Monday, March 28, 2011

More Winter Sowing

I finally got around to sowing the last batch of seeds I ordered, as well as some of those from last year's Seed Savers order that we never did anything with. Those plastic salad and strawberry containers sure come in handy!

Anyway, here's what went out today.

Green Arrow Pea
Dwarf Gray Sugar Pea
Mexican Sour Gherkin Cucumber
Moon and Stars Watermelon

Yellow Pear Tomato
Orange-Fleshed Purple Smudge Tomato
Great White Beefsteak Tomato
Black Seaman Tomato
(was going to do the Goldman's Italian American tomato, too, but the seed packet was empty!)

Peaches and Cream Sweet Corn
Chocolate Morning Glory
Dwarf Blue Alpine Columbine

Phew! I hope it all takes! Or maybe not... that's a lot of stuff... ;)

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spring! Well...

The weather has been decidedly spring-like these past few days. I was even surprised and pleased to see that all the garlic that I planted in the fall has sprouted as of yesterday — they weren't there a couple days ago.

Then, I woke up this morning. Much to my surprise, what do I see out the window?

Several inches of snow.


I know that it's March and I live in Niagara Falls, NY, and that it has been known to snow well into April, but goshdarnit!

In happier news, I got more heirloom tomato seeds in the mail that I am excited to try:

Orange-fleshed Purple Smudge
Yellow Pear
Goldman's Italian American

Plus, I am going to try corn this year! Peaches and Cream. Hoping to get all these into winter sowing containers by this weekend.

Spring, spring, where art thou?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

And almost a year later...


I can't believe I just stopped garden blogging just as the season was starting last year. What a bummer. I guess it just amounted to being very, very busy throughout the summer (basically holding down two full-time jobs plus a bunch of other stuff on top of the gardening duties) and just didn't carve out time for writing about the greenery.

Well, I can tell you that we had a pretty successful season last year overall. The winter sown plants performed beautifully once I got them into the ground, which was late, believe you me — I think it wasn't until July that I actually planted most of them, poor babies. Most of what worked really well were the tomatoes, cherry varieties in particular. Among our favorites were Sungold (the plant purchased from a local grower), Coyote, Sugar Lump, and Black Cherry (all of which were winter sown). We had a bunch of chiles from Cross Country online, plus I tried out a couple sunflowers which were a lot of fun. I am planting more of those this year and excited about it!

In the fall, I ordered three varieties of garlic and planted those in October or November... Chesnok Red, Transylvanian, and Simonetti from We Grow Garlic. We planted some (six cloves each), but ate most and let me tell you, each of those varieties are delicious and just something over and above what you get at the grocery store. Our favorite was the Chesnok Red and next year I'm hoping to try more varieties, too. Crossing fingers that they will be showing up in the garden soon... well, OK, sometime in July, I guess... but that's soon, right? ;)

This past week, I finally got around to doing my winter sowing. I was worried that it was too late, but read in a forum somewhere that generally, it's never too late to try it. Especially considering how unpredictable the spring season is in my area, I figured what the heck. Here's what I've got so far:

Cherokee Purple
Bonny Best
Black Cherry
Sugar Lump
Super Sioux
Black Krim
Fuzzy Peach

Other Delectables
Teddybear sunflower
Sweet basil
Edisto Cantaloupe

And I am hoping to plant a few more seeds in the coming days, too.

Last fall I also managed to expand our growing area by laying down layers of cardboard and shredded leaves in preparation for easy spring prep! I have a few small compost piles going, too.

Finally, the best news of all is that at the end of last summer, I quit my day job as an in-house graphic designer at a small book publisher in order to pursue teaching at the college level and having more time to build my career as an exhibiting artist! This means that my schedule is very flexible and much more free — I will have plenty of time to spend in the garden, more than ever before. Not to mention more time to document what I'm doing in the garden as well!

See you again soon!