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Start Plants from Seed and Free Seed Program

Now is a good time to start planning your vegetable and flower gardens. Once you know what you want to grow this spring and summer, you can begin to think about which vegetables or flowers you might want to start from seed indoors. When to plant the seeds indoor will be determined by the plant and the last frost date. The back of the seed packet will contain information about days to germination and harvest, optimal soil temperature for germination, seed spacing, and number of weeks before the last frost to start indoors. Much of NH is in Zone 5 and the last frost is typically in late May, so planting the tender young plants outside after Memorial Day is a good rule of thumb. New Hampshire Master Gardeners Association offers free seeds to eligible educational groups, including schools, 4-H clubs, youth groups and individuals conducting education. Orders are being accepted now through April 15, while supplies last. Seeds from this program are donated by vendors and are past their sell date. Most seeds are viable for several years past their sell date. You can conduct a germination test to get an accurate germination rate so you know how many seeds to plant. Performing germination tests is a great learning experience for students, too.


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