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Growing from seed and succeeding

Updated: Oct 17, 2023

How to get the best results when growing from seed.

It's easier than you think!

Seeds, seeds, and more seeds.

There are so many options.

Like a kid in a candy store, you want every single one. Or is that just me?

But remember quality trumps quantity, every time!

Quality Seeds

  • Research and buy seeds from well-known and reputable seed suppliers, such as established seed companies, nurseries, or garden centres. They often have a history of providing reliable seeds. But do remember, sometimes what grows in other people’s gardens won’t grow in yours! So it’s worth starting with a few and seeing how you get on before splurging and buying them all 😉

  • Check for the seed's freshness date and ensure they are suited to your local climate and growing conditions.

Back of NZ seed packet

  • If possible, opt for organic or heirloom seeds. Organic seeds are grown without synthetic chemicals, making them a good choice for environmentally conscious gardeners. Heirloom seeds are open-pollinated varieties that have been passed down for generations. They often have unique flavours and characteristics.

  • Buy Local or do seed swaps. Local seeds are adapted to your region's climate and growing conditions, increasing the likelihood of successful growth. Look for seed swaps or local seed producers.

  • After purchasing, store seeds carefully. Store your seeds in a cool, dry, and dark place.

When it comes to actually sowing your seeds here are 5 things you should know.

Record Keeping

  • Experiment and Keep Records. Gardening is a learning experience. Don't be afraid to try different seed varieties and keep records of their performance. Over time, you'll discover what works best for your garden. If this feels like a lot of work, that’s totally fair. The easiest way to do this is keep a notebook (physical or digital doc) and write one line when you do things, such as,

Dated text on lined paper
Record keeping example

Over time you will start to see patterns, and in the following year you can look back to see when you did transplant or sow seeds. All to help make sure you sow seeds (and plant) at the time that best suits your garden and climate.

I’m currently doing a bunch of experimenting myself and have found it tricky to keep up in some written form (so in typical nevo fashion I made it more complex by blogging!), but really a few notes here and there - anyone can do!

Timing is Everything…mostly

Timing plays a crucial role in seed planting success.

I, however, like to tempt fate every now and then by planting seeds a little early or transplanting outside when really - my plants would have been happier indoors. Impatience really is a killer. Literally. Or, they battle through and end up being a little bit less enthusiastic, with less growth.

In principle, if you actually want EVERYTHING to grow and well (as the title of this post indicates) - then maybe stick to the timings on the packet. 😜

  • Research the recommended planting times for each specific seed variety, taking into account your local frost dates. Start seeds indoors (if you can), following a planting calendar to ensure they are ready for outdoor transplanting.


Congratulations! You have seeds that not only sprouted, but actually made it to their teenage years. Nice one.

Now to keep them thriving, no wilting or sad faces allowed, make sure you transplant them with the utmost care!

First things first,

  • Move your plants outdoors for a week or so before you plant in the garden - just so they can get used to the change in temperature and don’t go into complete shock because they are no longer sitting all cosy in your living room!

  • When transplanting seedlings into your garden, handle them gently by the leaves (or the root ball), not the stems. Plant them at the recommended spacing and ensure they are well-watered after transplanting.

Like so,

Leafy seedling being planted

I do love a good gif.

You have absolutely got this.

Get stuck in.

Happy seed sowing 🌱

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