As expensive as seeds are these days, I work on something fairly pragmatic and measurable. Seed spacing is usually specified on the packets. Some things I find better to start ahead of time and transplant, and that saves seed. For instance, I start all my cucumbers, squash and melons in seed trays, then transplant when they have two to four true leaves, taking care to disturb the roots as little as possible.
For beans and peas, I usually space them 2" apart and thin to 4 if needed, but since germination can be sporadic on first plantings, often it works itself out.
For small seeded things, such as radishes or beets or carrots, I find my push seeder spaces things well, reducing the need to thin. For baby lettuces and spinach and chard, I like to plant them in a broader row, 4" or so, and sprinkle them in so that they grow up fairly evenly, again, eliminating the step of thinning, which is time consuming and ends up with a lot of wasted seed.
Also, pelleted seeds makes it a lot easier to control how you plant. I do all my carrots and head lettuces that way. Carrots are direct seeded, and the lettuces are started in flats and transplanted. Same with cabbage family -- broccoli, kale, collards, cabbage, etc.
“The greatest fine art of the future will be the making of a comfortable living on a small piece of land...” - Abraham Lincoln
"Have patience with all things, but chiefly have patience with yourself.
Do not lose courage in considering your own imperfections, but instantly set about remedying them--every day begin the task anew."
- St. Francis de Sales
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