Posted: 08/06/2016 at 09:25
Hello Claire, I grow all my plants out of those mini greenhouses and home made seedhouses/frames. I'm off the same mind as you, I get loads of satisfaction and enjoyment from growing my own.
Summer bedding plants are generally not hardy so die off in our cold winters. There's always exceptions to the rule so some people over winter those smelly geraniums successfully in unheated greenhouses.
As phillipa suggests a good place to start would be to get your head around annuals, biennuals and then perennials.
I've just sown some biennuals, honesty and wallflowers. I've sown them now and when they are big enough I will plant them out and then they will flower April/ May next year. Forget me nots are these as well, I've found once you've got them they will happily self seed all over the place Foxgloves are another example of biennuals and good self seeders.
I've also got some perennials on the go that I sowned in March, these seem to take longer to germinate and sometimes particular seeds like particular conditions to get going.
Knowledge is just trial and error and learning your plants as you go Try and sow thinly, as given the right condtions I'm still amazed at how many plants you can get out of a packet of seed. If you do go for the plastic mini greenhouses, make sure they are secure they have a tendancy to fly off!