Saturday, March 26, 2011

More Seeds!

Last Saturday I started my tomato and pepper seedlings. I planted 24 tomatoes and 19 peppers, a few varieties of each (listed in my garden planning post). I planted each one in a 2-inch pot so it would have some room to grow. I also placed them on a heat mat, which is new for me this year. The heat really worked - my first tomato seedling only took four days! It was an Italian tomato. I've had to water the seedlings at least twice a day because they're drying out so fast.

The first pepper seedling popped up today (Aurora) but I was expecting most of those to take about 14 days to germinate. My onions finally seem to be hitting their stride, and most of the swiss chard seedlings look great. The lettuce greens seem pretty flimsy....I'm realizing I started them in seed starting mix but they probably could have gone right into soil. Maybe I'll remedy that later today.

As my husband and I talk about canning, he's concerned we might not have enough tomatoes. I'm more concerned with the limited garden space we'll have. Regardless, I started 7 more Amish Paste tomatoes today.

The weather last weekend was a bit of a tease. It was in the 50's and I got our compost pile going. Now there are snow flurries outside and the temperature likely won't top 20 degrees this weekend. Grrr, Wisconsin.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Seed Starting

I got antsy last weekend and started some spinach, arugula and yellowleaf lettuce seeds in hopes of having some fresh greens before I can get them from the garden. I didn't water them correctly (I have a spray bottle now) so the germination was a bit uneven, but I'm hoping that will be fixed this week.

Today I planted onions (36), two kinds of swiss chard (12), parsley (24) and chamomile. The new seeds are on a warming mat under the lights, and they look quite happy. These all should actually be started next weekend, but I'll be out of town.

When I first started gardening (2 years ago), I had no idea how to start seeds. Now I'm feeling a bit more confident. For other neophytes out there, here's a quick example of the different shapes and sizes seeds come in.

So you get a sense of scale, here's the paper I wrote on, next to a seed packet.

Next up: I'll be starting peppers and tomatoes on March 20.