Tuesday, March 5, 2013

It's March-What Are You Planting?

I opened my hoophouse doors at noon today and knew immediately I should have done it a bit earlier in the day.
It has been a gorgeous late winter day. There's still the nip of winter in the air, but the sun has a spring warmth to it.
As I pried open the door, a gush of steam greeted me as the warm air in the hoophouse collided with the cool outside air.
I had to wait a while before I could head in to pick, it was that hot.

The work of the winter and spring are colliding just like that warm and cold air.
I'm still harvesting the nice winter greens to sell, although many of the plants are doing what they need to do to keep their species in existence. The seed stalks are shooting up, some mustards and arugulas have flowers, there are some small (and tasty!) seed heads.

Seed orders are still being filled, advance orders are coming in for the tomato seedlings and it is time to get some things started inside, and in the hoophouse.
What are you seeding now?

Long Red Florence onions

My leeks and onions have been in for a while now, and I have some lovely baby green onion tops to add to my favourite dishes. Onions, when growing from seed, need a regular "haircut" to keep their tops at 1-2". This directs the plants energy back to the root, helping the onions size up nicely.
I'll direct seed my most favourite onions right in the garden as well, so I have them early, from transplants, and late, from seed. And that is the fabulous 'Long Red Florence."

I've also got some herbs growing along nicely. Oregano, parlsey, thyme, sorrel...and some oddities. There's my cultivated apple seed from Germany and an early maturing cotton that I hope produces the most wonderful fluffy cotton balls ever on my Wellandport plantation. One must try these things. Or at least I must.
Sorrel babies

Yesterday I seeded all my eggplants, early brassicas and lettuces for seedling sales in April and garden growing in April.  Lots of kales, broccoli, cabbage and cauliflower are in, and amazingly enough, a mere 24 hours later, some of the kale varieties are up.
I love having one of my grow light stands in my kitchen, right near my woodstove. Last night with the wood stove kicking out the heat, those little kale seeds decided to pop. Miraculous.

Then there's my favourite early tomato, Stupice. I've got a four inch pot that must have 200 or so little baby Stupice sprouts in it. These will be my June tomatoes I hope. I'll get them planted in my hoophouse in April, then with a bit of luck and some Agribon cloth thrown over them for extra protection, I should have ripe tomatoes 55 or so days later. Those first tomatoes are always the best!

As for the hot peppers and sweet, they will all go in tomorrow...and the next day too. I'll soak the super hots, like the Scorpions and the Carolina Reaper for a better germination rate. I wish I'd had them in a little bit earlier, but I'll get that fire rolling in the kitchen and hopefully they'll jump up quickly. I just hope the weather stays cool so I need and want the fire.
If you come to visit and I'm wearing my bathing suit, you'll know why. Just trying to get those hot peppers going!
It's so wonderful to see all these things sprouting and growing. Great also to feel the warmth of the sun and to dream about what this year's garden can do. I never get tired of it because it is different every year. My gardens...my blank canvases await!

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