Cheap Seed Starter

Rather than buy a heat mat, I wanted to build something instead.  My first plan was to build a wooden box and insulate it, but then I ran across this styrofoam cooler.  I built a little shelf out of scrap plywood, with a 25w lightbulb mounted near the center.  The only thing I didn’t have on hand was the cord plug.  I’ll put my pots on the wood shelf, then cover the top with the lid, or maybe some plastic.

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2 Responses to Cheap Seed Starter

  1. Brian says:

    The 25W bulb is too much heat! I’ve had the lid sitting on top, slid to one side so that there is a 1″ gap of air, and the soil temperature is 105 degrees F. (outside air is 40 to 50 degrees F) I think I might have just cooked my seeds.

  2. Brian says:

    Installed a 11W bulb, placed lid on top, elevated about 1″ above rim of cooler. The soil temperature at the bottom of the pots was about 88 degrees F, and 78 degrees F near the top. I also ordered a line voltage thermostat (baseboard heater thermostat) to play with later.

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