Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Seed Starting ebook REVIEW

I have a love hate relationship with starting seeds.  I hate having to follow steps and rules, but I love having the satisfaction of knowing I did it all on my own and those plants are growing because I did the planning ahead, the nurturing, the preparation for the "perfect" garden. 

I recently had the chance to review the e-book Seed Starting The First Step to Gardening by Gary Emmett.  It can be found on Amazon.com for $2.99 or for Prime members, it can be loaned for free.  Seed Starting can be found here.  While I am not new to gardening or seed starting, I am always aware that there is new information that comes out all the time and that methods change, information gets updated, and my techniques and plans could always use improvement. 

This book is a very short read, with details that should be able to be understood by the most inexperienced gardeners.  Mr. Emmett has taken the process and broken it down to bite size steps, and addressed several common problems for those starting their own seeds.  He shares links to some reputable seed sources, discusses lighting needs in thorough detail, and even clearly explains the differences in the various seed starting soils and additives available to gardeners.  His education and work experience, combined with personal experience show through in his various explanations.  The no frills, no fluff content made it easy to see that this book was written by someone who not only writes about what he is teaching, but uses the information for himself.  His mention of starting seeds and using old cookie sheets for trays won me over instantly, showing that the author is not focused on formalities and sales, but on making your garden your own and taking pride in those seeds.

When I first got the chance to review this book, I wasn't sure how much I could really learn from it.  It seemed very basic, and probably self explanatory for someone who has had years of experience.  I was pleasantly surprised that I could still learn a number of things from this book.  I had never seen a clear, detailed explanation of the different types of soils and their possible additives in this format. I had also never heard the explanation of the different sizes of starting tray inserts.  I really appreciated how the lighting needs and options were so thoroughly addressed as well.  It was nice to be able to give myself a bit of a check up on my methods and see where I can improve and what I am already doing the best that I can.  I have already recommended this ebook to several of my friends who are just getting their fingernails dirty for the first time. 

I would love to see more work from this author in the future, especially if he is able to address things for the gardeners with a bit of experience or even a "DIY" attitude.  He really didn't touch on things like starting seeds in home made pots from newspaper or the like, but I really think that is beyond the beginner level anyway.   With the viral nature of social media, there are hundreds of gardening tips and ideas, and I believe Mr. Emmett's background and personal experience could help the average gardener make the most of what they have around them and harness the best ideas for their own situation.


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