How to “starch” plants in the spring

This spring, many of you are growing the seedlings yourself. This is a fairly simple process that requires only minimal equipment.

In a few weeks, you can grow the seedlings to a size suitable for planting in a garden, container or seedbed. Before moving young, young seedlings into the garden, they must first be hardened or accustomed to outside temperatures, sunlight, wind, and other environmental factors.

Plants taken directly into the garden from a controlled environment are most often scorched by sunlight and wind and are either killed or severely depleted.

More from Andy Rideout: Are you looking for a New Year’s resolution? Try gardening.

The hardening process, also called “hardening off,” turns tender and succulent plants into hardy, stronger-stemmed and leafy plants that are resistant to wind and sunlight.

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