Wednesday, March 30, 2011

The chilluns are growing

I've been tending to the tomatoes, peppers and broccoli seedlings in our bedroom the past month.  Yes, perhaps I was a bit eager with starting them, but I don't mind watching them grow.  A little taste of spring perhaps.  Spring just can't get here fast enough.  Anyway, the tomatoes are really starting to get bigger so I needed to upgrade them a bit from their original peat pellets into larger pots.  (Makes me think of that book A Fish Out Of Water).  Anyway, I did that this evening outside in shed.  So here they are.

My plan is to have 8 tomato plants this season.  The seeds I used were from several seasons back so I basically tripled up on each variety of them to be sure that I'd get some successful germination of each.

This weekend I will transfer the peppers to larger pots as well.  (I just ran out or I would have done that tonight).

Additionally I ordered a Bluecrop highbush blueberry bush and that came in the mail a few weeks back.  I put that in the ground a couple weeks ago.

I'm really hoping that I have success with it.  I planted a raspberry bush a few years back and it's being growing like a weed, but has yet to give me any fruit.  I'm hoping that the blueberry bush will give me some successes.  I know that I'll have to wait a few years but I don't mind, I enjoy the process.

However, the other day, Matt was out playing with his friends in the backyard.  I guess they didn't see my new planting.  (My bad for not putting something around it).  Needless to say, it has suffered it's first setback, d'oh!

I don't know what to say...I hope that it doesn't stress it out too much.  I'm hoping I can salvage the broken branch.  I put it in a glass of water.  Who knows...maybe it will take root.  I've had successes like that before.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Early Plantings

It's been a tough winter for me for some reason.  Just didn't "like" it.  But I think that towards the end I started to come to terms with it and accept the fact that like the trees, people too need a time of rest and hibernation.  That said, I am still glad spring is close by.  Seeds have been ordered and delivered to my door.  Plans have been made for what I will be planting and my warm season crops that will need transplanting have already been started.

My plans for this year are to try out some new varieties of peppers, and add some new additions to my garden repertoire, that being, sweet potatoes, red potatoes, and broccoli.  Additionally I ordered a blueray highbush blueberry bush that I am excited about.  I am  hoping that with the volunteering that I will be doing with the Chester County Food Bank at Springton Manor this season I will learn much.

Here is what I plan on growing this season:

Swiss ChardOregano
Soy BeanChives
Snow PeasCilantro
Green Beans
Sugar Snap Peas
Yellow Squash
Sweet Pepper
Red Potatoes
I already started the peppers, broccoli and tomatoes.  I think I made my first mistake already by being too eager and starting the tomato seed too soon.  Hopefully I can keep them going by transferring them into larger and larger pots before getting them in the ground.  As you can see by the photo, they have already germinated, while the peppers are still yet to germinate (the top half of the tray).  They don't go into the ground until May, which is two months out.

Broccoli was a late idea for me, but I figured I give it a try as its something that the boys enjoy (aka tolerate) and I've seen my neighbor grow it successfully.  So I will try out three broccoli plants this season.  The plan for peppers this year is to try out a new variety of hot called Aji, which I fell in love with while in Ecuador.  I will need to see if I can find an Aji recipe to make which we had every night while there which we put on rice, popcorn, soup.  A nice way to spice up things.  In addition to the Aji, other pepper varieties this year are:  Buran, Chervena Chushka, and Tollies Sweet.  I ordered these from the Seed Saver's Exchange.

As for tomatoes, I am taking a risk by sticking with seeds that are 2 and 3 seasons old.  Although, seems like they are germinating just fine.  Focus is Romas for my sauces and then the beefy ones for salads and sandwiches.  Varieties selected are:  Roma, Beefsteak, Beefmaster, Early Girl and Rutgers.  I was reading up on the difference between determinate and indeterminate varieties which was first brought to my attention at a Food Bank meeting.  Roma's and Rutgers are determinates while the Beefsteak, Beefmaster and Early Girls are indeterminate.  Just  knowing this little bit of info will really help me in where to plant them as well as to prune or not to prune!

Next post will be on flower seed plantings.