Monday, March 31, 2014

Repotting seedlings

Never done this before, but because we are going to be away for a little while, and they were mostly all bumping up against the plastic cover of the starter thing, I bought small peat cups and organic dirt and repotted the seedlings that had come up so they have room to grow.

A Rutgers hybrid tomato
(I filled each to the top with more dirt, not shown in this picture.) Sadly I accidentally broke the stem of one of our only three Brussels sprouts seedlings, so I had to start a couple more B.s. seeds. Also we are still waiting for two artichoke seedlings to germinate, and one more of the heirloom tomatoes.

I put them in two plastic containers so I can saturate the roots with water.

In the back are Rutgers hybrid tomatoes, heirloom tomatoes, and Brussels sprouts; in front are peppers.

You can sort of see that each has about a half an inch of water in the bottom of the container. My hope is the water will continually soak up through the peat and the dirt, and the seedlings will root down to get it. I don't know if this is going to keep them alive and thriving while we are away, but I am optimistic.

A few years ago we started our seedlings in these peat pots (maybe not the same brand). They all claim you can just put the seedling in its peat pot directly into the soil and it'll go to town. My sense was the roots never were able to push through the pots and all our plants were rootbound, though Adam disagrees with me; at the end of the growing season I found intact peat pots scattered all throughout the garden soil. This time, my plan with these is to cut the pots off before transplanting into the garden, and throw them into the composter.

Saturday, March 29, 2014

A Few Interesting Links

How to grow kale, on A Way to Garden

Stuff to do while we wait until it's warm enough actually to plant: Revisiting, revising, and editing those lists via Growing with plants

Thar be dragons: San Francisco Flower & Garden Show on Gardening gone wild

Tips for spring planting, on Northwest Edible Life

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

Initial notes about our gardening plan

Sow outside (sowing date)

Arugula (Mar 18)
Beans (purple variety to improve harvestability) (Apr 15)
Beets - Golden (Apr 1)
Beets - Red (Apr 1)
Carrots (Mar 25 - Apr 1)
Cauliflower (Apr 1)
Chinese Mustard (companion to Cauliflower) (Mar 18 - Apr 1)
Corn salad (mache) (Mar 18 - Apr 1)
Kale (not sure, but I'm guessing Apr 1 like cauliflower)
Lettuce (Mar 18 - Apr 1)
Parsley (inside - Apr 1)
Pumpkin - Lady Godiva (Pepitas) (Apr 22-29)
Squash - Jack Be Little

Start inside (start date / transplant date)

Artichokes (?)
Peppers - Pimiento de Padron (Feb 25-Mar 18 / Apr 22-29)
Tomatoes - Adam's source (Feb 25-Mar 18 / Apr 22-29)
Tomatoes - heirloom ones CDR sent me (Feb 25-Mar 18 / Apr 22-29)

We didn't need to buy many seeds this year, as we have lots left over from last year. Here is what we bought:
  • artichokes - Violetto di Romagna Artichoke (here)
  • beans - Purple Queen Bush Beans (here)
  • red beets - Pronto Beet (here)
  • chinese mustard (here)
  • kale - Russian Red (here)
  • rutgers tomatoes - sent off order w/check via snail mail - order form is here (PDF) and it might not be too late
  • seed starting kits (here) - because they have small (10-cell) kits. we don't need many cells this year.