Starting seeds indoors is fun and economical. Gardeners need seeds, cell trays, starting medium (some cells come filled), plant heating pads, a spray bottle and a grow light. Start seeds in small, individual containers with a single seedling per container. Always follow seed packet or catalog instructions, as each species has its own needs.
Grow the plants away from extreme cold, drafts or heat. If the temperature is above 60 degrees, the plants will be fine if using plant heating pads underneath. (A grow light is recommended for best results, but it is not necessary.)
Keep the potting mix moist during germination using a spray bottle. Drain off any excess water for best root health. If plants outgrow a cell, transplant them carefully to peat or paper cup. Never pick up a seedling by its top or stem.
About two weeks before planting outdoors, start hardening off the seedlings by moving them outside for increasingly longer periods each day. Start by putting them outside for a few hours in the shade during the afternoon, gradually exposing them to more sun. Bring them inside each night. In two weeks, if there are no more freezing temperatures, the plants can stay outdoors until planted in the garden.
Have fun, be consistent with care and you will be rewarded with healthy plants!
Find more information at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum website.