Top 5 Best Seed Starting Trays

best seed starting trays

Ready to start your own seeds at home? Finding the perfect seed starting tray can be overwhelming with so many options out there. That’s what I hand-picked the best seed starting trays on the market. To make the shopping just a little easier for you.

I’m not going to lie. I try to be cheap and conservative with my gardening. This last year I used saved yogurt containers to start my seeds, and it was a total pain in the butt. Trust me, it’s worth dropping $20 or so to get some real seed starting trays just for the simplicity of it. So I went on the search for the best seed starting trays to invest in for myself and thought I’d share my top picks with you too.

(Quick heads up that this post contains affiliate links, which means if you purchase something I recommend then I get a small commission at no extra cost to you!)

best seed starting trays

Overall Best Seed Starting Trays

Burpee Self-Watering Seed Starter Tray, 72 Cells

Whether you’re a beginner or seasoned gardener, these Burpee seed starting trays are a great choice.

One of the hardest parts of starting seeds is ensuring they are watered properly. Not enough water and they won’t germinate or grow properly, but too much and they can turn yellow and sickly. The self-watering feature of these trays takes the guess work out or watering.

Plus, this set includes 72 Burpee natural coconut fiber super growing pellets so you don’t even need to purchase seed starting soil mix.


Best Eco-Friendly Seed Starting Trays

Biodegradable Seed Starter Trays

If you want the ease of seed starter trays, but are trying to reduce your use of plastics then these are for you.

This pack includes 10 trays with 10 cells in each. So you can start a grand total of 100 plants in these! These are also a super affordable option at around $15, which definitely puts them on the list of best seed starting trays.

Plus, since these are biodegradable, you don’t even need to remove the seedlings from the pots in order to plant them in the ground! Just put the entire pot right into the ground.


Best Bang for Your Buck Seed Starting Trays

Gardzen 5-Set Garden Propagator Set, Seed Tray Kits with 200-Cel

Start 200 plants for less than $20 with this pack of the best seed starting trays to get the best bang for your buck. I debated on making this the top overall pick because you get just a lot of trays in this pack! I might actually end up choosing this one for myself.

They have a base tray for easy bottom watering plus lids to help keep in heat and humidity.


Best Grow Bags for Seed Starting

Augshy 400pcs Biodegradable Seed Nursery Bags

Ok technically these aren’t trays, but if you have a flat tray or even a pan to place these in, they are pretty cool for seed starting. I used these little grow bags once and they worked really well! My plants really thrived in them, and they are even biodegradable so you can just pop the plant bag and all into the ground. Plus you get 400 of them for less than $10! Pretty good deal, which is why I added them to this list of best seed starting trays.


Best Heat Mat and Seed Starting Tray Combo

2 Sets 72-Cell Seed Starter Kits with Heat Mats

Some seeds will pop up in cooler temps, but some really love some heat like peppers. The heat mat included in this kit will help those seeds germinate better. In my personal experience, my seedlings did better when I had a heat mat under them at least until they got to be a few inches high.

The seed trays look great too, but the heat mats are really what push this over the edge to make the list of best seed starting trays.


Are seedling trays good?

The best seed starting trays will make getting your plants off to a good start much simpler. I have tried using all kids of materials like recycled yogurt containers or Solo cups, but using actual seed starting trays makes the entire process much easier.

What is the best way to start seeds indoors?

It depends on where you want to start them. If you plan to start them somewhere that’s cool and dark, you’ll want to get not just seed starting trays but also heat mats and grow lights. You can get them in a kit like this one. Personally, I start mine right by a window that gets light most of the day in a room that stays fairly warm.

How deep should a seedling tray be?

Most seedling trays are about an inch to three inches deep. The don’t need to be too deep to start because you will probably be potting them up to a larger pot within weeks. If they are too deep though, it might be hard to keep the soil at the proper moisture, and you’ll just be using more dirt than you need which costs more money. The best seed starting trays should be a few inches deep at most.

How long can seedlings stay in trays?

How long a seedling can stay in the tray will depend on the type of plant and variety. Most will need to be moved to a larger pot within a couple of weeks.

How often should you water a seed tray?

Often enough to keep the soil moist. Simply feel the top of the soil with your finger and if it feels moist then it is fine, but if it starting to feel a little dry then it’s time to water them. Just don’t let them dry out completely, and don’t water so often the soil always feels wet. Seedlings are like Goldilocks, they like it juuuust right.

Starting seeds is so much and fun, and when you have the right tools it can be a lot easier. Any one of these best seed starting trays will get your garden off on the right foot. So just go with your fav and watch your seed babies grow!

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