I put them in a seed tray in individual pods on my dining room table in front of the patio door/window. To harden off I put them out side during the good sunny days for a week or two then try to transplant. All shrivel up and die. They are not very big though. Maybe a month of growth in all. I am shooting for actual plants to transplant this year instead of the smaller things I get. So I will need many months of growth for that I am thinking. We plan for the first week of June to get in the soils around here. Sometimes sooner, sometimes later.
yes 6-8+ weeks vs 3-4 will make a huge difference in plant size.
Here are a few things that I do that may or may not be something you want to try
1)try to find a good liquid fertilizer (organic if you so desire) and use a weak solution of that once they are 3-4 weeks old.
2) If you think you need more light and have an extra desk lamp or something like that, go to the store and get a CFL bulk in 6500K to shine on them 16 hours a day. Lights should be within a few inches of the plants to prevent them from getting leggy
3) if you use a plastic dome, that should come off once they are all up and established to prevent damping off or mold issues.
4) if you have a small fan you can set it up to gently blow across your plants a couple days a week (i use an old 12 volt computer fan) this will help make the stalks stronger
5) if you use a heat/seedling mat, turn it off once the plants are all out of the dirt, again this can cause them to be leggy if left on.
anyone else have any tips? I've had good luck with seedlings in the past, but am always looking to learn new things