February 5, 2013

Adventures in Gardening~ Timing

In this post, I will talk a bit about what I do to plan the planting of my seeds. Let me start by saying that last year, there were only a few things that got started as seedlings. Everything else just got put straight into the ground because we didn't get started early enough and wanted to get it all in ASAP! But this year we have plenty of time for the early planting process.

If you are like me, you are still kind of learning about when to plant what...needless to say I was tickled to find this fabulous Planting Guide on the Baker's Creek website. It goes into a great discussion about what needs to be planted early, what should be started as seedlings and what can go straight in the ground. It also gives a great summary about germination times if you want to plot it so things grow together. I printed it off and have it in a folder for quick reference.

Another great resource is the book The Heirloom Life Gardener
I bought this at the end of the growing season last year---but man, i wish I had it from the beginning because it has soooo much information! Separated out by vegetable, you get a host of information about the whole process from planning to planting to harvesting to seed collecting to preserving!

Here is another great resource-Free Vegetable Planting Guide. This guide gives you a basic list of the main vegetables and has a way for you to calculate when to sow your seeds based on the last frost and a place for you to write it down. Quite handy. I printed one off for myself.

Between these resources, I can now go through my seed list and figure out which things I can start the soonest and which things to plant where. I want to rotate my crops a little this year--it won't need a lot since it was our first year.

Now I'm having to squirrel away egg cartons from my husband...he saves all our cartons to give back to our egg man (we get farm fresh eggs) but I'm going to need some for my seedings...although I am considering this method:
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or this one:
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We always have newspapers or toilet paper rolls, so either of them would work--and are biodegradable so I can just plant the whole thing. I think Little Britches would enjoy these methods. He picked a few seed packs for himself and he enjoyed watching his seedlings grow last year.

So that is how I plot out my timing for the planting. We have late frosts...so I can't get very much actually INTO the ground until late April or early May unless it is supposed to go in before the final frost. But I have a lot of porch containers for my herbs and flowers that I CAN do earlier. I love that first day of getting my hands dirty!

The next post will be about some ideas I am thinking of for planting the actual seeds...to keep the plants under control---mostly a lot of Pinterest ideas!

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