Make an Indoor Green House – Tomatoes

While we are out enjoying dinner and the Jazz Game tonight, I thought I’d share a bit about our tomato project. Apparently people had questions about why we were planting seeds here even though it just snowed. I guess I should have been clearer.

I hate to even try to pretend that I know what I’m doing when it comes to gardening – and yet, people asked me, so now I’ll explain…

We simply planted seeds in a make-shift greenhouse which will stay indoors until it is time to transplant them.

We always plant seeds around mid-March to early-April. I’ve done all kinds of things to keep the seeds covered – including the somewhat pricey “grow kits” you can get at practically any gardening center. You can see us using one of these kits last year. I was really bummed because our tomatoes were growing really well and we up and moved right before we would have started having our “harvest.”

This year I thought I was pretty clever. I bought two packets of tomato seeds (which Mackenzie picked out), a package of 12 peat pots that will decompose as the plants grow and also 2 single use foil baking pans that came with plastic lids. We simply filled the pots with seed starter dirt, put in the seeds, and watered. We then placed the peat pots inside the baking pans and covered with the plastic lids*. The lids keep moisture in and the metallic finish of the baking trays reflects and traps the heat – almost serving as a grow lamp because it maximizes the sunny weather. We placed the pans in the windowsill and the seeds sprouted quickly.

In one of our “pans” we are growing has Rainbow Heirloom Mix which is all large tomatoes in reds and yellows, the other has Best of Show Mix which has a combination of all colors and sizes.

Some photos from Burpee Seeds:

Rainbow Heirloom Mix and Best of Show Mix

Our whole planting experience came in under $10. If it all works out – that’s a bargain! And even if it doesn’t, the time we spent working on this project together was well worth it. I guess we shall see if my cleverness was really all that clever :)

I’ll keep you posted on our progress!

*Be sure to cut holes in the lids so the seeds get some air.


  • Jan

    What a clever idea! Can’t wait to see your recipes with all those tomatoes

  • You don’t say where you live, and that can make a BIG difference in how much scecuss you would have growing in a greenhouse in winter. I live in Minnesota, where of course it gets really cold and days are short. I worked in a hydroponic greenhouse here, and we grew only greens, lettuces, kale, the winter. Spring through fall we grew tomatoes, basil, peppers and other greens, but they just won’t grow in the winter, there isn’t enough light. It also costs a lot of money to heat a greenhouse in winter, so do your homework before you make a decision. I should say that you can add supplemental lighting to a greenhouse in winter, but again it is very expensive.

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