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The 5 Most Common Mistakes Growing Seeds Indoors

You may have already made a mistake and are wondering what went wrong, or you need a little justification with your fresh batch of seeds this year. As gardeners, we all know things can take a turn for the worse quickly.

The part I love and hate about gardening is rarely things go exactly like they did the previous season. And in that is a great life lesson right? Adapt to the changes and fix what went wrong.

If you are planting a garden and want to get a head start on the growing season, be sure to avoid these five common mistakes people make when growing seeds indoors.

And don’t worry I’ve done ALL of these, and I still would not call myself a professional. I love it though and I get enough harvest to enjoy during the summer months and tomatoes through the winter. That’s the part that counts.

Read or Pin: 5 Cheap Ways to Grow Seeds Indoors

mistakes growing seeds indoors


The biggest one is watering. You may be giving too much or too little amounts of water.

The 5 Most Common Mistakes Growing Seeds Indoors

This can be one of the most difficult things and to this day I still get nervous with my watering. The best tip I have when you start is to keep your seeds covered until they sprout. You can check out my full blog post on how to start seeds indoors successfully here.

I also always pour water into the tray at the bottom. Its always best to water plants from the bottom if possible.

Don’t forget to actually touch the soil with your finger to check how it feels. We all know the signs of too dry or too wet. Make sure you check on it daily. Another thing that can be hard.

You can of course get an app for that. Waterbot is one of those.


The 5 Most Common Mistakes Growing Seeds Indoors

Starting Seeds Too Soon

This is another one I had to learn the hard way. Here in upstate New York winters can be long. Like really really really really really long. And any greenery can boost your moods. ( I’ve actually found a Sunlamp to help a lot now that I know I can’t start my seeds too early.)

Most of your plants will be ready and need to get outside in 4-6 weeks. If you plant them too early and put them outside when it’s too cold, you’ll be dissappointed.

I’ve also discovered if I start them too early, they don’t get enough sunlight, because we are still in Winter. Well you know those late surprise snow storms that last way too long.

My go to is the Farmer’s Almanac for a gardening calendar tap here and scroll down to select your state.

Plants Too Deep

This is one I knew about when my girls would help me plant, but I let it go- I just couldn’t redo a 3 year old’s planting. Which is why you may want to limit how many seeds they start. Or have them do their very own garden.

Or when they aren’t looking lightly push the little seeds closer to the surface. Those little fingers really get the seedlings down deep.

I explain this more in my seed starting post, but I always make a little hole with my finger then place a few seeds in it. And I add dry seed starting soil on top, sprinkling it lightly.

READ OR PIN: How to Get Your Kids Involved in Gardening

Grab my FREE printable on Easy to Grow Plants From Seeds!

Not Warm Enough

My best way I’ve started seeds so far has been on our indoor porch where the old hot tub used to be. It was PERFECT.

We got rid of the hot tub, because it was from 1997 and died. And the next year my seeds didn’t do as well. Even if they are near a window, but its an old drafty window, be careful.

I try to find the room with the most natural sunlight and heat. If you don’t have a spot in your home for light and warmth go ahead and get yourself a warming seedling mat.

mistakes growing seeds indoors

Giving Up

Starting seeds puts to test the strength of the the Gardner. Not every thing is going to go as your planned, and that’s okay. No matter what don’t give up and keep at it. Consistency is key. Also it’s a long haul.

The worst part is learning from your mistakes and not being able to try again until the following year.

But when you want to quit, think about the nice sun ripened tomato you can slice to put on your ham sandwich. Or toss in a salad, or BLTs. It’s worth the effort.

So don’t give up. You got this.

If you are really feeling the garden burnout, I did one year too and these tips are how I got through it.

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