Monday, February 16, 2015
Always pay attention to the information on seed packs and/or seed catalogs. They will give you great information on when to start your seedlings, how long they take to germinate and when to plant them outdoors. Knowing your final frost date is important. Here in New Haven CT our final frost date is May 15th. So, if a seed pack tells me to start my seeds indoors, 6 weeks before the final frost, that means i'll plant the seeds around April 1st. This information is important; while i start parsley very early, hot peppers, celery, eggplants a bit further on.. i won't start my regular tomatoes till early April. Tomato plants grow really fast and if you start them too soon they'll be leggy and the plants will be weak (though it's easy to deal with leggy tomato seedlings, more on that later).
For now, start planning your seedling plantings, keep a log.. and i'll post some more info on lights and good growing conditions soon.
Monday, January 12, 2015
I use the 3 catalogs in the top of this photo more often than any others. I get most of my seeds from Fedco, which gives you a lot of seed for the money. However, they don't carry everything I want or need. Johhny's is more expensive but they do have some good deals on onion plants, sweet potato slips among others. The catalog is also full of great information on planting, fertilizing, etc on each variety of plant. They also have great photos which are good to look at and compare when you're deciding what to buy for this coming season. Fedco is sans photos, but if you know what you want, or use another catalog to look at photos, you can then order from them and get a better deal.
I live in CT, so I try to order from places in the same area as I live. The seed and/or plants the catalogs I use sell were grown in this area (Maine to be exact), so I know they'll do well in my area. You should try to order from catalogs in the area you live, you'll get better results that way. Though, getting a catalog (such as Johnny's) which has great info and photos, can still be a good resource tool.
Thursday, December 4, 2014
Wednesday, November 19, 2014
Monday, November 10, 2014
Thursday, October 23, 2014
Garlic is a heavy feeder, so I enrich the soil with composted manure or compost before i plant. Separate the garlic head into individual cloves. Plant the cloves (pointy end up) 4" deep, 4-6" apart and 6-8" between the rows. You should cover your garlic with mulch for the winter. 6-10" of mulch for hard neck garlic, and 10-12" for soft neck garlic. Don't put the mulch on till after the first frost, if you put it on too early, it will give overwintering insects a nice warm home for the winter, and give them a jump on your crops next season.
Most garlic types are winter hardy, though some varieties of soft necks only do well in warm climates. The reason you add the mulch is to prevent the bulbs from heaving out of the ground. When the temps start to drop, but warm up during the day, or in spring when it's getting warm but then gets cold again, the bulbs can heave themselves out of the ground. The mulch keeps the soil temp from fluctuating too much and keeps the garlic in the ground.
Lots of garden crops are still doing fine, as we haven't had a frost yet. The heat lovers though aren't very happy. It's not warm enough for them, and the sun is getting weaker than they like as well. My cayenne pepper plants have a lot of large green peppers on them. A good way to ripen some of them up is to pull the entire plant, dust off the root ball, then bring inside and hang upside down in an airy place. A good number of the peppers will ripen up for you that way.