Friday, March 19, 2010

Out Sick

Ugh. I've been sick all week, so unfortunately, no alliums canned, jammed, or otherwise preserved. Next month, for sure! I'm wondering if the food-of-the-month for April will be rhubarb?

I managed a short stroll around the garden today. You can almost feel the energy in the fruit trees, pent up all winter, ready to burst into blossom. Many will probably erupt late next week.

Today is gorgeous, tomorrow is supposed to be near 70 degrees, then back to our normal 50s and showery. And back to bed for me.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Everything's Sprouting!

This weekend was a busy one in the garden. We had one last warm weekend before the weather turned last night to what is to be normal or below-normal temperatures this week. Good for the lean snowpack in the mountains that gives most of our area its' fresh water, but not so hot for puttering around the yard.

The cabbages and onions that I started in February went out into their final places this weekend. Ten Golden Acre cabbages in the two or three leaf stage went into one bed, while twenty row feet (five rows across a four-foot wide bed) of tiny onions went into another. I could've waited until April to put out the onions, but I'm so forgetful about turning off the lights at night indoors, that I'm afraid that they're going to get too long of a daylength and bulb up too early. So they went outside in their little cell-packs pretty early, and since they seemed to be happy like that, I figured that planting them now would be okay, too.

Most of the seeds I started are up now. Only the peppers and Oregon Cherry tomato have yet to show. I've never grown peppers before, so I'm not sure how long they take, and the Oregon Cherry was slow last year, so I'm not surprised that they're not up yet. The lights in the garage are pretty full, and I'll need to move the broccoli outside fairly soon to make room for the rest.

The peas I planted outside February 20th are starting to poke their heads above the soil. I don't expect them to go much further until after the weather warms back up after this week. The 6-10 day and 8-14 day forecasts show above normal temperatures, so this cold period looks to be pretty brief. Hopefully the radishes and lettuces that I sowed outdoors will finally make an appearance....

In good news, my new computer will finally get here on Wednesday. This will be the last Dell computer we ever buy. The customer service and delays are not acceptable. I won't go into more, or my blood pressure will go through the roof again. At least I'll be able to post photos again soon!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Planting Catch-Up

I am by nature a list-maker. I make lists for shopping, daily to-do lists, yearly to-do lists, lists of seeds, lists of chores, lists of gardening tasks - you get the picture.

And one thing I do every year to ensure that I succession plant, is to make a list of what I want to plant when in the veggie garden. I've made elaborate ones based on "planting by the moon", and simple plant-something-once-a-month timetables. Invariably, I fall behind. Sometimes it's weather related, sometimes a vacation is scheduled right at the time I want to get something in the ground. Mostly it's because I'm better at planning than execution.

Over the last two days, I managed to get caught up. Yesterday I planted my tomatoes and basil in small pots for starting indoors, and potted up the cabbages. Today I added broccoli and sweet peppers to the pots germinating on top of the fridge. Outside, I sowed some lettuce and radish since the soil temperature is 45 degrees. I also transplanted my lettuce sown in January, and also a number of volunteer lettuces. Frankly, the volunteers looked in better shape, if a little bit smaller than the lettuce that got to live its early days in my garage.

I'm now off the hook for a couple of weeks as far as planting seeds goes. I'll just be dealing with the huge numbers of tomatoes, broccoli, basil and peppers once they emerge.

The weather looks to be warm and relatively dry the next couple of weeks, so I'll need to get going on the strawberry and herb beds. The purple flowering plums are in full bloom already, and the pears won't be far behind.