Rainy days and Sundays always get me down when I can not garden!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Spring Fever

As winter starts to wind down, and spring is around the corner, my neighbors keep asking me if I am getting excited to start gardening.  Little do they know that I already have!

Indoors, I have started seeds of cabbage, spinach, kohlrabi, onions, and celery, which have all sprouted.  This past weekend I started 9 varieties of flower seeds.  And in the next few days, I will start tomato's. peppers, and eggplant.

Outdoors, I am trying a method called "winter sowing'.  This is a alternative way of sowing seeds in the winter, outdoors, in plastic jugs and other containers, such as milk jugs, water and soda bottles and take out containers.  These containers,  which act as mini-greenhouses, allow mother nature to dictate germination.  It is good for the environment, saves space indoors, and there is no need for heat mats, indoor light systems, or other seed starting kits. There is less chance of "damping off" of seedlings and eliminates the need to "harden off" young plants that were started indoors.  Advocates of winter sowing claim the plants are stronger then plants that are started indoors, do to a stronger root system and a natural hardening off process, thus performing better out in the garden.

Out in the garden I have constructed several hoop houses.  Similar to a greenhouse, but with no heater, a hoop house extends your growing season by 4 to 6 weeks in the spring and fall.  It is even possible to grow cold hardy plants through the winter with a additional inner layer.

And don't forget that Saint Patrick's day is the unofficial start of the pea season, as long as there is no snow on the ground!

1 comment: