Monday, April 10, 2017

Seeds started

Garden update for 2017.

Beds from last year have been turned and weeded.  Carrots, peas, lettuce and spinach are up.  No sign of early potatoes yet.  Garlic looks good but no scapes yet.  Need weeding.

Blueberries (which are actually whortleberries, I think) and strawberries are flowering.  Rhubarb starts and sage and parsely OK.  Direct sowed some sweet peas for color and cutting, plus polinators.

No sign of the parsnips yet.  Started on the end of the potato bed thinking I´d put the tomatoes there.
I´ve a bit of a dilemma regarding the potatoes.  Can´t find seed potatoes except in 25k sacks, which seems rather a lot.  Could buy some that don´t look sprayed from the grocery store, but they tend to have mysterious black spots when peeled which gives me pause.  Am seriously considering not planting potatoes and using the already dug bed for something else.

Added to the seed potato shortage, we´re having mid 80s and no rain for most of April.  The direct opposite of last year.  I´ve started watering regularly. Perhaps I should consider buying potatoes and using the bed for more tomatoes, peppers, beans and squash.

Speaking of which, they are also MIA.  But germination conditions couldn´t be better, sunny and warm.  I´ve been schlepping them out to the patio every morning and bringing them in every evening.  Some of the seed is pretty old now, and I don´t have freezer space to keep them well, so fingers crossed.  If I have no luck with germination, I can still buy starts at the farmers market or the ag cooperative, but they won´t be either special or heritage/open pollinated.


  1. You need consistently high soil temperatures for squash germination, 70 to 90 degrees F. I use a heated propagator which we bought with us from the UK, it gets plenty of use with the tomato and pepper seedlings as well so it is worth getting one. Def worth trying without though, could you rig up an insulated cold frame perhaps? - Nicky

  2. Oddly enough, the squash is the first to appear. Not much else, though, a single tomato and a single sweet pea. Crossing my fingers for the japanese indigo, if only to get some fresh seed for next year.

    Last year nothing ever got true leaves, so we´ll see if an earlier start helps.

    What on earth did people do before hoop houses and heat mats?

  3. BTW - how´s the finger? Hope you´re on the mend!!

    1. Thanks for asking, finger still splinted, redressed at the Drs every two days. My daughter is here to help until Saturday and then I am on my own for the rest of the month. Eventually Tim and I will be together for more than a fortnight, I wonder if our marriage will cope with the strain!

  4. Hi, Coco!

    My goodness - you have already done so much! Your April sounds like our April this year. Nice to have so many rain-free days to work in, but it is looking rather parched where we haven't watered.


  5. Hi Coco,

    The raised garden beds are looking great and are excellent insurance against a sudden deluge of rain. Have you had a chance to work in any manure? I'll be very interested to read about your experience with parsnips as I have had enormous amounts of problems trying to get them started here. Hope the rhubarb crowns grow strongly as those plants are real givers (and can be roughly divided up in future years). Seed for all sorts of plants can be viable for many years depending on the variety of plant so you never know. I picked a ripe cantaloupe today and it was mid sized and superb tasting (plus I saved the seeds for next summer). Yum!


  6. Hi Pam,

    Everyone is thrilled that the place is packed with tourists for Semana Santa, but the dairy farmers are already starting to worry about forage. On the other hand, apparently corn planting is a month early. Supposed to rain again next week.

    Hi Chris,

    I´m on the last of the manure, need to get some more. It grows excellent grass, which is coming up in the flower beds. In the veggie beds, it´s laid pretty deep. Cantaloupe are on the list for his year, if I can find a spot. Yum!