Sunday, January 23, 2011

First Seeds are Sown

I started the first plants for the 2011 veggie garden tonight on the kitchen island. It is still a little early but I like to give the onions and a couple early tomatoes a good head start. These early starts will be nursed along under my grow light and then placed out in the coldframe as soon as it is possible. Here are the varieties I started:

Three small flats of Amish Bottle onions. These are rather rare onions that produce a long shallot like bulb. They produced well last year and are good in storage too. Seed for them can be found at Heritage Harvest Seeds. I am also going to try some Ailsa Craig onions this season but have yet to order them.

I also start two extra early tomatoes. I have tried them in the past and they do give an early crop so it is worth the extra effort. This season there will be a True Black Brandywine & a Siletz tomato for early ones.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

When it is cold outside......

.... Charlie finds the warmest spot. This is an old cast iron grate that is retrofitted to our high efficiency furnace. She certainly is a cat that likes warmth!

Another sign of the cold weather is Amaryllis blooms. I placed this plant under the grow light about a month ago after letting it go dormant last fall. It quickly sent up two flower stems which will give use some nice colour during these grey days.

A quick update on the veggies: Look for a post on seed starting soon. Onions will be started this week which will kick start the 2011 planting season. I also need to take cuttings and pot-up a few plants under the grow light as well, look for a post on that too. I have not forgot about the seed give away either but have been neglecting to sort my seeds. Must get to that soon!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Garden Update

It has been quite a while since I did a post on the garden. This is mainly because not much is happening. I neglect to plant much for the fall/winter season and what I did plant really didn't take off this year. All is not lost though, once the sun starts strengthening late February I will have lots of area ready to plant. This should give me a nice head start on the spring garden.

Here is a photo of the garden presently. We have had kind of a strange winter so far. Snow levels have been really low. Seems we get about an inch at a time followed by a melt shortly after. More normal weather is forcasted now however so all we are waiting on is a good snow cover.

This year I am going to try my best to not over plant the garden. So there will be much less variety this year. This will allow better plant spacing and more of each crop to harvest. It will make for some hard decisions, mainly that I can't plant 15 different kinds of tomatoes!

Below are a few photos of the crops that are growing in the coldframe right now. They never really grew much this fall. Hopefully I will be able to harvest something from the frame once the sun strengthens.

Claytonia, seed shared by Thomas

Red Pac Choi

Tatsoi

Red Scallions, seed shared by Thomas

I planted these this spring and they grew bulbs instead of
scallions. I saved some bulbs this fall and planted them up.
Hopefully they will grow into some bunching onions.

The last point of today's post is to announce I will be doing a seed give away soon. All I have to do is go through my seeds first. My seed box is overflowing and there also is half a drawer full. Once I short thought what I have extra off I will make a few groups and do a draw for them. Keep an eye out for the post and maybe you'll be lucky enough to win some free seeds!