Basement Ecology

The best place to start seeds is a basement, as you’ll be able to hang the grow lights from floor joists. Wherever you choose to grow your seeds, you’ll need a way to hang lights and ample space for a table large enough to accommodate a few seed flats. Use a combination of ceiling hooks, S-hooks, and a light-duty chain to hang fluorescent shop-light fixtures with wide-spectrum bulbs of 5500 Kelvin or more from your floor joists.

There are several varieties of reusable plastic flats, pots, and trays available at nurseries. Most seedling flats and trays measure about 21 inches by 11 inches. The most foolproof planting method is to place a seed flat with drainage holes within a standard drip tray—the nested tray can easily be removed to drain excess water. Single pots will work, but they require a more labor-intensive draining process.