Skip to main content

Starting Seeds

My Girl and I (with Daddy's help setting up tables and lights) started our first seeds of 2012 last night. 

We planted Onion Candy Hybrid, which I thought I had more seed of, but it was only a partial packet left over from last year so a rather sparsely filled flat.  I think I'll buy more (this seed was from the Jung's catalog) and direct sow more onions outside later for another crop.  The seed packet recommends starting indoors 8-10 weeks ahead of last frost-free date (around May 10th here), so we're around the 9 weeks mark.  Weird, I'm on time for something. 

Just for the heck of it, we also planted some old perennial seeds I had on hand.  Alchemilla mollis 'Thriller' was 2009 seed, but I am hopeful nevertheless.  It is supposed to germinate in 4-5 weeks at temps between 60-70 degrees, which our basement laundry room, location of the seed starting project, is.  I ordered the seed online way back when from Swallowtail Gardens in Santa Rosa, CA.  I think at the time it was one of the few places I could find Alchemilla seed online, but maybe I didn't look really hard.  I don't think I can ever have too much Lady's Mantle.  It's just too pretty:


Lady's Mantle, still my fav perennial.

We also sowed some 2011 seed I had ordered from Park Seed called 'Rare Succulents Mixed'.  I had envisioned a project involving a homemade birdhouse with a mixed succulent 'green roof'.  We'll see about that; the seed itself looked pretty doubtful.  Have you ever seen Hens & Chicks in bloom?  Ugly, right?  So's this seed.  The packet says they want temp of 70-75 degrees and germination time will vary from a few days to a year.  Well, they've got till spring when all the other seedlings move outside, since I'm definitely too impatient to wait a year.  They also want bottom watering and a half and half sand/soil mix instead of the regular seed starting mix I use for everything.  Whatever.  It's nice to want things. 

The last seed we sowed was Verbena bonariensis, an annual with awesome, abundant purple blooms, reaching about 3' tall.  I met this plant at the MN Landscape Arboretum a couple of years ago and ordered some seed from Park Seed which I meant to grow last summer but never got around to it.  V. bonariensis wants 70 degrees and bottom heat, but they'll have to settle for just being off the cold basement floor; they don't know how good they've got it.  I was supposed to start them 6-8 weeks ahead of last frost, so maybe I'm a little ahead of myself on this one.  I'm just so excited:


V. bonariensis in mixed bed at MN Landscape Arboretum, Summer 2012



Filling trays with potting mix


My Girl likes getting dirty.  Speaking of dirty, please ignore the laundry in the background.  Seriously.
.

Comments

Popular Posts

Broccoli Land Speed Record

I'm behind in posting my seed starting progress.  On Wed, March 16th, about 8 weeks till last predicted frost, I started my pepper seeds.  I planted two cells of Jalapeno, two of green bell peppers and 5 of the colorful Carnival Mix bells.  I always plant 2-3 seeds per cell and then thin to the strongest survivor.  So they are all up and happy now: I was planning to start my tomato and broccoli seeds a week ago on Tues, March 29th (6 weeks till last frost) but didn't get around to it until Friday, April 1st.  Close enough.  Mother Nature's behind this spring too if you ask me.  It snowed last week, for pete's sake! Last night, I went down to water and check on things, and the Romanesco Broccoli seeds are already up!  That's got to be a broccoli land speed record, right?  Three days?  The package says they emerge in 10-21 days so I am feeling pretty dang good about my wicked horticultural skillz.  Here's a pic of my eager little broccoli seedlings:

Go Home

I haven't left my corner of the world past the mailbox in a week. I haven't blogged in, I don't know, years? Coronavirus is here. Our spring break turned into 'social distancing' instead of visiting Grandma and Grandpa.  Regardless of human anxiety and fear, spring has the guts to show up. Snow piles are almost melted, birds are chatty in the cottonwood tree and the rhubarb is peeking out of the ground near the chicken coop. Seeds have the audacity to grow. Do I?

Night gardening deserves a quiet night

One evening this week, Monday, June 20th to be exact, my Hubby and I planted our new blueberry hedge around the two outside edges of the potager.  I ended up deciding on 'Northblue' plants since they looked nice at the nursery and Auntie Linda, who grows just a tiny ACRE of these blue beauties, gave her seal of approval to the performance of this northern-hardy variety.  Apparently they've only failed to produce once in twenty years for her, that's a pretty solid record in my book.  I don't really have it in the 'budget' to buy eleven #1 gallon blueberry plants, so Hubby and I declared them his Father's Day gift, pretty much making them a necessity.  That's how we roll. I wanted to act like a sober gardener and plant in straight rows for once, so I actually measured and marked the rows w/ paint before digging.  They are planted on center 4' away from the outside veggie boxes.  'Northblue' is supposed to get about 3' wide so theoreti