Saturday, April 16, 2011

Starting Indoors

If I remember correctly, I got a bit of a late start on planting seeds to start indoors last year. St. Patrick's Day is my goal, and this year I again missed it. But only by a week! I planted tomatoes, sweet and hot peppers, spinach, arugula, and a number of herbs. Maybe something else too. Outside, the onions from last year are in the ground (they overwintered in order to get a head start this year). I'll plant more directly into the beds soon - and if the ones that overwintered end up growing nice and big and are a success story, I'll leave most of the "new" onions there overwinter and have that be my onion strategy. The ones I dug up at the end of fall (planted from seed in the spring) were all smaller than golf balls.. most were the size of marbles.

I still have plenty of vegetable seeds that need to be planted. Some I'll plant directly into the beds once it's a bit closer to June - such as carrots (mine did really well last year doing this) and green onions (which overwintered successfully all on their own, despite being feasted on by rabbits). Also cucumbers (did great!), summer squash (again, great!) and pumpkins (not great, but not bad either).

I'll admit: I am behind. I feel like I'm further behind than I probably am in reality. Okay, except for the peas & beans - I haven't started those seeds yet, so the spring crop might be doomed. Thankfully, they can handle the warmer days if they have some shade, and will produce an okay fall crop. Last year my peas & beans were spindley sprouts anyways, which caused them to be non-prolific (especially the peas). Great for snacking though! Ack, I forgot the beets too! Those will be new this year. (Maybe - if I ever get them started)

Here are some sprouts! I think this is spinach/arugula...
Happy planting! I'm going to try to catch up this weekend on the seeds that have tragically been left behind thus far. The school I teach at is insane this time of the year (okay, *all* times of the school year). This whole teaching gig sure does make it difficult to keep up with the better parts of life! I don't have any free time to enjoy the outdoors and get things done around the house/garden, save for the rare (& delightful) hour or two on weekend days.

OH!  The strawberry plants overwintered fabulously and currently look quite nice. But the snow (sNOw?! blech.) was just starting to come down too, so I don't know if they'll still look nice in the morning. I covered them with some nearby straw, but I don't know if that's enough to keep the leaves safe. We'll see! It's all a great big scientific experiment, if scientific experiments had a tendency towards awful, neglected record-keeping. I promise (myself) I'll be better about this next year! And this year too, especially in the bustle of the harvest/canning/freezing season.

One more thing, I need to read up on grapes, raspberries, and blueberries. What temps they can handle, how to prune (yes, I know, prune in the fall. too late for that now!), etc.

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