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Paonia Farm and Home Supply, also known as Paonia’s do-it-yourself center, wants to show your project(s) with pictures to inspire our community to get started with their project.  Please come into the store and share your before, during, and after pictures of your projects, gardens, remodeling efforts, and farm animals.

Successful Seed Starting

Starting seeds indoors can be a fun and simple process and a great way to inspire children  to get involved in gardening.  This article is the first of a series of posts discussing how to start seeds indoors and outdoors, with emphasis starting vegetable, herbs, and flowers as well.   The information is adapted from Botanical Interests, a Colorado company dedicated to producing high quality heirloom seeds, and to inspiring and educating the gardener in you.  These seeds are in stock in the store right now.

Botanical Interests Seeds are in stock now!

Botanical Interests Seeds are in stock now!


A seed is the embryo of a plant. It is “naturally” enclosed in a protective coat.

Seeds respond to water, light (or absence of light), and temperature. Making good choices for soil and containers will help you grow a strong plant, which will thrive in your garden (inside or out), stay healthy and be productive.

We at Paonia Farm and Home offer Botanical Interests seeds, seed starting containers, high quality seed starting soils, artificial light sources designed to grow healthy rather than spindly plants, and other accessories to make your gardening efforts successful and satisfying.

A Mini Seed Starting Greenhouse

A Mini Seed Starting Greenhouse


You will find all kinds of sizes and shapes of ready-made seed-starting supplies in our store.

However, many ordinary household containers and disposables  can be re-purposed as a seed-starting container.

Containers should be clean.  Re-purposed containers must be sanitized to remove any possible pathogens. Soaking them in a 1:9 bleach:water solution offers one option.

Good drainage is essential to making the container effective.  The container of choice must have a way for excess water to drain away.

Seeds come in many different sizes and shapes

Also, If you will transplant your seedlings as single plants at a distance from each  other plant, then individual pots or divided trays will be the optimum choice. If you will plant your seedlings in clumps or close groupings, then a broad or wide, shallow container could also be suitable.

Other consideration in container choices will be the  seed size, the length of time from planting to transplanting, and the size of the resulting seedling.  Large seeds like beans or squash plants and quick-growing plants (i.e. tomatoes, lettuce, pumpkin) all denote the need for a larger initial container.


FoxFarmLight Warrior Seed Starter

FoxFarm Light Warrior Seed Starter

Use a high quality seed-starting mix such as FoxFarm, Light Warrior Seed Starting soil. Generally “you get what you pay for,” so don’t sacrifice quality. Outdoor soil ofter harbors microorganisms and pathogens that, when taken out of the balance of nature, can harm or kill your seeds.  Another choice would be to use high quality potting soil which promotes a moist, not soggy, environment with the ideal mix of air and water to promote germination.


Light is one of the most important factors to creating a healthy, strong seedling. Some seeds get the signal to germinate from light. Other seeds, usually larger ones, can have their germination inhibited by exposure to light. Your Botanical Interests seed packet will have any special seed sowing instructions you need to consider.

This improvised light fixture is adjustable as plants grow

This improvised light fixture is adjustable as plants grow

Sufficiently intense light of the right duration will make a shorter, stronger seedling rather than a taller more spindly plant. A light set-up can be as simple as four fluorescent tubes, two cool and two warm spectrum, hung no more than three inches from the top of your seedlings. A timer will help you consistently deliver 14 hours or more of light per day.


Generally, normal household temperatures are within the ideal range that encourages germination.  You can increase germination percentage and speed by gently applying heat to your soil by placing trays and pots near a heat vent, radiator, or other heat source or you can purchase a heat mat at the store designed to promote healthy seed germination and growth.


Since plants primarily consist of water,  water application becomes another essential factor in determining the overall health of your seedlings. Water signals to the seed that it is time to come out of dormancy, germinate, and grow.  Young plants are fragile so consistent moisture is vital. Hence seed starting success depends on you to create and maintain the right amount of moisture by watering gently and thoroughly.

Moisten the soil before sowing, especially for the tinier seeds and  maintain consistent moisture after the first watering, but never to the point of soggy soil. Soggy, saturated soil can create conditions that will rot your seeds before they germinate.  Some gardeners cover seed containers with plastic wrap, removing it after seedlings emerge. Sown seeds allowed to dry out may die.


Botanical Interests Indoor Seed Sowing Guide

Botanical Interests Indoor Seed Sowing Guide

The back and inside of the BOTANICAL INTEREST or other brand seed packets contain all the rest of the information you need to you plan your garden and start your seeds. Determine if the seed(s) you’ve chosen should be started indoors, and if so, when. By following the guidelines above and the seed starting chart you will be able to create a schedule for when to start your indoor seeds.  Visit the store for best selection of Botanical Interests seeds and all the information you need to get started today!

Paonia Farm and Home Organics Has Moved!


New Paonia Farm and Home Organics is in the old Vision Building at 208 Main Avenue

Are you looking for any of the following organic gardening items now in stock at Paonia Farm and Home Organics?

  • Seed Potatoes – arriving Mid-March
  • Compost Tea made on-site, NOW available Thursdays & Fridays in season
  • Air Stones, Pumps, & Compost Tea Ingredients
  • Horticultural Vinegar
  • Agricultural Molasses
  • Paonia Soil Company’s “The Bomb”
  • Smart Pots – multiple sizes from flower pot to raised bed size
  • Fox Farm Soils
  • Black Gold Soil Mix
  • Ancient Forest Humus Soil Amendment
  • Down-To-Earth Fertilizer Blends – Bio-Live, Acid Mix, Tree & Shrub Mix
  • Bat Guano 9-3-1
  • Seabird Guano 0-11-0
  • Fishbone Meal
  • Bone Meal
  • Azomite
  • Mycorrhizal Endo/Ecto Innoculant
  • Cal Mag
  • Earth Juice Products
  • Pest & Disease Control:  Azamax, Nolobait, Organocide, Dr. Doom, Serenade, Spinosad products
  • Backpack Sprayers
  • Soil Meters
  • Hanging drying racks

Store Location:

208 Main Avenue or Call at 527-4001!

Store Hours:

Monday through Saturday – Hours to be determined seasonally

Please visit or call us soon!

Homemade Snickers Bars

Homemade Snickers Bars

Homemade Snickers Bars

First – Make Bottom and Top Layers

1 – 10 oz pkg milk chocolate chips (or dark if preferred)

1/2- 10 oz pkg butterscotch chips

1/2 cup creamy peanut butter

Lightly grease a 9 X 13 X 2 pan. Melt together all ingredients and spread 1/2 of mixture onto bottom of pan. Refrigerate until cooled and set. Do not refrigerate remaining mixture, set aside.

Second Layer – make Filling Layer

1/4 cup butter

1 cup white sugar

1/4 cup evaporated milk

1 – 7 oz container marshmallow creme

1/4 cup creamy peanut butter

1 tsp vanilla extract

1 1/2 cup salted peanuts

Melt butter, sugar, and evaporated milk in heavy saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to boil, stirring constantly for five minutes. Remove from heat and add marshmallow creme, peanut butter and vanilla. Add peanuts. Spread over first layer and refrigerate until set.

Third Layer- make caramel Layerhomemadesnickers

1 – 14 oz pkg of caramels

1/4 cup whipping cream

Melt caramels and whipping cream together until smooth and creamy. Pour over filling and refrigerate until set.

Fourth Layer

Pour remaining melted peanut butter, butterscotch, and chocolate mixture from Step One over caramel layer. Refrigerate at least one hour and cut into squares. Store in refrigerator or freezer.

Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake


My family loves pumpkin cheesecake more than the traditional pie.  It' a tradition.

My family loves pumpkin pie spices in cheesecake more than the traditional pie. It’ a tradition!


1 3/4 cups graham cracker crumbs
3 tablespoons light brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 stick melted salted butter


3 (8-ounce) packages cream cheese, at room temperature
1 (15-ounce) can pureed pumpkin
3 eggs plus 1 egg yolk
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
2 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.
For crust:
In medium bowl, combine crumbs, sugar and cinnamon. Add melted butter. Press down flat into a 9-inch springform pan. Set aside.

For filling:

Beat cream cheese until smooth. Add pumpkin puree, eggs, egg yolk, sour cream, sugar and the spices. Add flour and vanilla. Beat together until well combined.  Pour into crust. Spread out evenly and place in oven for 1 hour. Remove from the oven and let sit for 15 minutes. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours.



Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner Menu/with Recipe Links

The crunchy nut topping adds texture and flavor

The crunchy nut topping adds texture and flavor.  The sweet flavor makes this a great side dish. This is another easy do-ahead recipe.  Just heat for about 30 minutes before serving.

6 Medium sweet potatoes (about 3 lbs) (often labeled yams in the grocery store)
3 TBS butter
¾ cup sugar
3 TBS Grand Marnier, orange liquor, or orange extract
1 tsp grated orange rind, (optional)
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp ground nutmeg
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 (14oz) can sweetened condensed milk
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
1-cup pecans, chopped
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup butter
¼ tsp ground nutmeg

Cook potatoes in boiling water to cover, 30-40 minutes or until tender; drain. Let cool slightly. Peel potatoes and place in a large bowl. Add 3 TBS butter and mash. Add ¾ cup sugar and next 6 ingredients; mash again or beat on medium speed with electric mixer until smooth. Spoon into a lightly greased 2-quart casserole.

Combine brown sugar and remaining 4 ingredients; sprinkle over sweet potato mixture. Bake, uncovered at 425 degrees for 30 minutes or until thoroughly heated, shielding with aluminum foil after 20 minutes to prevent excessive browning.

Do Ahead Tip:

Sweet potato mixture can be made the night before – spoon into the greased casserole. Remove from refrigerator 30 minutes before baking; add brown sugar topping. Bake as directed above.

Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner Menu with Recipe Links