I had a very productive weekend setting up a seed starting area with grow lights and actually getting some seeds in! Yipee - finally! After much research and haggling with people over shelves on Craigslist, I decided to venture out and see what I could find at different stores.
My plans were based off of the information found HERE.
The metal shelves at Home Depot and Lowe's were pretty pricy @ $75+ and no one had quite what I needed on Craigslist. I went by Walmart this AM (hey, I'm on a budget!) just to do some price comparisons and found the perfect size shelves, metal, for $59. That price wasn't too shabby compared to what I'd seen elsewhere and the quality seemed comparable. I also checked out their shop lights and found them to be much cheaper than those at the big hardware stores. All in all, I purchased the shelves for $59, 2 shop light sets for $14 each and then a 10-pack of T8 32 watt, full-spectrum bulbs from Home Depot for $35. My intention is to buy a few more shop light holders over the next week (the reason for a 10-pack of bulbs).
So, here it all is:
Shelves - $59
Shop lights - $14 each
Bulbs - $34 for 10-pack
Although I'm going to try a few different seed starting techniques, today I went with the old tried and true Jiffy peat pellets. I'll venture out to try different forms of seed starting soon.
For now, I just used a plastic heavy-duty garbage bag with paper clips as a "tray" for the seeds to sit on. I'll deal with finding something more convenient later, but this seems to be doing the trick so far and I'm hoping the black helps to absorb some heat from the lights.
I'm pretty excited - we've got some more seeds to start over the next few days and then a few veggies that will just be sown straight outside once our beds our done. The plan is to start on those next weekend.