I have a lot of seeds left from last year so no need to buy any more yet, and I enjoyed picking through and seeing what I could start off now. We have quite a mild climate here, mostly it is safer to wait until the soil is a little warmer before planting in the garden, however most veggies can be started off in pots now ready for planting out in 4-6 weeks. (Its only 9 days until Spring officially starts anyway!)
I prefer to grow from seed than buying seedlings for a few reasons - it is definitely more economical to grow from seed, depending on what you buy and the company you can often get 200 seeds or more in a packet costing around $3, whereas a punnet of just 6 seedlings of most things will cost around $4. Even factoring in a few failures you are still way ahead with seeds. Also you can choose non-hybrid, non-genetically modified, open pollinated and organic seed much more easily than finding seedlings of the same. By growing these types of food, you can then save your own seed if you wish for the next year, with a much greater chance of growing true-to-type plants. These types of seeds are also more disease resistant, hardier, produce over longer seasons, have more nutritional value and are tastier !!! (Have I convinced you to try yet??!!)
Some good online companies I have seeds from currently are --- The Lost Seed, Cornucopia Seeds, Green Patch Seeds and Diggers (Check out their websites by clicking on my links.) I have found The Lost Seed (based in Tassie) to be most generous and have loads of helpful info on their packaging including germination info and seed saving tips (do you know any other industry that tells you how to NOT buy their product again??!!!!)
I also have a few odd packets from swaps I have done with other seed-savers, and some seeds I saved myself from last year.
I use commercial seed-raising mix, and whatever I have for containers. The best I found (from many experiments last year!) are the containers from strawberries/alfalfa/cherry tomatoes etc, they already have the drainage holes and have their own little lid, which is handy until the seeds germinate.
So today I planted -----
Bush Beans -Cherokee Wax
Climbing Beans - Purple King
Climbing Beans - Blue Lake
Broad Beans (only 2 left from last year)
Vegetable Spaghetti/Squash (never tried it, but looks interesting!)
Butternut Pumpkin -Waltham
Watermelon - Moon and Stars
Beetroot - Rainbow Mix
Tomato - Grosse Lisse (full size)
Tomato - Tommy Toe (cherry size)
Cape Gooseberry - Golden Nugget
I have some more to plant but ran out of time today, lots of lettuce varieties and some more herbs, but will do that another time .... they will go direct into the soil.
So hopefully in a few weeks I will have a whole load of seedlings ready for planting into warm soil. Until then I will keep them covered on my back deck, and for the containers that don't have lids I will show you my incredible germination greenhouse-system ......
Works well to keep heat in without drying the soil out, with a few little breathe-holes. (If you use these, remember to take the pots out when the plants germinate or they can rot).
I always like to know what others are growing, and what works for you, so let me know!