Thursday, May 29, 2014

Getting Easier

Today you will plant the broccoli and cabbage you planted on April 3 and harden the cauliflower you started on the 17th.

The biggest difference of today is that you will plant your zucchini (summer squash). 40 of them. One whole row. Bush zucchini take up quite a bit of room, so using your grid, you will plant where the lines cross two feet in from the edge and starting two feet in from the end as well, and then every two feet down the length of the row. These little guys don't take up much room now, but don't worry, they will. Now your garden is mostly full, leaving only the first row to continue to fill up.

Once again, just a reminder, don't let your babies stay outside too long the first day, and a little longer each day. You'll be planting them next week.

See you next week

Thursday, May 22, 2014

A Day of Rest

Well at least it will seem like it.

Today you will start hardening off the broccoli and cabbage you planted on April 3. You will also start hardening off your zucchini (summer squash).

Once you get all that hauled outside somewhere safe, you can go plant the 20 cabbage plants that have been enjoying the sun while you've been laboring out in the garden this last week - the ones you started on April 3. Plant only the healthiest ones; with luck you'll have a few left over. Planting those few extra leaves room for some to not make it.

Once again, just a reminder, don't let your babies stay outside too long the first day, and a little longer each day. You'll be planting them next week.

Enjoy your break. See you next week

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Last Big Planting Day

Doesn't that sound good?

Today is for peas. I have a stretch of wide square wire fencing. I think it's called hog fence. I've bent it over so it's teepeed down the center of the row. The peas I pick are bush peas; they don't get but like two feet tall or so but like all peas, they climb, hence the fencing.

Plant your seeds along the foot of the fence on each side about an inch apart. That'll end up being 960 seeds. As the summer goes along keeping the plants clinging to the fence as opposed to leaning toward the sun is important. The wide square style of fencing is important so you can harvest your peas when they hang inside your teepee - you need to be able to reach through the fence.

Aside from filling up your first row, you will have only one more row to plant.

You're almost there. Keep up the good work

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

The Big Planting Day 6

In this row you will be planting directly into the ground the seeds for 360 beets, 360 carrots, 360 parsnips, 360 salsify. I know that sounds huge but it is only one row. This translates into planting 9 seeds in each square. That will use up 2.5 of your 4X4 grid moves for each thing. According to the book, you can put 16 seeds per square for carrots if you want to, but it's easier if everything is the same.

RESIST THE URGE to plant more than one seed per spot. Overcrowding diminishes your harvest. I know - tedious - but you only have to do it once.

Rest up; we'll be planting another row tomorrow

Monday, May 19, 2014

Big Planting Day 5

Today is a Spinach day

Today we will be devoting an entire row to spinach. That 1440 seeds planted 9 to a square. They are also a very short season crop, so if it isn't too hot, there will be a second crop for this row later on.

Have fun
See you tomorrow

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Big Planting Day 4

Today we'll be planting 192 rutabaga, 256 turnips, and 192 kohlrabi. These are all planted 4 plants to a square. I hope your back is surviving. Once again, it's important to plant only one seed per spot, though accidents happen.

Oh and I hope you haven't been forgetting to introduce your cauliflower to the sun a little more each day.

Rest up, there's another big day tomorrow

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Big Planting Days 1, 2, & 3

Since my rows are 4 feet wide, spacing along it's length is important for efficiency. I have created a 4X4 grid made out of string with 1-foot squares, the corners are pegged into place by some really big nails used for building log cabins, but any stick will do, or for that matter anything you can create that blocks off a 4X4 grid will do. String allows me to walk the grid along the row.

Today we are going to set out your first 16 broccoli and your first 4 cabbage. It might be easier if you started the broccoli on one end of your row and the cabbage on the other end. We'll be planting the cauliflower in this same row next week. Here comes the reason for the grid. Each of these plants will be planted in the center of each square. That's it for this row for today.

In the next row, we'll start planting potatoes. I hope you know what eyes are on a potato because you'll be dicing up your potatoes so you have at least one eye per. Sometimes they are really close together, but that's okay. Depending on the size of your potato, you should get 4 to 6 set and maybe more. You'll be planting one in the center of each of your squares.

Tomorrow you will plant another row of potatoes, and the next day another row. 160 sets per row.

That's not all. Don't forget to start indoors another 4 lettuce, and your last 16 cauliflower. And also today you'll start hardening the cauliflower you planted on April 3.

 Rest up; we'll be planting another row tomorrow

Thursday, May 8, 2014

Harden Your Babies

Yep, that's the task of the day, and for the duration of this week. Today, you'll need to take your very first plantings outside to enjoy the sunshine (and even if it happens to be raining). The only time you will avoid this task today is if the outside temperature is below 40 degrees.

Remember those dates. This week you'll be introducing what you planted on March 20 to the sunshine and other natural occurrences. Today it's an hour or so. Tomorrow - 2 hours. The next day - 3 hours, and so on. This is very important, because on the 15th these babies will be spending the rest of their lives out in the garden.

This week is important in another way too. This week you'll need to start getting your garden plot ready, because also next week, quite a few seeds will be being planted directly into the garden. At one row a day, you will need five rows ready to go by the 15th.

The basis for much of my planning is a very helpful book called Square Foot Gardening. The premise of the book was how to grow quite a few things in a very small space. Since my season is too short for much of that, I can't crunch things together like they do, but it's still very valuable. One thing I do is make my rows 4 feet wide. My rows happen to be 40 feet long. So when I say prepare one row a day, it's a pretty good task.

Happy Gardening
Enjoy the sun

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Nature Begins to Show Her Colors

May 1 - The ground is still frozen only a few inches down but most of the snow should be gone by now.

And of course, it's time to start some more seeds.

The last 16 broccoli and 4 cabbage today 20 cauliflower (there will be one more installment next time), 4 lettuce and today I will start 40 zucchini.

Once again, that's 3 six-packs of broccoli, 1 six-pack of cabbage, 4 six-packs of cauliflower, and another 1 for the lettuce. The zucchini, however is going to fill another tray with 7 six-packs. Like always, remember to date today's plantings.

See you next time