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5 Helpful Supplies for Starting Seeds

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Starting garden plants from seed can be a little bit tricky, but these helpful supplies for starting seeds will really help you! Make sure you have the supplies you need to get your seedlings off to the very best start!
5 Helpful supplies for starting garden seeds

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5 Helpful Supplies for Starting Seeds

I’m excited to kick off the Gardening series on Simplify, Live, Love! Our ground is still frozen and our temperatures are still well below average and below freezing, but it’s time to start seeds for my garden, nonetheless. I planted some of my seeds on 2/21 and more this past weekend. Last year, my seed starting shelf was pretty haphazard and a little unwieldy. This year I asked my husband to build me something I wouldn’t be so embarrassed to blog about. 🙂 And he came through big time. Behold! An awesome seed starting shelf, built by my handsome hubby in about an hour.

5 helpful supplies for starting seeds

Besides some sort of shelf and lights, many other items can make or break your success starting seeds. Here are a few supplies that are helping me this year!

1. Containers – you can buy them or make them. I made mine last year out of a variety of free items I had at home, but this year I chose to buy transplantable containers. I just wanted something a little bit tidier, I think. I had a hard time managing all the different containers last year. We’ll see how the store bought containers compare this year!

5 helpful supplies for starting seeds

2. Warming Mat.  I added warming mats this year because it’s a little cooler in the barn where I’m starting my seeds this year. The furnace in our old house kept our basement warmer, but the temperature fluctuates quite a lot in our barn so I though warming mats might be a good idea. I already had my seed starting containers so I bought the mats separately, but if you don’t any supplies, this seed starting kit with warming mat seems to be a pretty good value.

3. Organic Potting Soil. You can buy organic potting soil from your local hardware store, order on Amazon and have it shipped directly to your home, or you can follow these directions from Holly at Your Gardening Friend and make your own as well! {I cheated and bought my soil}. Soil’s obviously a pretty important component to starting seeds. Find a good soil!

4. Light Timer. Very handy for making those lights turn on and off on their own. Despite my best intentions, I forget every single night to turn off the lights. Having this handy little supply makes sure my seedlings have both light and dark – important for their proper growth.

5. Garden Plant Labels or Popsicle sticks . Finally, it’s very important to properly label your seeds. Let me just tell you, all the varieties of tomatoes look the same to me after the sprout. Label your plants if you don’t want to end up with 25 cherry tomato plants and very few canners like I did a couple years ago! 😀

A few people have also recommended a fan for starting seeds, but I’ve not used one so far. I’m curious what supplies you can’t live without for starting seeds! Do share in the comments.

 Read more –

3 Free Containers for Seed Starting

11 Seed Catalogs for the Organic Gardener

No-Dig Method to Planting Potatoes

How to Make a Gutter Salad Garden


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About Michelle Marine

Michelle Marine is the author of How to Raise Chickens for Meat, a long time green living enthusiast and rural Iowa mom of four. An avid traveler, Michelle has lived on three different continents and has driven all four kids across the entire USA (by herself!). She loves sharing farm-to-table recipes, their family travel adventures, and gardening and homesteading tips on her popular lifestyle blog, SimplifyLiveLove.com.


  1. blankJean Diemer says

    Hi Michelle,

    So I’ve never tried to start my seedlings inside but you helped me get the “bug” to try. So nice article but what kind of light do I need to purchase to use as a grow light? There are so many out there and I have no clue what I need. Will a regular fluorescent work and how long does it need to stay on? I have a shelf in my kitchen, actually a pass through “window” from the kitchen to the family and I think I could rig it up there so it would be warm. Just need to know what type of light to purchase. The opening is 42″ long. Thanks so much for your articles. I enjoy them so much and learn so much.


    • blankMichelle Marine says

      Hi Jean – I used a regular fluorescent with a heating pad underneath for germination. I kept my seedlings in a pretty warm location though. The light needs to stay as close (down low) to the seedlings as possible. And then you move it higher as the seedlings grow. You can also use a grow lights like either of these: http://amzn.to/1EsJkWJ or http://amzn.to/18maAKA. Let me know if you have more questions! Sorry for the delay in responding. 🙂

  2. blankJean Diemer says

    Hi Michelle,

    I am new to seed sowing inside but wondered what type of light I need to purchase so I can grow my seedlings.


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