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Seed starting heat mat

 
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I have wanted a heat mat for seeds for while now, but didn't want to spend the money. This year I found one for 12.00, and decided to give it a try.  It really does make a difference.  I finally fixed my little greenhouse. So just for kicks I put half of the seeds I was starting in the greenhouse, and the other half on the seed mat.  Some of the seeds on the mat started popping through the soil in 5 days.  My little cucumber are about an inch high on the mat, and still haven't popped through the soil in the greenhouse.  Last year I didn't manage to get bell peppers to start at all, and on the mat they showed themselves in 5 days.  I'm glad I brought it.  It's fun to see everything grow.
 
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Thats a good price, could you let us know where you got it. and how large it is.

Thanks Phil
 
pollinator
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My sister has one and swears by it. Big difference!
 
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Hi Jen,
When do you hope to get your “seedlings” into your garden beds?
 
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Phil Grady wrote:Thats a good price, could you let us know where you got it. and how large it is.

Thanks Phil

From ebay, 12.00 free shipping
 
pollinator
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I've been using an electric blanket in a somewhat questionable setup the last few years and you're right, heating makes a huge difference! I upgraded to actual heat mats ($12 each) and temperature probe controllers this year (along with LED grow lights) and am looking forward to good results without juggling the settings on the overly large electric blanket.  
And on that subject, you know what's crazy? Broccoli and Cauliflower are known for being frost tolerant and the first thing to go into the garden... but still need warm soil to germinate properly! I guess in nature they would only be a fall crop. I started some brassica seeds on the new heat mats yesterday so we'll see how it goes.  
 
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Similar to Matt's electric blanket, we use our heating pad.  

I like that the heating pad can be dual purpose.  Start seeds with the heating pad in the spring and then we can use it on those sore muscles that we got from planting all those plants!
 
pollinator
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I love my seed starting mats as well. Huge difference. And they really aren't bad on power. I haven't checked the wattage individually, but I know by monitoring my solar output that it's not bad.
 
pollinator
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Thank you for sharing this info, Jen. Like you, I've been hesitant to invest the money into something I'm unsure about. Like others, I've used heating pads in the pad, but without any success. The heating pads these days by law are required to automatically shut off after two/three hours.

Did your Ebay heat mat come with a thermostat?
 
Jen Fulkerson
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I got mine on amazon it was the brand Met. It is 10" x 20".  It doesn't have a thermostat, it's supposed to be 80 degrees, and cost 12.99 with 0 shipping cost.
 
Stacie Kim
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Jen Fulkerson wrote:I got mine on amazon it was the brand Met. It is 10" x 20".  It doesn't have a thermostat, it's supposed to be 80 degrees, and cost 12.99 with 0 shipping cost.



Thank you for that info. I'll check it out! :-)
 
Jen Fulkerson
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I live in California zone 9b so some of what I started could be in the garden now, like swiss chard.  My warmer weather stuff could go into the ground in a couple of weeks.  I'm late in starting my seeds this year.  
My plants will have to wait.  I just finished fixing up my chicken yard and coop, today is the first day my chickens didn't have free  access to my yard and garden.  
My veggie garden is usually fenced, but I'm extending it.  The back of the fence has been removed.  I built one hugel beet, but have another to build.  Not to mention weeding the paths and adding wood chips.  Five of my old chickens don't go into the coop at night anymore. So they are still out. Nothing can be planted until I catch the rebel chickens and put them in the coop, or finnish my garden projects and put the fence back up.  I planted peas and covered them with cages and fencing, and the chickens still managed to get every pea  seedling, so not doing that again.
I hope to be done with my garden in two to three weeks.  Nice weather is coming, and I'm not ready. Oh well the seedlings will just get a bit bigger.  Happy planting Jen
 
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They really do make a big difference! I have two 48"X20"ish heat mats and they're great!

Fun fact, the medium sized ones can be used to brood chickens without  a heat lamp in moderate weather.

I start almost everything on heat mats these days. It makes such a big difference with the peppers especially.
 
pollinator
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 I have 2 cheap ones as well.  10x 20. They will let my pepper and tomato seeds pop up in 3-5 days.  I like to get an early start and I really don't heat my home unless it gets close to freezing for several days.
When I am not using it for seed starting, I will often use it to keep my wine making carboys fermenting in colder months.  I dont treat them very well but they seem to take a beating and just keep on working.
 
Jen Fulkerson
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We have a drafty old house that is always cold in the winter.  I was thinking I could use it to help bread rise.  I haven't tried it yet, but it's just the right temperature.
 
Jen Fulkerson
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So far the seed mate is germinating the seeds faster and better germination on everything except watermelon.  So far non of the watermelon has come up on the seed mat, but it did come up in the greenhouse.  I'm thinking it's because it is quite warm like in the hundreds, so maybe it needs a higher temp then 80.  Still glad I bought the mat.  
 
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Oooh, you're inspiring me! Seed heating mats are not available in India (the ones I found on amazon.in were actually imported from amazon.com and priced to reflect it). But I got some floor heating material that I haven't installed yet, so now I'm scheming how I could use it for a seed heating table. Hmmm, nice idea!
 
pollinator
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Jen Fulkerson wrote:We have a drafty old house that is always cold in the winter.  I was thinking I could use it to help bread rise.  I haven't tried it yet, but it's just the right temperature.



off side tangential, but i like to bake - often times i do the second rise in the oven, either pre heat it very quickly (like to 150 low setting then shut it off)
but usually...just the pilot brings it up that few degrees that makes a huge difference. this is crucial when i make cheese bread, or bread with stuff in it...cause the cheese is heavy and makes it harder to rise. bonus, no chance to destroy the rising...because its already in the oven, just turn it on...and no chance to bump it so it falls before getting in there...
 
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