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Grow tent for starting tomato seeds

Scott (Long Island, NY--7b)
2 months ago
last modified: 2 months ago

After a couple of years skipping it I'd like to start some tomato seedlings again.

I do so in my basement. It was wrecked by Superstorm Sandy and in its present form it doesn't have its own heating system but it kept at a decent temperature by the presence of the boiler and related piping. I couldn't say the average temperature but it's not anywhere near at risk of freezing.

In the past I put seed trays on an old table with various flourescent and LED lights above them and (until they sprouted) a warming mat underneath. It worked fine, but the tomatoes would get somewhat leggy, which persisted even after I replanted them (planted deep) and moved them upstairs to a sunny room in the weeks before going outside.

I was debating using a grow tent this year but am vacillating. I probably already have enough lighting for it, but I was wondering if maybe--unless I add ventilation--I'd be going from a somewhat too-cool environment to a too-warm one. I'll probably have two dozen various tomato plants, plus a tray or more of pollinator-friendly plants I want to get a head-start on, so I'd need a tent large enough for that.

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