Are Seedling Heat Mats Worth It for Maine Gardeners?

You'll find dozens of online articles telling you in the cheeriest tone possible to start an indoor herb garden, but you have to go to Aubuchon Hardware to learn the real story. Now I don't know what to do: Should I buy a seedling mat, or will my plants will grow from seed indoors without one?

The experienced gardener at Aubuchon in Belfast said buying a heat mat is the secret to keeping indoor seedlings happy during the Maine winter. She said it really helps the roots develop, while the above-ground portion of the plant won't necessarily grow as much. As an aside, the main customer buying seedling heat mats is usually someone growing indoor marijuana.

But I just want to start an indoor herb garden... and then grow my plant starts in March or April. Seedling heat mats come in all sizes and wattages, but they aren't cheap. Any gardeners out there with personal experience with seedling heat mats? We keep our house between 68 and 58 degrees, and we live in hardiness zone 5b. The plants would sit in a south-facing window with lots of sun (at least when the sun's up during these short Maine winter days).


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