Planting a seed can seem complicated if you've never done it. You will find it not so difficult after learning the procedure. Planting a seed and watching it grow into a healthy, vibrant plant is one of the most basic and natural joys of life. Seeds need three basic things to grow: water, light and soil. The more nutritious the soil is, the better your plant will grow and produce.
If you are using hybrids, then use fresh seeds each year for best results. Hybrid seeds are bred by man's hands to create stronger, larger, more plentiful plants. If you are using heirloom seeds (original to the earth), then you can save the seeds from your plants, or even use ones that are left over from the previous year.
Prepare the soil by adding compost. It not only amends the soil, but adds important nutrients that will help the seedlings and plants grow healthy. Wait until the last frost has passed in your location, and the ground is warm and soft enough to work. Compost amends a soil that has too much clay, as well as one that has too much sand. Dig up the seeding area with your shovel. Break up all of the hard clods and remove all debris, such as rocks, roots and weeds. Layer 2 inches of compost on top of the worked soil and mix it in. Rake the area evenly.
Depth and Spacing
Read the seed packet to learn the manufacturer's suggestions for seed depth and spacing. Manufacturers have conducted many tests to find the best results for the particular seeds you are planting. Poke holes into the amended soil with a pencil, per the seed packet directions. The seed depth is usually two times the length measurement of the seed.
Seeding and Watering
Drop a seed into each of the holes, for as many plants as you wish to grow. Smooth the soil over the top of the holes, unless otherwise directed by the seed manufacturer. Lightly sprinkle the seed area with water. Check the soil each day, keeping it moist. Be gentle when you water, as it is easy to dislodge seeds if the sprinkling is too heavy. Soon you will see the sprout of the seed appear through the ground. This is called germination. Make sure you are planting the seeds in an appropriate location, per information on the seed packet. Some plants require full sun, while others do better in partial shade.