Start growing: Indoor gardening in your LED Habitat

Ideas for getting started: Enjoying the pleasures of indoor gardening with your LED Habitat indoor grow light.

Suggestions and how-to's for a variety of indoor gardening projects, including:
  • Growing delicious fresh herbs in your kitchen.
  • Starting and growing living bouquets, year-round.
  • Creating indoor miniature landscapes or fairy gardens.
  • Starting vigorous garden transplants from seed.
  • Giving a thoughtful gift of indoor gardening to a new gardener, a northern gardener, a senior gardener, or anyone with limited access to outdoor gardening.
You'll find a wide range of ideas for getting started in this category. We encourage you to comment and share your own experiences, getting started with your LED Habitat or LED Habitat Pro, too. [caption id="attachment_182" align="alignleft" width="300"]Indoor gardening with flowers in a Maple LED Habitat Maple LED Habitat with an indoor flower garden[/caption] For example, if you're new to gardening, this is the place to look for tips about seed starting. If you're an experienced gardener, we hope you'll find suggestions here that will inspire you to start a new indoor gardening adventure in your LED Habitat. And if you're giving an LED Habitat as a great indoor gardening gift, posts in this category can help your lucky recipient with ideas and how-to's to get started.
  • Starting seeds indoors in your LED Habitat or Habitat Pro

    Perfect lighting for starting seeds indoors

    Three of my favorite ways to garden in my LED Habitat and LED Habitat Pro grow light include:

    1. starting seeds indoors to create an indoor garden,

    2. growing herbs and flowers indoors from purchased seedlings,

    3. growing and showcasing miniature or fairy gardens.

    In this post, I'm focusing on starting seeds indoors, using Habitat Seed Mats or seeds purchased from your favorite garden supplier. I'll share other indoor gardening ideas in future blog posts, and I hope you'll both follow along and share your own indoor gardening experiences!

    Starting Seeds Indoors with Habitat Seed Mats

    Habitat Seed Mats are an easy way to plant in your Habitat planting tray a mix of edible flowers, herbs, or salad greens. While Habitat Seed Mats can also be planted and grown outdoors (in flower boxes or garden plots, for example) they are custom-sized to drop right into Habitat Planting Trays for easy planting. Here's a video, showing how easy it is to plant a Seed Mat in a Habitat Planting Tray:

    A center row of fast-flowering Brassicas makes it easier to wait for slower-germinating seeds A center row of fast-flowering Brassicas makes it easier to wait for slower-germinating seeds

    Every Habitat Seed Mat has a unique feature: a center row of fast-flowering Brassica seeds that will germinate in just a few days and flower in only 2 weeks. This petite turnip relative will give you fast gratification as they quickly grow. Pictured here is a 2-week old Herb Habitat Seed Mat with fast-flowering Brassicas in full bloom. You can see that the basil gets started pretty quickly, too. Tiny thyme, marjoram, and oregano seeds take a little longer to germinate. After this photo, I snipped out the fast-flower Brassicas so they wouldn't shade nearby herb seedlings.

    One of my favorite things about starting seeds indoors is being able to watch closely as each seedling pushes its way through the soil and unfurls its solar panels (the first leaves to open). When you purchase already-growing seedlings from a nursery, you miss out on that amazing event!


    Indoor Kitchen Garden, Edible Flowers, and Herb Gardens

    2-week-old Kitchen Garden Seed Mat A 2-week-old Kitchen Garden Seed Mat

    Salad greens grown in your Habitat can be harvested and eaten as baby leaf lettuce without ever transplanting outdoors. The small, flavorful mesculin mix greens in the Kitchen Garden Seed Mat add fresh flavors to your salad. The center row of Fast-flowering Brassicas can be used when they are in full flower as a bright yellow, edible garnish.

    Other salad greens that you start from seed indoors can also be transplanted into larger containers or outdoors to grow full sized heads of lettuce, spinach or arugula. The size of plants you grow is determined by the type of seed planted (the genetics of the your seed variety), how much soil the plants have to grow in (soil volume) and the nutrients that are available in the soil (often supplemented with compost or fertilizer).

    Dwarf varieties of flowers can be grown to full flower in your Habitat Planting Tray if thinned & given nutrients (N-P-K fertilizer or compost) Starting Seeds Indoors: Dwarf varieties of flowers can be grown to full flower in your Habitat Planting Tray if thinned & given nutrients (N-P-K fertilizer or compost)

    Miniature varieties of annual flowers such as zinnias and marigolds will thrive in your Habitat and produce beautiful flowers without being transplanted outdoors, too. Annual flower seeds are available in the Habitat Edible Flower Seed Mat or your favorite garden center or hardware store. I particularly enjoy the annual flowers that are included in Habitat Seed Mats--zinnias, marigolds, snapdragons, and calendulas. They are quick to produce brilliantly colored flowers that create a living bouquet in my Habitat.

    I do enjoy receiving a lovely salad at a fine restaurant that is garnished with beautiful flowers, and while I do love adding microgreens to salads, I have to admit that I've only added flowers to salads a couple of least, so far...

    Starting Seeds Indoors: Spice up your cooking with home-grown herbs

    Herbs started from seed, then transplanted to grow into larger plants for a steady supply of herbs for cooking. Herbs started from seed, then transplanted to grow into larger plants for a steady supply of herbs for cooking.

    Growing fresh herbs to cook with or use to create herb-infused water is really satisfying. The alternatives--using dried herbs (very different flavor profile) or buying packaged fresh herbs in the produce aisle--pale in comparison. And nearly always when I purchase fresh herbs, a substantial portion of the pack ends up in my compost pile :(  Instead, consider starting seeds indoors for favorite your herbs. This can be a satisfying and delicious way to use your LED Habitat!

    Planting herb seeds can be challenging for even the most nimble fingers because herb seeds are typically among the smallest seeds you'll work with. Many times I've tried to sprinkle the seeds evenly along a row in a planting tray only to find when they germinate that I planted three or four dense clumps of seeds instead. However, planting herb seeds is easy with a Habitat Herb Seed Mat.

    You'll still have a little gardening to do after your seedlings break through the surface, and that's the fun of gardening with a Habitat—you can garden on a table or counter without any back-breaking bending or squatting and enjoy a cup of coffee as you thin or gently transplant a few seedlings.

    LED Habitat Pro Tending plants in an LED Habitat or LED Habitat Pro (pictured) can be enjoyed year-round. Plus, countertop gardening eliminates the need for back-breaking stooping. Everyone can enjoy the joy of gardening with an LED Habitat!

    Once your herb plants are established, you can decide if you want to thin and keep growing them in your Habitat Tray or transplant them into pots so that they grow a bit larger. Herb plants will stay LED Habitat sized and healthier if you trim and use some of their branches. We can share more about growing herbs in a future post--there are so many possibilities!

    The Satisfaction of Starting Seeds Indoors

    Whatever your choices are for starting seeds indoors in your LED Habitat, the best part is developing a close relationship with the plants you grow. Plants and humans have been living and working together in the soil of gardens and farms for a very long time, and there is no question that both plants and humans benefit from this relationship on many levels. Go find seeds for the plants you enjoy, then plant and tend them and watch them grow--there's nothing else like it!

1 Item(s)