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I start all my tomatoes from seed. For the last 45 years the majority of my Garden fruits and vegetables always come from seeds that I start. I occasionally get lazy and go to a reliable source for organic starts. But I get great pleasure from planting the seeds and bringing them along through fruition.

So I thought I'd share with you a few tomato tips , because they seem to be the most sought-after garden fare.

Always start with a reliable seed source. I avoid store bought seeds and opt for online sources. There are so many great labels to shop, and they have a wide variety of sizes, shapes flavors and disease and virus resistant seeds.

Another consideration is soil. In a pinch I use my garden soil , but it's always a good thing to start with conditioned soil that is pest , disease and weed free. They are a little more expensive but well worth it in the end.

Next , container choices. I reuse those pesky 4 and 6 packs discarded by neighbors. They are good for one use and are generally safe. I also use my small plastics like yogurt cups. Solo cups are also good and can be reused next season and are easy to store.

When using those store trays, often your plant isn't big enough to be put in the ground by the time it out grows the tray. That's one reason I like the Solo Cup so well. When I start seeds in the Solo Cup, I only put soil in half of the cup. When the little Sprout comes up and gets its true leaves on the stem, and becomes more sturdy, then I can add a little more soil and continue to do so as the plant grows until I fill the cup. By the time the cup is full the tomato has a fantastic root ball and is really ready to be put in the ground.

Just because your plant is in a container doesn't mean it is safe from cutworms and other pests. One of my favorite deterrents for cutworms, is crushed eggshells. They are typically organic, and the sharp edges of a crushed eggshell will cut any soft-bodied pest, including cut worms and slugs. Thus protecting your plant until it gets a hardy stalk.

Below is a pictorial this year's tomato and pepper starts.

The first picture, shows one of my plants start ready to have soil added to the cup.

The second picture reflects that I have filled the cup with soil to the top.

The third and 4th picture shows the crushed egg shell around the tiny starts.
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