Sunday, March 6, 2016

Planting Journal

Whether or not anyone reads my blog, it is most useful to me as a planting journal. Keeping a record of when you plant, temperatures, and how long it takes seedlings to sprout is a helpful strategy in a gardener's toolkit.

I did a good deal of planting in the greenhouse this weekend, trying to get caught up. As I was labeling, I noticed in my collection of past labels a handwritten list from last year of when I should plant lists of seeds. At the top, I had written, "Plant everything two weeks earlier." If only I had included that in my blog, I might have read it before it was too late. Thus, I planted most things later than last year, but I did manage to plant my tomatoes and peppers a week earlier. My purple light glows in the greenhouse once again!

One of the things I love most about this time of year is the potential each day holds. I love seeing all the signs that it's spring: the cherry blossoms, daffodils, and forsythia, not to mention the chirping frogs, bird songs that greet you first thing in the morning, and simply the wonderful smell of spring. (I think that smell may actually come from the cottonwood trees, which drop what looks to me like a flower sprig.) In that same spirit of spring awakening, I love to discover what seeds have sprouted.

And the winner of the first seedling to sprout in my greenhouse is...Brussels sprouts! And then my husband pointed out the tiny lettuce sprouts. By the end of the day yesterday, which was a sunny and warm 60 degrees, several other vegetables came up: broccoli, cabbage, and maybe a pea. I had hoped for more today, but it never got warmer than 60 degrees in the greenhouse, despite the intermittent sunshine.

Next weekend, I must get the garden beds ready, which means a weekend of tilling, laying out soaker hoses, and spreading rock dust. It's been a while since I have replenished the minerals in my garden soil with rock dust. John plans to try Marenakos for granite or basalt dust, since they cut both types of rock there. We already know we can get granite dust there, but I am hoping for basalt because it has a greater number of minerals in it, whereas granite has mostly potassium.

Once the beds are ready, I need to get whatever is finally coming from Territorial Seeds this week into the ground. I can see that something is on its way; I just don't know what. I am hoping for potatoes or onion sets. I also need to plant carrots, but I am afraid the seeds will rot. We are getting a lot of rain so I may wait until April.

Until next weekend....


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