Plant seeds directly outdoors in the ground, after the last frost of your location. To give your seeds a head start, however, start them indoors several weeks before the last frost. Flowers will bloom sooner and vegetables will come to harvest more quickly. This form of planting seeds is especially helpful in those areas with colder temperatures and shorter growing seasons.
Start your seeds in commercial seed trays, peat pots or even reused plastic food containers. If you decide to reuse food containers, be sure they are thoroughly washed with soap and water before planting.
Fill the containers with a commercial potting soil, but leave a ½ inch space clear at the top. Potting soil from the garden center or nursery is excellent for starting seeds, as it contains no plant diseases, fungus or weed seeds.
Mist the soil with the water bottle. Stir the soil with your pencil, to distribute the moisture. Do not over-wet the soil, creating mud.
Read the back of the seed packet. Different plant seeds must be planted in different lengths of holes. Make a hole in the center of the container soil for the recommended length. Place a seed in the hole. Cover the hole with soil.
Place all of the seeded containers onto a tray. Cover the tray with a sheet of plastic wrap. Do not seal the plastic around the tray, as air flow is still needed. The light layer of plastic will assure the seeds are kept warm and moist, which is required for germination.
Put the tray near a window that gets six or more hours of sunshine a day. Check the soil for dryness, daily. Spray water on the soil if it appears dry. Take off the plastic wrap as soon as you notice germination (sprouting). Continue to spray water on the soil as it dries.
Transplant the seedlings, outdoors or in larger containers, when they are 3 to 5 inches tall.