What Comes First, the Root or the Stem?

Germinating seeds can be extremely fun and identifying parts can be very easy. I recently planted some herb seeds and saw a small white part growing.

This picture is from paradiseindisguise.com

I noticed that it was the root because when seeds germinate the root comes first to find water for the growing plant. As the plant grows, the shoot emerges. The shoot then photosynthesizes creating food for the plant.

This picture is from http://www.primarygames.com.

 

Seeds have three main parts: the seed coat, the embryo, and the food storage. The seed coat protects the seed for danger and falls off when the seed is in proper growing conditions. The embryo has one root system and another upward growing shoot. Cotyledons are ear shaped seed leafs. When a seed sprouts, cotyledons are the first leaf or leaves. Seeds can be either monocots, which have one cotyledon, or dicots, which have two cotyledons. Food storage includes endosperm, cotyledon, and perisperm.

 

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Project: Herb Garden

Before and after pics!

Before and after pics!

For the Spring, I have decided to start an herb garden! I wanted to grow Genovese Basil, Slow Bolt Cilantro, and Italian Flat Leaf Parsley. Using the baggy method, I planted the seeds on January 13th. On January 18th,the Slow Bolt Cilantro and Genovese Basil sprouted! I was so excited that I was able to germinate the herb seeds in five days! I can’t wait until the Italian Flat Leaf Parsley sprouts! I am keeping an eye on all the seeds and watching their growth!

5 Cheap and Easy Seed Starting Ideas

Hi everyone! Here are 5 great ideas to start your seeds! I am so excited for Spring! Happy planting!

1. Baggy Method

This picture is from http://www.robsplants.com.

The Baggy Method is one of my favorite method to start seeds. All you need is a paper towel and a plastic Ziploc Bag.

  1. Fold the paper towel into quarters and unfold.
  2. Place the seeds in a straight line on one of the four creases.
  3. Fold into quarters again.
  4. Wet the paper towel and place in the plastic Ziploc Bag.
  5. Leave the Ziploc Bag in a dark place.
  6. Check for sprouts and for consistent moisture.

In a few days, you have healthy sprouts ready to be transferred to the soil!

2. Toilet Paper Rolls

This picture is from gardentherapy.ca.

Using empty toilet paper rolls is a great idea! To fold the bottoms, cut 1/2 inch long strips on one side and fold one over another like a box. Fill in with dirt and seeds to get started!

3. Newspaper Pots

This picture is from hometalk.com.

Get newspaper and cut into thick strips. Roll around a small glass and fold the bottom. Tape to secure the bottoms and remove from glass. Fill with dirt and plant your seeds!

4. Egg Carton Planter

This picture is from growveg.com.

This method is extremely useful for planting lots of seeds. Always be careful not to overwater because over flooding the seeds is easy to do. Just punch a few holes at the bottom of each egg holder and fill with dirt! I recommend using biodegradable containers so that you don’t have to do as much work transferring the seedlings.

5. Ice Cube Trays

This picture is from idigmygarden.com.

For reusable seed starting, use plastic ice cube trays! Be sure to use a drill to make holes in the bottom.

Too Easy Chocolate Tuiles

Tuiles (pronounced tweel) are thin and crisp cookies that can be shaped into bowls, rolls, cones, or draped over rolling pins to form the traditional tuile shape. Tuile is the French word for tile.

Chocolate Tuiles

1 Cup of Confectioner’s Sugar

1/4 Cup of Cocoa Powder

3/4 Cup of Flour

8 Tablespoons (1 stick) Melted Butter

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.
  2. Grease 2 sheets or line them with parchment or silicone baking mat.
  3. In a bowl, whisk the egg whites till foamy.
  4. Add the flour, confectioner’s sugar, and cocoa powder to the egg whites and stir to combine. Scrape the sides of the bowl if necessary.
  5. Slowly add the melted butter and mix until just incorporated. The batter will be a very thick batter.
  6. Using a spoon or palette knife make 2-3 inch thin circles less than 1/8.
  7. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until firm and slightly darkened around the edges. While hot, transfer onto a rolling pin or shape into cones and bowls. The cookies are will cool and harden fast so work quickly!

Note: The thicker the tuile the chewier and more cake like texture the cookie will have. The thinner the tuile the crunchier the cookie will be.

Get Hooked On Crochet Hooks!

There are many types of crochet hooks in this world. B-K and 00-12. Not to mention plastic or metal crochet hooks. I have no idea why the makers of crochet hooks would begin with the letter “B” and not “A”. The bigger the crochet hook the larger the project will be. The “B” crochet hook is the smallest while the “K” crochet hook is the largest. While shopping for hooks, it makes you feel like a kid in a candy store. For Christmas, I couldn’t believe that I got this amazing crochet hook set. It had all the hooks that I could ever want!

Based on some research, the larger the hook you use determines mainly the size of your project. But hook size to me doesn’t influence my decisions. Sometimes, yarns will display the recommended hook size for you to use. See my other post, “Yarn!” , and read all about sizes and everything else.

In my opinion, one of the main differences between crochet hooks is not only the size, but whether or not its plastic or metal. I have metal hooks although I’ve never tried plastic ones. I’m sure it doesn’t affect the project in anyway, it’s just the preference of the crocheter. For example, some people like to use ice cream scoops while others like to just use spoons.

So. Let’s do a vote!

Rubber Band Bracelets: The Stretchiest New Trend

Hi everyone! Have you ever seen your friends wearing rubber band bracelets? Well, now you can make them inexpensively. First, you’ll need a Rainbow Loom to get started. Inside the box you’ll find a rubber band bracelet loom, rubber bands, and a hook. I personally like to organize my rubber bands. You can do this by stapling bags to create sections them organizing them by color.

 

Here’s the how-to for:

The Basic Rubber Band Bracelet

  1. Grab your loom and the colors that you want.
  2. Turn the loom so that the arrow is facing away from you.
  3. Begin placing the first rubber band on the arrow to an adjacent nub.
  4. Then, starting at where you placed the first rubber band, overlap the second color to the next nub.
  5. Be sure that the colors are overlapping one another. This is crucial for later steps.
  6. Continue looping using the same pattern.
  7. Finish to the end of the row.
  8. When your done, flip the loom so that the arrow is pointing toward you.
  9. Using your Rainbow Loom hook, skip the first rubber band and hook the color under it.
  10. Grab the rubber band (blue) and gently pull with the rubber band still on the hook.
  11. Loop it on the adjacent nub.
  12. Hook the color under the blue rubber band (in the diagram you would’ve hooked green)
  13. Gently grab and pull off the nub.
  14. Then hook it to the adjacent one.
  15. Repeat steps 12-14 till the end of the row. Careful, sometimes the rubber bands fall off the hook. To prevent this from happening, use your finger to assist the hook.
  16. Then take a C clip, and hook it on to the first rubber band with the arrow facing you.
  17. Now it is time to remove the bracelet. Pick up the C clip the the rubber band still hooked on and gently pull off the rubber bands.
  18. Continue to pull. Do not worry if the rubber bands come off in a weird way, since they are looped it’s fine. As you pull, you will begin to see the bracelet forming.
  19. Stop at the last loop.
  20. Hook the C clip on to the remaining loop and you’re done!

How Big Are We?

Check out this epic link that will blow your mind!

http://htwins.net/scale2/

How to: Make a Crochet Ball

Hi everyone! Sorry I haven’t been posting, I’ve been really busy. Well, here’s an awesome video tested by yours truly about making crochet balls! I was so excited when I made my first crochet ball and I’m sure you’ll be to!

Note: I do not own this video. Video credit: naztazia from YouTube.

Yarn!

Have you ever been to the yarn isle in a craft store? It is amazing! While walking through the yarn isle, I felt like a kid in a candy store or in this case a kid in a yarn isle. There were so many colors and sizes I felt as if I could stay there forever. Some yarns felt like soft felt while others felt like sandpaper. I ended up purchasing Red Heart Super Saver light blue and white yarn for a great deal. However, while walking through the isles I just couldn’t believe how expensive some are. I mean, $15.99 for one ball of yarn. Isn’t that a bit overpriced?

There are many types and specific sizes of yarn. The yarn chart begins with super fine then ends with super bulky. Yarns are also categorized based on the specific project done. For example, you most likely wouldn’t use super bulky yarn to make a baby sock.

On Red Heart Super Saver yarn, you can recognize the little yarn symbol that says “4”. It is identifiable on the chart and has the word “Worsted” on it.

Yarn Weight

So the next time you purchase yarn, remember to think about the weight and type for your next project!

Crochet Cramp?!

After crocheting for approximately two hours straight, my right hand began to hurt like crazy! I don’t know if crochet cramps exist, but they sure do hurt. It hurt in the knuckle and was extremely sore afterwards. Fortunately, my desire to finish my current project drove me through the agonizing pain. But I guess with all activities, you could get a cramp or be just plain sore from anything.

My solution was to crochet with less tension. Turns out I was holding it pretty tight. For me, whenever I do something I grip it as if I am holding on for my life. I don’t know why, but I just can’t relax or let go. Then again, it was my first time crocheting. So after adjusting the grip tension, I was able to crochet for another half hour or so without pain. :)