Thursday, April 7, 2011

Spring Garden-Round 2

So, I haven't given up on trying to grow my own veggies. I'm trying it again this year. Everything's organic, like last time. I'm determined to get at least some veggie production this time around. Last year, I made lots of mistakes like:
planting too soon
not planting in full sun
falling and being stuck on crutches most of the season

So, this time, I started my seeds indoors, under controlled (mostly) conditions. I bought a seed heating mat and a thermometer to control the temperature of the soil. I used special sterile potting soil, sure to be free of any bugs or disease. I put them in front of a south-facing window, which is supposed to be the best. I keep the soil moist but not wet. I rotate the seedlings often so that they don't stretch toward the light and get wimpy stems. If I don't get veggies after all this, I will be thoroughly frustrated. Here's my garage set-up:

So far, so good. I have about a 95% germination rate! Hooray! The onions are the only thing that didn't germinate, which didn't surprise me, b/c I was really pushing the limit on their season anyway. The other seedlings are tomatoes (three varieties), red and orange bell peppers, and eggplant.

Within a week or so I'll direct seed some other foods outside. Plants with larger seeds do better if you just plant them outdoors, so I'll put beans, cucumber, squash and maybe some others out soon. I'm also going to do some herbs on our deck. Our deck gets full sun all day long, so I'm also going to plant a few of my tomato seedlings out there....just in case. Soon, my seedlings from the garage will be ready to get acclimated to the wild outdoors and I'll have to slowly introduce them to being outside. Seems strange having to do that for a plant that's meant to be outside, but they haven't experienced wind, rain or temperature fluctuation at all, so they're kind of fragile. If I just plop them out there, they won't make it. So....that's the garden update for this year! Cross your fingers that we get some food! If you live close, maybe you can come share in our harvest. I'm excited.

Also, if you've read this whole post, you either are interested in growing your own food, or you're a friend. So, I've saved our other update for last. We're having a baby!!! Due this fall. It's kind of fun that the life of my seedlings coincides with the life of our new little addition. Is that nerdy? Anywho, we're excited. Hooray for gardens and babies!