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First Time WS#8: Still sowing? Growing?

Buckley, WA(Zone 7b)

Good news, my babies survived the cold night. I want to start planting some in the ground, but I don't want to get too hasty after getting them this far. Patience.... I am now a WS believer.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Lynn -- i've planted out a few things already.

Tunic Flower
Poppies :
- 8th Wonder
- Peony Poppy

Dianthus Micro Chip

Where has the season gone?? there are still more seeds i want/need to germinate.

I have only WS'ed 1 MG [no germination yet] but yesterday i found a seedling out in a bed. I'm thinking it's GrandPa Ott, due to the seedlings location.

It just started pouring again... checked the radar though, and it should blow thru quickly... the winds here have been howling the past few days.... yesterday i actually found it tiring to be out there in it. Luckily none of my containers blew away... i had some of them out 'sunning' on my patio ,,, then the winds really whipped up and i had to get them back in their boxes. And silly me - i was out there with my note pad and clip board with spreadsheets trying to take inventory -- that wasn't gonna happen... everything kept blowing away - than heavens i have a fenced yard.

Hopefully i can get out there after the rain, as i know i have a few more seedlings that i have not had a chance to make note of,

[listening to the weather in the background..... some storms may be severe, winds 25-40mph ... no mention of gusts]

Buckley, WA(Zone 7b)

I am so behind in my record keeping. I have scraps of notes everywhere, in pockets, in the GH, in the garage, laundry room, by the computer. I really need to get organized.
I agree, Teresa, where has the time gone? I still have seeds to sow, also.
Yesterday, I almost planted the Cherry Tomatoes and the Atkinson Tomatoes that I got from the Piggy Swap in an EB. They are still small, is it better to wait until they are larger?

Cumberland Mtns, TN(Zone 6b)

my spreadsheet went to heck too! but, I did stick the last two plantings into separate baggies. maybe i can still catch up.

i wanted to plant this afternoon too but its in the 80's again today. then this evening I'm taking pictures for my DN's prom. maybe i can get a few plants in before dark.

we had the trees trimmed a few months agoand they had to cut two down so my yard is FULL of sunlight now. i have a feeling i'm going to miss the shade.

As a former Washingtonian, I'd give the tomatoes a chance to grow and not put them out until about 15 May. But then, I grew up on "the other side". When I lived in Seattle, I never planted tomatoes out until early June!

This comment may generate some other ideas, from folks still growing in the PNW, but I think waiting is better.

Buckley, WA(Zone 7b)

Jim, I have to agree with you. I was just over anxious. When I brought them outside, they looked so small. I am going to take them out of their teeny pots and pot them up, but leave them in the GH.
I feel for you Teresa. I hate the severe wind. I grew up near Omaha, NE
Nannie, I am envious of your Farmer Tan! I would love to see a few days of 80 degrees. Post the pictures, not the Farmer Tan pix, LOL, well maybe the guys would like them!

I may be the only guy here, but I'm always open to pics of tanned women gardeners!

I am still "transplanting" my WS plants. I guess I am just less organized than others : I simply do not yet have places to put them!!! Priority goes to the veggie beds. Actually, the transplanting is pretty cool, because you get to see these plants begin to mature; and you get to give them away; and you get to hear people say, can "I have one of those?"

Anita asked about 3 or 4 screen pages earlier if I was now "sold" on WS.
Well, in a word, "No".

I will have far more flower plants than I have ever had before. AND that's great.
So far, way less than 50% of what I WSed has shown up. That's not cool
[I admit that all failures may be my own for WSing seeds I should have sown indoors or sown later; but how do you know if you don't try? Unfortunately, some that have not germinated are ones I normally germinate indoors. Fortunately, some that have not germinated are ones I normally germinate indoors AND I kept seed!]
I am also disappointed that some of my "experimental" seeds (crosses, mutants, other oddities) that normally require vernalization have failed to germinate by WS. Again, I have kept extra seeds to try under my usual controlled conditions.
I planted 3 varieties of tomato as a WS test. So far, only 1 has germinated. Meanwhile, my "normally grown" tomatoes are burgeoning! The "test" is not done yet, of course, but WS for tomatoes is not looking good.
I sowed 6 varieties of peppers and chiles in WS, and 46 varieties inside to grow under lights. I had success with 43 of the indoor sown peppers, and most are now outside during the day and in the GH at night as 6" - transplants (I cannot reliably put them into the garden until the end of May). Not a one of the WS varieties have appeared yet (and all sown were ones that did successfully germinate indoors)

Consequently, I remain "iffy" on WS.
I see both advantages and disadvantages.
I do think, however, since this is my first attempt, that there is a lot to learn from this, and that a more judicious choice of seed to sow (and when) in subsequent years will probably add this technique to my repertoire as suitable for suitable plants, if that is clear!

(Bev) Wytheville, VA(Zone 6a)

Hello all,
This is my first year to winter sow and I'm very impressed! I'm also scared to death to lose the sprouts I have so far, and very nervous that if everybody survives... where in the world am I going to put them, and when will I have time to plant them!?

Edited: Removed outside link to spreadsheet. Sorry if I offended, or worried, anyone with the link.

Have fun,

This message was edited Apr 25, 2009 9:19 PM

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Uggggggg. we jsut got pelted by hail!! i ran out to cover my seedlings... all seemed OK, but i did toss a sheet over the.
and brought in my Yvonnes.... luckily that was unscathed.... as were all my new hostas in pots.

Just out of curiosity, why are those of us referring to our "journals/records/spreadsheets/etc" not referring to DG Garden Journal records? That's where all of my data is, but when I refer to it, no one seems to look at it.
Is the DG Garden Journal format not useful to folks? Hard to refer to?
Why would you prefer an X'cel spreadsheet?

I'm just really curious, because I have been using the DG Garden Journal and found it really useful for WS, so I am really curious why others keep referring us to weird offline databases.

With all due respect, not knowing "Sundownr", there is no way I am going to open my computer to rabid viruses by clicking on a "" link when DG offers a perfectly good, and secure, journal option . . . unless someone can give me a good explanation of why that was a better choice than using DG's secure sytem and how safe it is for me to access that remote point.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Jim -- i think it's because i know excel and find it easy to work with... I have not had the time to figure out The Journal ... i thought i would have over the winter... but i dont know where all that time went.

Each year i can add sheets to my "Book" so i have the previous years to refer to. It's jsut been easy for me... and for me to enter all that data into what Daves offers... i shutter at the time that may take... and time i just dont have right now.
I've got well over 200 seeds in my database, then i have a list for the containers I've sown.

cripes... and i'm a house wife... i honestly dont know how working women/men do it.

I'll take a peek at your journal ... when i get a free moment tonight... now if i can just remember why I sat down in this chair again.... I know it was for something not Daves related..... but i tend to be drawn here.


Corrales, NM(Zone 7a)

Honestly Jim I have tried to figure out the garden journal and I haven't been able to figure out how to add to it!

I have always been familiar with making databases in Excel so that is what I used. this way I can sort data by the categories I have included. I also use for a lot of applications. It is a very safe application to use and to share.

Here is my google doc spreadsheet. I haven't updated the most recent rash of sprouts. I only have about 25 containers out of 115 that haven't germinated.

This message was edited Apr 25, 2009 7:36 PM

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Lissa -- says "no permission"... Mine too is uploaded to Google Docs.

Corrales, NM(Zone 7a)

ok, updated the link, that one should work now. :)

(Bev) Wytheville, VA(Zone 6a)


I'm very sorry if I broke some type of protocol with the outside link to my WS spreadsheet on Google. I wasn't aware that viruses could be hidden in them, but I guess it's possible, so I removed it.

To answer your question, I used Google Docs for my spreadsheet because it was handy, I'm already familiar with it, and I haven't taken the time to look over the Journal and how it functions. I'm sure the Journal is a great little tool, as others have said, and some day I will get around to looking at it.


Corrales, NM(Zone 7a)

OH Bev, I don't think there is any rule about it. I was very interested to see your seeds and what you have growing. I think Jim was just being cautious, and there is nothing wrong with that! Everyone has their own comfort level with sharing information and clicking on links, etc. I have a whole business online and so I go a lot of places and see a lot of things. Google docs is one of the programs I use a lot so I didn't have a problem using their link. :)

Welcome! Glad you could join us. It is so fun to see the different types of seeds everyone grows. I am not doing a lot of veggies yet. I only have a cherry tomato so far, but I had 10 sprouts that came up. LOL. I will probably be able to keep the whole county in cherry tomatoes!

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Here's my "Docs" on google

Bev - Sundownr ... i missed yours and now i see you edited it out... i'd like to take a peek... i like ot see how others do their spreadsheets. If you dont want to repost it... you can send it in Dmail.

I think LissaD answered for me!
There is no protocol, and you did not offend in any way, Sundownr.
It's just that DG has the tools, yet I find that few seem to be using them.
At the same time, having spent 1000s of dollars replacing a system wiped out by opening a "google" document -- not to mention the ongoing project after 7+ months of reconstructing an address book and recreating lost documents and info -- there is no way I will again open a "google"-based document.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

ouch Jim -- that stinks... i too would be "shy" of any 'off site' docs too.

Is it morning already... or you just dont sleep much?

Corrales, NM(Zone 7a)

Ouch is right! It is crazy when things like that happen for sure. Sorry to hear that happened to you!

Buckley, WA(Zone 7b)

I use the DG Journal somewhat. I have not updated this past month, though. I will look at yours, Jim, to get some ideas. I am not very familiar with Excel.

Some days, I just don't sleep much, Teresa! Comes with aging, I guess.

I never knew about the DG Journals until I started WS, and now I find it irreplaceable.
I also use Xcel for some things, such as keeping track of heights, spacing, light, water & fertilizer requirements of perennials. So, in my opinion, they all work together.

For reference to others' work, however, I like the DG Journals because I am 99% sure that if I open one I'm not going to be "bitten" by some new bug that will get past my firewall and anti-virus.

Long Island, NY(Zone 6b)

I use a combination of Excel and Acess. I like them because of the ease of manipulation and reporting of data.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

anita -- for some reason... i just can't get the hang of access.
I was hoping my library would have a 'class' for it [like they do word, excel and PP] but there is no demand for learning it. Odd. tried to muddle thru myself.. but i just dont get it.

>>just don't sleep much, Teresa! Comes with aging, I guess.

I hear that from my mother-in-law too, and my mom is getting close...i know she's an early riser - though she says you have to be when living in the desert [southern AZ] because you have to get the work done before it gets too hot.

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

Jim -- i see what you mean about the Journal .... i guess once i figure out how to get the data in there... it'd be easy enough to use.

i see you have "Argentine Jasmine" Mandevilla laxa -- i got some from Ilsa too.
I did mine on a heat mat in a south facing window. out of 7 seeds, i had 4 germinate ... i think 1 died ...
though there are two good sized seedlings. I'm hoping for the best - not sure how they will do in my zone, but she said they did fine for her mother - who was in a colder zone.... so we shall see.

Cincinnati, OH(Zone 6a)

I understand the sleep thing- I can't sleep past 6 a.m. anymore. Usually I'm up before 5:30. But I go to bed by 10 most of the time.

I've never learned to use the Journal, either. I've used an Excel document in the past and it works for me. I figure if I ever give up membership to Dave's my info would be lost. The spreadsheet is mine.


Cumberland Mtns, TN(Zone 6b)

i havent had time to re-do what I accidently started as a table in Word. and I lOVE working with Excell. What was I thinking?

as long as it works, no?

i actually had to water my WS jugs tonight! these 84-87 degree days weren't supposed to happen this soon. I almost lost 2 jugs from the heat, can you believe it??? it always snows when my snowball bush blooms. (which is now)

(edited to remove a wise crack that was un-necessary. yesterday was a bad day, I think. i was full of em')

This message was edited Apr 27, 2009 10:50 AM

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Jim I know I'm a bit late to react on your DG Journals. Was too busy with transplanting my WS seedlings.
As you know I'm European, so I'm not familiar with the US common names. I always use the latin/botanical names.
Your Journal is very good, but there are 2 things that it makes it very hard to work with it for me:
1. The common names are in alphabetical order, not the botanical names
2. If I want to see how some of the seeds I've WS'd are doing at other people, I have to check a lot of Journals.
I have quite a lot 'not common' plants, but even the common ones are not all on your Journal. That's not a
offense, just to let you know that I would prefer a D-base with contributions of all WS'ers.

I prefer to send my experiences to Anita (she has to wait some time, because I'm too busy now). She has a good system. If everyone sends hers or his experiences to her, we will really have a D-base that can be used by all winter sowers.
And I think that is what we all need. I had a lot of good germinations, but some seeds gave just one or two sprouts. Some others didn't sprout at all.
And, altough I have my D-base in Lotus, I can transfer it to Excel.
And, if some people have no Excel or other compatible D-base, I think Anita will try to publish their results, as she can get some help doing that.

Conroe, TX(Zone 9a)

Help it is raining buckets here. I just planted out some of my WS containers this weekend and I am afraid those and the ones still in the milk jugs out there are going to drown. It is raining buckets and I just saw a huge turtle hot footing it down the 17th fairway behind my house. He was heading north! :o)

New Braunfels, TX(Zone 8b)

We've had lot's of rain, too. Love it, though. Your turtle story reminded me of one of my own. Believe it or not, we had a turtle crossing sign on a street near our home with this silly looking turtle on it similar to deer crossing signs. Shortly after it was put up, it disappeared. We assumed someone thought it would look better on their wall. The saddest part was that less than a week later there was a dead turtle on the road right by where the sign was! I guess he didn't see that the sign was missing!

If you have a good amount of drainage holes in your jugs, I'm thinking they will be fine.

Cumberland Mtns, TN(Zone 6b)

more sun today. its been in the 80's since last thursday! 20% chance of rain.

i shouldn't admit this but the first flower that was up, the one thats been without a lid the longest has buds on it!!! i should take a picture with one sticking thru the hole where the cap goes.

i was out of town till after 8pm last night and did something crazy to my back putting my sewing machine in and out and in the back seat to get it cleaned and serviced yesterday and I dont know if i can work outside again today. needless to say my machine stayed outside last night.

i need a helper!


I do see you points, but let me respond.
As you know, I live in Europe (and, in fact, have not lived in the USA for 2/3rds of my life!), so I hardly know any "Common Names". Sometimes, I know the American ones; sometimes I know the Thai ones; sometimes I know the French one; and, most often, as I deal with all these flowers that are essentially new to me, I don't have a clue!
When I open my Journal, it is alphabetical by botanical name. If, when, you look at it, it is alphabetical by "common name". that is just one of those weird defaults of DG.
And it's easy to fix! Just move your courser over the column "Genus", click, and "voila!", the list will be in alpha order by botanical name!

Of course, my journal will have only the seeds I have started; and that probably has SOME overlap with yours, but only some.

"Lotus"!!! I actually did not know it still existed; or at least not in a form compatible with modern computers! I learn something new every day!
Of course, that's the other problem, from my perspective. If I were to contribute to a "D-base with contributions of all WS'ers", I'd have to either use or be able to convert my own info to a standard format in a software programme that would require me to do everything! With the DG Journal, I just enter info. It's all set up for me! And, if I go look at someone else's Journal, I know how it works and can follow what they have done easily.

Just my thoughts on this.

Now, I have to get back to transplanting!!!

Büllingen, Belgium(Zone 6b)

Jim, I found out that it is really easy to get the botancial names in alphabetical order. Thanks for your help on this. Now I can really use your journal.
I know Lotus is very 'old', but it is much easier to use than Excel and much better. I can convert Lotus (1995 version, so 14 years old) to Excel, but I can't convert Excel to Lotus. I hate that Microsoft always tries to keep their customers away from any other program. I started my D-base in Lotus and I want to keep it there. Really don't want to have to do all the extra's I must do in Excel.
Maybe there is someone who can learn us to send in all our experiences on WS, independent which program one uses.

Cumberland Mtns, TN(Zone 6b)

Here's what I planted today from my WS jugs. some of these are listed by the names given in seed trades:

Rose Campion (one of my favorite flowers. attached is a picture too so show how thick this thing was!)
Perennial Lupine
Delphinium - Dwarf Chinese - Blue Butterfly
Chilean Monkey Flower
Echnicea - Merlot
Wild Bergamont (which is Monarda, I believe)
Cosmos Picotee Bipinnatus (this had blooms already)
Aquilegia - Double Pleat - Blue/White
Color Wheel Garden - blue ( free gift from Select Seeds)
Cardinal Climber - Ipomeoa multifida

these were the guys screaming to get no means am I done

Thumbnail by nanniepb
Cumberland Mtns, TN(Zone 6b) tomato and pepper seeds are sprouting too. those were sown less than 2 weeks ago.

now i'm recyling jugs from my first crops to sow more seeds. this really does work IMHO. And these seeds are mostly from DG swaps. I was afraid some were too old.

guys and gals...I am hooked.these were easy to transplant as well. We are scheduled for lows in the 50's thru till next week. I think everything will have a good 'toe hold' as my grandpa would say.

i wish you all continued sucess =)

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

We're having nights back in the 40's.... so far all my babies that have been planted are doing just fine.

Putnam County, IN(Zone 5b)

I have sprouts now in my Swap Milkweed and the nicotiana that I got from Neal!!

Leesburg, FL(Zone 9b)

My guess is, i have seedlings in about half of my containers, or just under.
I haven't been able to go and do a 'head count' lately -- due to the wind and rain.

Winchester, KY(Zone 6a)

Yayyy, nanny! I had pretty good germination from the 2nd sowing of the Nicotiana sylvestris, but they're tiny and just sitting there. Hoping this warm weather gives them a boost. I've gotten some containers planted out the last few days, and am thrilled to see this rain we're getting now- they should settle in beautifully! I have germination in about 2/3s of my containers now. I discovered some slugs trying to devour my babies yesterday- something to keep an eye out for. They're typically only a problem for me on the containers that are sitting on the ground (I've moved all the containers off the deck to make room for people and furniture, LOL).

Do any of you fertilize your wintersown seedlings? They typically don't seem to need it, but I have a few jugs that seem to be growing sluggishly, and I'm thinking I'll give them a nutrient boost.

Cumberland Mtns, TN(Zone 6b)

I am not bragging because I dont think it was anything i did. because if anything, i was 'sloppy' with my sowing. But Ive only seen 3 or 4 empty jugs out of 60 plus. That means that my friends here on DG's have good seeds, eh?

Neal,my starter mix was supposed to have it, but now that we've had a few rains and snows, I plan on using fish emulsion. i read that was good for young seedlings.

whats everyone else doing?

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