Summer is here (almost)!

17 06 2013

I know, the summer solstice on June 21st marks the official start of summer. My garden however, doesn’t know that distinction.Β Roses, peonies, and poppies are blooming; I’m harvesting radishes, lettuce, kale and spinach; and the corn, squash and beans are growing like weeds. Β I’m happy to say that the seedlings I started in March are doing great!roses 6.15.13

corn 6.15.13

poppies 6.15.13


To seed, or not to seed?

19 02 2012

It’s time to start thinking about what I want in my summer vegetable garden. I’m drawing up a map of my raised beds to chart out my vegetable garden: cool weather crops go where there’s easy access, warm weather crops are planted to take over the cool weather crops as the summer heats up, and taller crops go in the center of the raised beds.
I like to start many of my warm weather crops from seeds, and usually start them around St. Patrick’s Day so they are ready to go in the ground just after Mother’s Day. I’ve had great success with different varieties of tomatoes, peppers, beans, peas, etc., even edamame, this way.* I’m an advocate for starting from seeds and think every gardener should try it; it’s gratifying, you can keep them totally organic, and it’s very economical. I am still using packages of seeds I bought three years ago! I prefer Botanical Interests seeds; every one I’ve tried has been healthy, bountiful, and beautiful.

However, this year I’ll be out of the country for two weeks in April, unable to tend to the seedlings, which has me reevaluating my strategy. I’ll still plant my cool weather crops as always, but may purchase warm weather seedlings from a local nursery this year. I have a couple of wonderful local nursery’s with a good selection of tomatoes, melons, and peppers; even heirloom varieties if I’m feeling frisky! Or I may start my warm weather seeds mid-April when I get home, I would expect a delayed harvest but it may still be worth starting from seeds.

* Take note new gardeners: there’s no need to start cool weather crops inside (like lettuce, spinach, carrots, radishes, beets) they do best when the seeds are planted right in the ground. The same goes for voracious warm weather crops like squashes.

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