Category Archives: seeds

Seeds of Hope

Merry meet all,

I love the warm glow of a candle on an overcast wet day. I love gardens and seeds too. I want to talk about how to start seeds in starter pots, because you know, its that time of year!!!

There is more to popping a seed into soil than most people know. It is a bit of an art and a science.

What you will need are seeds, seed starting soil, starter pots, water, and a sunny windowsill. Often, the seed packets come with instructions on where to plant the seeds and how deep and how far apart from other seeds. The size of the seed determines how it gets planted too. Tiny seeds rest on the surface of the soil and larger seeds can be planted deeper in the soil.

Don’t make the mistake I made and put too many seeds in one slot. They will grow better if they are spread out into several slots. I like to fill the starter pot with the right amount of soil and then water it. I let the soil settle then fill the cavity with soil. Then I add the seeds. This avoids the seed drowning in the wet soil and prepares the soil for the seeds. Do not fertilize the soil at this point. That comes much later.

Be sure the starter pot has a hole for water and that you have some form of tray beneath the starter pot. Add the seeds to the soil. If they are large, push them in deep using the end of a pencil. Tiny seeds rest on the surface of the soil. Lightly dust the soil over the seeds. Do not add compost or mulch. Just put the starter pot on the watering tray and then put that onto a sunny windowsill. You can also use grow lights.

At this stage, it is good to wait until a tiny sprout shoots up from the soil. Do not douse the plant in water when you see a sprout. Let the soil dry out between watering. Make sure the seedling gets plenty of sunlight. Also make sure there is a good comfortable temperature in the room.

When a seedling comes up, it will grow its first set of leaves. This is called a cotyledon. Then when it grows the next set of leaves, that is its true leaves. Despite what some sources tell you, its not a good idea to transplant a seedling when the second set of leaves appear. This only confuses the seedling resulting in the plant needing then to put its energy into being moved and adjusting to the new pot. Its energy should be focused on just growing in its present pot. When the roots show beneath or just at the bottom of the starter pot, then you can think of transplantation. Let the plant grow where it is. It is happier that way.

Try not to over water a seedling. It might rot, die off from over watering or its tips might turn brown. When my seedlings were starting out, I added the tiniest amount of water. I knew the sunlight and the soil would sustain them. They don’t need as much water as you believe. Oregano, sage, thyme, these herbs may have come from the Mediterranean. They are accustomed to the hot temperatures there.

Be patient. The seedling is doing the best it can. As a baby plant, like any other newborn, it takes time to grow. It will take a long time to grow to a large size anyway. even years. A true gardener is patient.

I hope this helps you to grow many lovely herbs and flowers!! I wish you luck with it. You can grow anything you want. Once you master how to start from seed, you might not buy seedlings from garden centers again. You will save money starting from your saved seeds too.

I am happy to say that I started a cherry tree from seed outside in my garden!!! I overwintered the seed in the soil. It emerged this spring. I set a circle of stones around the seedling. I also added clean chicken bones to the soil. The bones take 20 to 25 years to decompose or break down. They will become ground bone meal eventually and add nutrients to the seedling. 

I am trying a raised bed area in my garden this year too. I cleared away a patch of dead rotting wood behind the fence of the yard where I live. I used the logs for the raised bed. I plan to fill it with soil then add my indoor seedling transplants I have lovingly tended this spring. I have to clear away weeds and put down newspaper first then I can add soil. I can’t wait. It is my first time trying a raised bed. I am very excited!!!

Blessed  be, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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Spring Sprouts

Merry meet all,

My project for herby sprouts is working!! I am amazed at how a whole huge plant can start from a tiny seed. I now have a garden on my windowsill. I’m growing snapdragons, lavender, thyme, basil, moonflower and morning glories, tomatoes, pumpkins, elecampagne from seed. My calendula overwintered and is now flowering! I also just bought black rose seeds.

I accidentally snipped a calendula flower and stem. I put the stem in a glass of water and waited and waited. Several weeks later the stem grew roots which I planted back into the same pot with the other calendula. I have three sprigs of rosemary in a glass of water to grow roots.

Patience is important when growing from seed. Try not to over water the plants. That killed my dill sprout. Just add a tiny drop of water every other day or if the seedling looks limp. Keep the starter pots by a sunny window. I have a plastic bag around the starter pots which helps to trap the water. Use good seedling potting soil. It is geared towards starting plants from seed. Let the seedlings grow on their own.

My moonflower just germinated!! It is weeks away till I can plant them but it is fun to watch them grow and help them along. I use a small clear plastic mister bottle which I have watered the seedlings with. You can also water from beneath. That prevents the seedling from root rot and dying. If you do water on the surface of the soil, add a tiny amount of water.

Small to tiny seeds lie on the surface of the soil. Water the soil prior to planting the seeds so they don’t drown. Bigger seeds are planted deeper in the soil. The sprouts still push through soil. So now we have sun, soil, water and time… what else? Love. Be gentle to your plants. Let them grow and just trust that they will grow. Before you know it, you will have a full fledged garden of seedlings waiting to bloom once the frost has passed.

Don’t disturb or transplant young seedlings. Let them grow where they are. You can if you want magically empower the seeds to fulfill your magical intention. The roots take time to be fully developed. Transplanting them too early can put the seedling in shock and damage it. They are content in the home that they germinated in. When it is time to harden the seedlings and plant them outside, then you can uproot them. Again, patience is key.

My morning glory seedlings )O(

Starting your plants from seed indoors has a few advantages. They are protected from the frost, can grace your window with their beauty and you can be sure that you will have a beautiful plant growing. If you start from seed, you control the growing conditions. You can grow several of the same plant without paying a fortune. Your plants will be ready to go once the frost has passed, saving you the effort of buying the same plants from the garden center.  

I’m starting the nasturtiums from seed outside. They are easy to grow and grow well there. Snapdragons seed heads look like skulls, which is one of the reasons why I bought the seeds. I also like the sound of the plant’s name. I’m running out of room for more seedlings. This has been a magical and fun project. 

My snowdrops have bloomed. My spring bulbs are growing slowly too. I can’t wait. 

Happy planting!

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

 

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Ostara- Balance of light and dark )O(

Merry meet all,

The weather outside is frightful. Ostara is a few days away. I am trying to believe that spring is coming. Yet my snowdrops are buried under wet freezing rain/ slush. Snowdrops are sacred to the Goddess Brighid. I dedicated my snowdrops to her for that reason. Every early spring they grow. More flowers are on the way.

The sky darkens early here still. I may be the only one here but I love the dark half of the year. My dark side reveals itself a lot. I downloaded a cool photo of a skull resting on the open pages of a book. It is such a cool picture. I am currently reading Spirit Conjuring for Witches by Frater Barrabas. I have a ways to go yet. I will post a review when I have finished reading it. I will miss the dark time but I also embrace spring. I can only take so much of wearing a heavy winter coat and boots after all.

I do miss my garden. I have started echinacea, dill, thyme and lavender from seed. I hope to plant them in my garden once all chance of frost has passed. I also have rosemary and calendula cuttings which I hope will develop roots and be ready to plant in soil. I would love for once to successfully grow rosemary. I learned that rosemary doesn’t like to be moved. Dill has deep roots. Calendula will bloom if you overwinter it indoors if there is enough sun. The more I work with herbs, the more I learn from them. I intend to order mugwort, moonwort and mandrake seeds if I can. I am determined to grow a pumpkin patch this year too. I will grow beefsteak tomatoes too and peas, beans, carrots, herbs too, I planted my garlic last fall. I can’t wait. I hope to get hyssop and feverfew to grow from seed too. I have the room in my garden for all this!

I am ready for spring. I look forward to reviving my garden and not being weighed down by a woollen winter coat.

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

 

For your reading pleasure:

http://www.epicgardening.com/white-sage-plant/

https://www.gardendesign.com/plants/witch-hazel.html

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Ancestral supper on Samhain

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Merry meet all,

I enjoyed a magical evening last night. I celebrated Samhain beautifully with 3 amazing people and Spirit. I invited Stefan Loki Jordan, my Mom and Geoffrey (surprise guest) over for dinner. I previously baked black lentil soup, a frosted chocolate cake, pumpkin bread, pumpkin gingerbread, barmbrack bread, roasted pumpkin seeds and Halloween cookies. I decorated the table. I set the meals in nice dishes. I put out my photo of my beloved but not forgotten late grandfather on the table. I used wine glasses and set a place at the table for Spirit. I showed Mom how an ancestral supper is done. We ate in thoughtful silence. Rarely do I ever entertain so many people and so well. After that, we did tea leaves readings all for each other. We shared memories and partook of the barm brack bread ( fortune telling). I played the ancestral supper playlist I prepared earlier. We celebrated by following traditions of how our ancestors would have honored Samhain. It was Geoffrey’s first time to do tea leaves but he did great. We all found our totem animals too.

I sensed spirits with me as I ate. I tried to not cry. An ancestral supper always chokes me up. I was in good company though. I am very blessed. I carved a cauldron into the pumpkin as a symbol of death and rebirth. I got to enjoy 1 beer (thanks Geoffrey), and Stefan Loki Jordan and I enjoyed coke- and the tea for the readings. It was magical and wonderful. I couldn’t have wishes for a better evening.

I made a ball of incense which I plan to burn tonight in my beautiful new cauldron from the antique shop. I also bought, and melted down an orange candle and made a new candle from it for tonight. I have a skull candle, incense, resins and well.. all that food. I left the food offered to Spirit in the garden. The black plant pot is filled with graveyard dirt. It serves as an urn.

I dedicated the cauldron I bought at an antique shop. Then I performed the rite of making a pact with the spirits. I was supposed to prick my finger with a needle but it hurt. I used my saliva instead. I don’t like harming myself. Harm should never be necessary. I know I have my own strength and power to not need to harm myself. Menstrual blood can be used in magic. It may seem gross but it is powerful. It is a part of us. It will be a less harmful substitute. I am committed to my course. I also thought the timing of making the pact on October 31st was perfect. I knew the spirits were present.

I hope you all enjoyed Samhain!!! 365 more days to go till next Samhain!

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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Mabon

Samhain scene

Merry meet,

Today marks the beginning of fall and the end of summer. The sun’s shining hard over my garden, which is winding down for the cold season. Yesterday I baked two golden loaves of onion bread. They tasted amazing. I stored them in the freezer. I love to bake my own bread.

Mercury Retrograde goes direct today. You can all breathe a sigh of relief. The signs of autumn are around us. Pumpkins appeared in the stores, leaves turn color and trickle to the earth, and an early chill is in the air. Even if you work a day job, try to get out of the house to enjoy the first day of fall. A squirrel hops over the tree branches outside. He’s storing seeds for the winter season.

Stock up on pumpkins, save garden seeds, and harvest your herbs. Today is a day to celebrate the fall season. The best way to do that is to go outside. Explore a nature trail, clean up the garden, and soak up the sunshine.

Dig out your cardigans. Its the perfect time to examine your wardrobe and donate unwanted or unused clothing or other items to a thrift store. Clean up your fall coats, shawls, ponchos, cloaks and cardigans. Put away summer clothes. I love fall because I finally get to wear ‘fall style’ clothing. I plan to sew myself a few new shawls, skirts and dresses this fall.

Decorate your home with ears of corn, squashes, gourds, pumpkins and pretty jars and vials of garden harvested seeds. Score some cool finds from the local crafts shops for Halloween items to decorate your place.

This will lift you into the spirit of autumn. Merry Mabon

 

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

 

 

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Vines in a knot

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Merry meet all,

Are you having trouble with growing root veggies? You are not the only one. However I have some helpful tips for you. The trick to growing anything successfully is Phosphorus!!! It is what feeds plants and most helps them to grow. 

It could be you need to clear roots, rocks and weeds out of your garden area. Try to do that before planting anything and being disappointed. Soil should be crumbly and loose- and full of earthworms. The next step is to amend the soil. Lime sweetens the soil but bear in mind that tomatoes and a few other plants need acidic soil. Phosphorus encourages flower bloom and root growth. Add bone meal and seaweed to the soil. Work it into the soil with a spade or tiller.  Water the soil thoroughly afterwards. Then wait and watch your garden improve. Seaweed is extremely beneficial to soil. 

This fall, I’m adding more spring bulbs and elephant garlic to my garden. I just successfully transplanted comfrey to keep the large weeds at bay. Comfrey stands its ground in the garden. Bees love comfrey. A win win all around. The next task is to figure out how to grow my tomato plants indoors and keep them from my cat. I’ll let you know how that goes. 

 

Till then,

Blessed Be, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

 

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Flower Power

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Merry meet all,

Insects love plants. They want to help pollinate your plants or eat your plants. Insects flock to my garden in droves with a hunger for my plants or a thirst for pollen. I just photographed a nasturtium and discovered an aphid on it. A little green bug scurried for cover. It keeps them away from the other tasty plants. 

I have found a deterrent for slugs in my garden. Can you guess it yet? Ok eggshells. I have saved all my eggshells to scatter around plants on the soil. It works! slugs don’t like slithering over sharp edges or objects. Diluted dish soap will work too. If anyone has any other nontoxic suggestions for insecticides, I would love to hear them. 

That all said, I have fallen irrevocably in love with nasturtiums! I don’t know why I didn’t grow them before. My gosh, I love them. Well they are now a mainstay. I plan to save the seeds and the seeds from many other of my plants. It saves money to start plants from seed and is not hard to do. My biggest challenge of when to start from seed is knowing when to. I started my tomato plants from seed late. 

All summer, I fed my adorable guinea pig named Magic the dandy dandelions from the yard. He didn’t protest when I fed him the fresh vitamin rich leaves. The lawn is mowed. I could go farther up the nature trail to feed him dandelions. Burdock grows profusely on the nature trail and is ideal for prosperity magic. Now that the moon waxes, I may gather some for that purpose. 

I grow raspberries and rhubarb in the garden. I made my own homemade berry jam with the garden grown fruit! Yes I do own a canning kit and booklet and finally had the chance to put it to good use. So now I own 1 1/2 Mason jars of berry jam. Mmmm so good. I plan to brew more ‘potions’ in my kitchen witch kitchen. That’s why harvest time is so awesome! It’s time to get witchy in the kitchen with herbs from your own garden. 

Good luck to you as you brew your own Potions!

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch 

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Hekate’s Blessing )O(

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Merry meet all,

Hekate is a powerful Goddess. She works her dark magic in mysterious ways. She is also a goddess of love and compassion. Since I brought her into my home and life, things have changed in here. If you want something done, ask her. Don’t forget to leave offerings such as cinnamon, skeleton keys. The cinnamon can be stored in a vial or you can bind cinnamon sticks and offer that to her. 

I was frustrated with my pumpkin vine. I got the idea to ask for Hekate’s blessings. I took my Hekate statue out to my garden. I touched the statue to the plant, which prior to this, wasn’t flowering at all. I kept the statue on the plant for a few minutes. I felt the energy. She must have blessed the plant because the next thing I know, the pumpkin plant is flowering. It is also bee pollinated. A pumpkin or two are on the way. 

Tonight is the Full Moon.  The next turn in the Wheel of the Year is Lammas. Lammas is the first of the three fall harvest Sabbats.The bucks get their antlers.Now it is time to focus on the garden harvest. I want to take my Hecate statue out to each plant in my garden,which is a lot, and ask her to bless every plant in the garden. It will be a lot of work but if she works miracles, and would increase the growth, beauty and productivity then fine with me. 

Concentrate on abundance tonight as you perform your esbat. Focus on what you have around you. Ask for the Goddess’ blessing on your goals. 

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

 

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Tips on how to grow herb seedlings )O(

 

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Merry meet all,

Here are a few tips about growing plants from seed that I learned. They may help you grow better plants. 

Growing seeds in the ground or in peat pots- there are two ways to start herbs or flowers. For root veggies, you have to start them in prepared moist composted soil. The soil should be full of nutrients, not be dry as a bone and contain compost. There is a spot in my backyard under dead trees and dead leaves that is composted soil. I occasionally scoop up soil from that spot and deposit it where I am growing veggies or flowers. It adds nutrients to the plants. If all the soil was totally sterile, nothing would grow. Good soil is full of insects (get used to that- they’re there to help), contain grass,  dead leaves or other plants or nitrogen. I worked limestone into my soil. Limestone sweetens and regulates soil. I suggest working limestone in early spring or in the fall. 

I put hollyhock seeds in the soil. Nothing. So now I am starting them in peat pots. Now they are germinating. (typical). But if you start them in peat pots, you can keep them in the pots without disturbing the roots. This is one example when it is almost better to start with peat pots to ensure the seeds germinate. I really wanted to grow black hollyhock seeds and now I can. Soon when the true leaves appear, I can plant them outside and let them blossom!! I put lettuce seeds outside. Sometimes the seeds rot or get buried too deep into the soil because of the rain. They never germinated. So I put the seeds in peat pots. Now they are germinating. …. 

Also, if you can, place the peat pots on a tray. I find it very helpful to water plants from below. This makes the plant develop stronger roots. The plant has to pull up the water to replenish the roots. If you water from above regularly, damping off can occur. The plant rots. Water the plant about an inch a week from below. Be patient and gentle. Turn the pots to let the roots get exercise. 

The hollyhocks’ roots will get established in the soil over the winter. Letting a plant stay in its spot over the winter lets the roots get to know it’s ‘home’, so to speak, save for annuals. This is also helpful for plants. 

Make sure your seedlings receive ample sunlight. With all of this care, you may have beautiful healthy strong seedlings to plant in your outdoor garden. Plants are happier outdoors where they get sunlight wind, help from good bugs and sunlight. 

Good luck! Happy planting

Blessings, Lady Spiderwitch )O(

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Plant Homes

Seedling Magick

Merry meet all,

I love my garden. My garden is on the brink of being in full floral glory. The plants are growing but the buds haven’t blossomed. I can’t wait for seeing many flowers in bloom. The mauve canterbury bells. purple coneflower, tiger lilies, heliopsis, and astible are about to bloom. 

I suffer from the crazy idea that I have to cover every inch of my garden with green. I just transferred a thick clump of woodruff to another spot of the garden because it was choking out the dead nettle. I also evicted the insanely invasive violets to a neighbour’s lawn patch. I also planted woodruff there. The violets and the woodruff will grace that patch with tiny white woodruff flowers and the violet flowers. I don’t care if they grow and become invasive there. They were choking out everything in my garden. No rest for the green Witch. 

I have just planted buttercrunch lettuce seeds. Mmmm I can’t wait to harvest that. The nasturtiums have germinated. The nasturtiums will guard and defend the other plants as they grow, attracting the aphids to the nasturtiums. 

So my garden is a labor of love. But I don’t mind strolling first thing in the morning with my hot coffee in hand. My garden is a place of serenity and peace. I can say there is more serenity in my garden than in my life. I don’t think I am the only one who feels that way. 

WHen you are transplanting, be sure to get the roots as well when you remove a plant from its spot. Dig well in its new home before setting the plant and roots. Water the plant well after transplanting it. Soon the plant will adjust to its new home and grace that spot with its beauty. 

Blessed Be, Lady Spiderwitch )O( 

 

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