10 Basic Mistakes Made When Starting Seeds Indoors: Avoid These Mistakes for Successful Transplants!

These are the 10 most common mistakes people make when starting seeds indoors. In fact, I lost count so you get 12 mistakes. Keep this in mind when you start your seeds indoors and you will have better success!

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  1. Erick Hofmann on March 30, 2021 at 11:35 pm

    Seed starting for the very first time this year. I’m currently using a 50 watt "plant light bulb" that I believe is radiating blue light and is sitting 3 in. above my seedlings (tomatoes/peppers). I’m one week in and my tomato seedlings are roughly one inch and my peppers are just sprouting. Thank you for all of your videos they’ve been so helpful in my growing journey!

  2. Soror Tamori on March 30, 2021 at 11:36 pm

    This was so incredibly helpful, clear and to the point. Greatly appreciate the knowledge and painless presentation. I totally screwed my seedlings but now I know why in time to replant! Thank you!

  3. Mae Singer on March 30, 2021 at 11:36 pm

    What do I do if my light gets really hot? I can’t put it too close or else they wilt.

  4. Elisha Dcosta on March 30, 2021 at 11:38 pm

    If I place my seed tray in direct sunlight, will it affect the seeds germination process?

  5. Katie Taptto on March 30, 2021 at 11:39 pm

    I got stuck after the seedlings have grown a decent amount. Is that when I put them in the ground? Or do i put them in a bigger container, wait for them to grow more and then in the ground?

  6. ZemYaZa Healing Kor L.L.C on March 30, 2021 at 11:42 pm

    Good video

  7. Mad River Reefs on March 30, 2021 at 11:45 pm

    hate to break it to u lumens means 0 .PAR is whats important with lighting aka photosynthetic active radiation

  8. Curtis Bischof on March 30, 2021 at 11:45 pm

    Gary, once the seed sprouts in the dirt, how often should it be watered?

  9. The Household Chronicler on March 30, 2021 at 11:47 pm


  10. andreee123123 on March 30, 2021 at 11:48 pm

    Hello! Wonderful video, im very new to gardening and ive never grown from seed before; do this was really helpful. What should i do if I don’t have grow lights? Is it alright to just leave them out in the sun?
    It’s probably risky, but i just dont have the space or budget for the lights 🙁

  11. Mr Breece on March 30, 2021 at 11:48 pm

    You are a Godsend. Can’t type enough points to illustrate how much this video has just save our seeds / seedlings!!!!

  12. Ashish Tiwari on March 30, 2021 at 11:49 pm

    I have few questions to ask:
    1)Don’t we put the starting seed under darkness until the first leaves comes out?
    2)Once the first leaves come out, do we need to put liquid fertilizer or only water will suffice?
    Incase the liquid fertilizers are required, then what strength is needed?

  13. Hannaneh STM on March 30, 2021 at 11:53 pm

    Isn’t sun far above in garden so why put lamps close to seeds?

  14. Chelsea Pan on March 30, 2021 at 11:55 pm

    Thank you for your help. Tips are clearly explained. What can I do about the 50 deg soil temperature if I live in a country where the climate never gets lower than that?

  15. Patrick Meehan on March 30, 2021 at 11:55 pm

    Thank you for sharing your knowledge.

  16. White Bread on March 30, 2021 at 11:57 pm

    Very helpful

  17. Boxing guru on March 31, 2021 at 12:01 am

    This is very interesting I usually just put the seeds in the ground outside where I want then and they magically grow. No grow lights, no trays no hassle. I usually have a great grow season. Maybe because I live in California? At the end of my grow season I don’t till I cover the old plants with cardboard lay mulch over them and then replant in the spring. Most years my tomatoes self propagate by leaving a few tomatoes on the plants. This gardening thing seems more complicated than it really is. I focus on my soil and nature takes care of the rest. And I never use any type of store bought fertilizers my worms take care of that. It’s all about the soil!

  18. Alexander Hunt on March 31, 2021 at 12:01 am

    I have light in my Kitchen from sun do I need but grow light for my plant and the seed plant they went light before germin

  19. Tyricka Wilcox on March 31, 2021 at 12:05 am

    Newbie here ! 👋🏾 love your videos very informative. I haven’t planted anything yet I have the lights the mats labels. And soil but my question is , is seed starter necessary? I found some better homes and garden professional natural organic professional container mix great deal $1! But will it work or do I need to go back and get seeding mix specifically? Thanks for the channel! Have a great day

  20. Katie L on March 31, 2021 at 12:05 am

    I plug my lights into a timer so I don’t forget. 😊

  21. Sharon Tate on March 31, 2021 at 12:05 am

    I have a 2000 watt l.e.d. and if i put them anywhere near seedlings its gonna burn them so this advice and everyones advice to put the lights basically on top of your seedlings is horse shit. I have my light over 3 feet from all seedlings and they all came out perfect. No stretching. No long gangly plants.

  22. Vella Joseph on March 31, 2021 at 12:08 am

    Hey Gary , i tried to grow some lettuce with lights and they got leggy what could it be. they had a enough light .

  23. saltydog on March 31, 2021 at 12:08 am

    Gary… I love your channel. I’m starting seed for the first time. Something I’m confused about is light and germination. When starting seeds indoors you seem to advocate lights during germination, before seedlings. I’ve also read that seeds, during germination like warm, moist and dark or indirect light conditions. Can you help me understand?

  24. Joseph Kraus on March 31, 2021 at 12:08 am

    I learned the boiling water trick a couple of years ago while watching your videos. This year I got lazy and didn’t do it … and had a fungus gnat infestation while my partner and I were working from home because of the pandemic (bad timing!) Lesson learned the hard way, but thanks to your videos I immediately realized what I’d done wrong, and won’t make that mistake a 2nd time.

  25. Chase Patton on March 31, 2021 at 12:10 am

    Hey Gary,

    So I have some LED lights that are 5000 Kelvin and 18000 Lumens. For pepper plants with 3-5 sets of true leaves, how long would you leave those lights on and how far above the plants? I’ve been leaving them on for 16 hours a day, about 2 inches above the tallest plant. I’m having an issue with purple stems and full black leaves. I cant tell if its a light issue, or if i’m watering too much…

    Thanks for making all these helpful videos.


  26. Princess Angel on March 31, 2021 at 12:10 am

    Wow! Thank you for this. I’m taking notes what should I do to avoid all those mistake because I’m a beginner and I want to learn to plant my own veggies. Thank you

  27. Franco Stacy on March 31, 2021 at 12:17 am

    I thought germination doesnt need much light. I thought germination was the seed converting energy to form a sprout. The sprout needs a lot of light or becomes leggy before it starts forming leaves….so where is my misunderstanding?

  28. Cecil Brown on March 31, 2021 at 12:18 am

    Thank you Sir.

  29. WyldGyrl 0 on March 31, 2021 at 12:21 am

    Thank You! You’ve just saved my garden. I’ve not been using sterile seed mix, but been using old soil from prior years mixed with who knows what. 😳

    Now I know to also use hot hot water w/it. Wow, my garden is abt to take off. Thanks again.

  30. His humble servant on March 31, 2021 at 12:21 am

    I’d like to sincerely thank you for taking time out of your schedule to break things down for us.

  31. M. E. on March 31, 2021 at 12:21 am

    Completely novice gardener here – my very first time starting seed under grow lights indoors just a few days ago and boy do I wish I found this video first! I used seed starting mix (didn’t boil) and also mixed in a little worm castings as it was all I had on hand and thought (wrongfully) that it could benefit from it. I did sprinkle cinnamon on top of the cells in a last ditch effort to prevent gnats….but do you think I should scrap them all and start over correctly? Attempting to start Arugula, basil, cilantro, kale, & peppers. I may be in over my head.

  32. Gerard Ryan on March 31, 2021 at 12:22 am

    Sounds like Michael McKean….and very informative

  33. Mariana Munoz on March 31, 2021 at 12:22 am

    Ha! Don’t over love your kids… I mean plants!
    My grandpa (he’ll be 103 yrs old in May -no glasses, no walker & better memory than me!)… anyhow he’d always say, “don’t give your kids everything!
    Always keep them just a little cold & just a little hungry; otherwise you’ll just spoil them!

  34. Deborah Peck on March 31, 2021 at 12:23 am

    Do I absolutely need a grow light over my seeds or can I leave the container planted seeds outside in shaded light?..or do I need to cover them like a green house effect??ive done both,NOTHING happens..I’m in Southern California it’s very sunny here

  35. s andy on March 31, 2021 at 12:23 am

    i started too many of my plants at wrong time this 1st year. have learned a lot from your videos. thank you

  36. invisible bullet on March 31, 2021 at 12:24 am

    SOS guys I need your help, I had 3 cups with soil 5 days at windowsill and today my mother by accident fall them and a litle bit soil is went out not much like a spoon or more, do u thing it’s a big problem?

  37. Ashley's Allotment Diary on March 31, 2021 at 12:25 am

    Good information in your video, new subscriber, stay safe

  38. Reebert McJunk on March 31, 2021 at 12:27 am

    Finally, somebody that made it simple, God’s been growing the stuff for thousands of years and people want to make it so complicated it’s impossible to duplicate

  39. David Douglas on March 31, 2021 at 12:28 am

    You explain everything so simply but concisely that’s why I enjoy so much your channel. Thank you.

  40. guadalupe garcia on March 31, 2021 at 12:29 am

    Thank you for all the info. I followed all your steps for starting seeds. I already have some germination starting but I noticed my soil seems a little hard. It’s plenty moist. Just hard. What should I do? Or is it ok it’s like that?

  41. Gary Pilarchik on March 31, 2021 at 12:29 am

    I now have an Amazon Influencer’s Storefront. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. It is free to use and anything you buy may be eligible. Just use my… The Rusted Garden link at https://www.amazon.com/shop/garypilarchiktherustedgarden anytime you shop. I have garden items broken into categories.

  42. Brainwashing Detergent on March 31, 2021 at 12:30 am

    What is the water to soil ratio when adding the boiling water to the new soil?

  43. Per Shop on March 31, 2021 at 12:30 am

    Good info on when to water. I always worry about that because it doesn’t take much time for a healthy-looking seedling to get all withered up, if i didn’t water at the right time.

  44. john doe on March 31, 2021 at 12:31 am

    I don’t see any mention of heat mats. Are they necessary/helpful if your house is 65-68 degrees?

  45. Hyjacker LAMF on March 31, 2021 at 12:32 am

    No fan?

  46. Max Miller on March 31, 2021 at 12:33 am

    Your first point isn’t true. I’m no expert on the subject at hand but one thing my research has told me is that seeds need 3 things to germinate; water, oxygen, and proper temperature.

  47. Stephen Smyth on March 31, 2021 at 12:33 am

    Hi good video IV just started again and put my cracked started seeds in Coco perlite small pots ,and I placed them in my tent with my 300w mars hydro light IV put it far away mebe foot and a half ,can I burn them that close what would u tell me to do I’m beginner so learning and the tops of the 3 are poped out the Coco so want to do it good as possible in times like now growing is brillant thanks for Ur video

  48. One love on March 31, 2021 at 12:33 am

    Can I use 2 separate lights that is rated 5000k 3000 lumens? Instead one light with 6500k 3000 lumans?

  49. Reyalejandro's hunting on March 31, 2021 at 12:33 am

    Hey man. Nice video. I actually text u on instagram to see if u can help me with an issue with my pepper plants. 👍👍👍 please help

  50. David Molloy on March 31, 2021 at 12:35 am

    Hiya Gary, Thanks very much for your invaluable advice, I love your videos. I’ve just been on Amazon and I’m amazed and disgusted at how much some vendors are hiking up their garden products prices during this Covid 19 Virus. I’m in England, but I’m guessing that it will be the same everywhere. Thanks again and take care. David 😎🌞

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