the ratios.  The coconut coir retains the moisture, the potting soil helps with the fluff, and the compost is the plant food.  I’ve made this without potting soil and it work OK too.