Sunday, March 28, 2010

Seed Starting 3/28/10

We were very busy with closing on our new house this weekend, but this evening we were back at the old one and I was able to squeeze in the main seeding of my tomatoes. I put two tomato seeds in most cells and if they all germinate, then I'll have twice as many when I divide them into their own cups. I'm planning on lots of tomatoes for canning this summer. Let's hope for warm weather.

Here's the list:
6 Purple Calabash (from Miss M)
6 Heirloom Mix from Fedco 2009
6 Market Miracle (from Daphne)
12 Amish Paste (from Mom)
3 Chocolate Cherry (from Daphne)
2 Red Zebra seed saved 2008
1 Green Zebra seed saved 2009
6 Long Purple Eggplant (from Miss M)
12 Pineapple Tomatillos (from Daphne).
12 Black Sesame Seeds.

Thanks to trades and saving, I didn't buy any tomato seeds this year!

I failed with the black sesame seeds last year. I hope I can do better this year. I think fertilization, sun, and heat will be the keys.

I also re-seeded 6 Brussels Sprouts. Only half of my 2008 seeds germinated and I want plenty of Brussels Sprouts this year.

It will probably be quiet around the blog for the next month as we work on re-doing some walls and then painting in the new house, and finally finishing the moving process. We'll be there full time by May and be ready to put many plants in the ground. I was tempted to put some lettuce seeds under a milk jug while we were there this weekend but we were too busy with other things. The garden will have to wait a bit yet.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Baby Quilt

One of my cousins is having her first child this May. She hasn't found out if they are having a boy or a girl. She's always loved frogs so when I found this fabric with baby frogs, ducks, & turtles it seemed perfect.

Its a four-patch pattern. The original pattern had you set two patterned square with two white squares. I modified the pattern to have the green stand in for the white. I used the larger patterned fabrics for the four patches. I quilted it on the machine in diagonal lines.
I used the white background fabric with smaller baby animals for the border and backing. The finished quilt is 51" x 37"
I had left over fabric so I decided to make a baby blankie size. The blankie is 23" x 33". I switched the white and green fabrics.
I think that the larger version looks better, but they make a good pair.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Soaking in the Sun

This week brought warm temperatures in the 50s and even 60 and full sun. Each day when I got home from work I put a few of the hardy seedlings out for some time in the sun. I noticed that this time last year we shoveled the snow off the raised beds. This week it has melted and gone and the cold frame was in the 70s. Spring is on the way!

Here's my kale (both lacinato and winterbor) sizing up nicely with a few oak leaf lettuce plants.
Also some red acre cabbage seedling thanks to Miss M.
My sweet potatoes which were started on Jan 30th are showing more growth but it is slow going. Luckily there are still a few months before the slips will need to go in the ground.
Recent seeds sown:

Red Acre Cabbage (6) from Miss M.
Winter Savory from Miss M
Chocolate Peppers from Miss M

Catskill Long Island Improved Brussels Sprouts (12) from 2008
Freckles Romaine Lettuce (6) from 2009

A Sign of Spring

The warm weather this week almost melted all the snow that slides off the roof into a compacted pile. These crocuses are up next to the foundation of the house. When we move to the new house I want to plant crocuses next to the foundation where they'll warm up faster and bloom first.

Friday, March 19, 2010

New Seeds!

New seeds came in the mail this week and the week before last. Thanks to the generosity of Miss M at Dirt Happy, I now have more seeds to try in my new garden.
She sent:

Dragon Tongue Beans
Small Sugar Pie Pumpkin
Jarrahdale Pumpkin
Red Acre Cabbage
Broccoli Ramoso
Purple Calabash Tomato
Sweet Chocolate Pepper
Long Purple Eggplant
Iroquois Melon
Minnesota Midget Melon
Winter Savory (Perennial Herb)

I'm very excited that I'll have room in the garden for melons, pumpkins, and winter squash and I'm glad to try out these varieties.

Thanks Miss M!

Saturday, March 6, 2010


I'm pleased to say that I've had more success with getting the peppers to sprout this year. I put them in a warm spot next to a radiator. I also kept them very moist and was more patient. I seeded them on 2/21 and some of my hot pepper mix and my habaneros have sprouted in the last few days. Here is one of the hot peppers.
I also have my first tomato seedlings. The Sweet Chelsea Cherry tomatoes have sprouted, followed by a Green Zebra. Hopefully others will follow soon.
I also have sprouts up from my arugula, tatsoi, and swiss chard. No sign of the spinach. I've had poor luck with seeding spinach both inside and out. Here is arugula on the left and tatsoi on the right.
I'm also glad to see that all my herbs have sprouted, including my rosemary which has a very poor germination rate. I have a plant wintered over but I'm seeding another as insurance.
My kale is doing well, showing its second leaves, but the first set of lettuce is not. Many of the sprouts wilted. I may have one or two that will pull through. Here is my kale.
It is probably time to start some more seeds!

Monday, March 1, 2010

Seed Starting

Update to the Seed Starting List

Chocolate Cherry Tomato (2) from Daphne
Red Zebra Tomato (2) saved 2008 from a store bought heirloom
Green Zebra Tomato (2) saved 2009
Sweet Chelsea Cherry Tomato (2) 2009 Fedco

My hope is that by starting my earliest tomatoes, I may get some fruit before mid-August.

Arugula (14) 2009 Peaceful Valley
Tatsoi (14)
2009 Peaceful Valley
Swiss Chard (10) 2009 saved (Bright Lights Chard, but the plant I saved them from was red so I'm curious to see whether they turn out more than one color or not)
Spinach (14) 2008
Cubanelle Sweet Peppers (4) from Mom

I got seeds in the mail from my mom so I needed to start the Cubanelle Peppers. We are just under a month from our closing date on a new house and when we drove by the house today they had less snow then we do. So I sowed some hardy greens in hope that we might be able to move the cold frame and transplant them into the ground in early April. We may have to dig the cold frame out of the snow here to make that happen.