Friday, April 8, 2011

And Yet Another Busy Day

View from the second story over my kitchen
All planted up except the herb bed in the middle

OK. I'm ready for a break now. My right arm hurts. It has been hurting for a week on and off. I have to give it a rest soon. This morning I was inside getting some soil blocks ready. The peppers were planted four days ago I think. It seems forever ago, but it wasn't. I wanted to have the bigger 2" blocks ready once they germinated. I made 72 of them. I don't think I'll need that many, but I'm ready one way of the other. They should germinate anytime now. Also this weekend I want to start the tomatoes and eggplant, but I don't know if I'll have time to do it, so I figured I'd have blocks all ready and they would be set to go. In addition I started some more cilantro in the 1 1/2" blocks. 18 more of those planted.

This afternoon was outside. I watered the peas, onions and spinach. I noticed that I didn't plant any turnips or radishes. So I put the turnips around the broccoli and the radishes filled the bed with the spinach. I didn't have enough spinach seed to do the whole bed. Two and a half 8' rows were done with radishes instead. It is probably way too many all at once, but I'll deal with that if they all come up.

Then I was going to plant my carrots. I fertilized the bed and started to dig in the fertilizer, but whoops I did the part with the fava beans too. I noticed just as I finished and saw a fava bean. The good part is that they are germinating well. The bad part is I don't know how many are too deep to germinate now. I don't really turn the soil over when I do this so there is a chance they will survive. If not I guess I'll have more room for succession planting.

Carrots germinating under various things

The carrots are being experimented on. I decided I wanted to see what worked better to make them germinate. I've always direct seeded them into rows and put burlap on top. In the distant past I used boards to germinate them. I'd love to chit them like I do for my spinach which is also a hard germinator. So I tried several things - totally unscientific as I should have some from each variety in each way of germinating. But no. That would be too smart. Instead I made seed tapes a la Granny. But not blocks like she does since I like rows. So I used TP and cut it into thin strips and pasted a SugarSnax seed every inch. That is currently under the burlap. Next is the direct seeded Mokum which is also under the burlap. Next is the direct seeded Purple Haze which is under boards, or is now, but once the peas start coming up one of the boards will have to be removed as it is too long.

The next is not planted yet. I made some TP seed tapes by folding over the TP. Then I rolled it up with some plastic wrap in between so it would hold together better. Then I soaked the whole thing. I'm hoping I can unroll it without it breaking up too much. I'll wait until I see some sign of germination from them. Not much mind you as I want the carrot roots to grow down into the soil, but the first sign from any of them and into the soil they will go.

View from the second story hall, one bed doesn't fit in the photo
Two and a half beds are planted up already

And not to be forgotten. I noticed there was no place on my plan for the beets. I'm not a beet fan, but my townhouse mates are, so I'm planting a few. I decided to use those little corners by the onions that weren't planted.


  1. My goodness lady, you have definitely been doing a lot of work in the garden! Maybe tomorrow you will get the rain that we had all day today and you will get a deserve one!

    The weather down here is supposed to break tomorrow and temps on Monday 81!! We will be putting in some long days to catch up!!

  2. I'm with Robin, you have been busy lately! But the beds are looking good. I'll be watching to see how your carrots do. I'm still looking for the ultimate method myself.

  3. Everything is looking great! I want to see lots of pics of the herb garden...I love the set up you have there...

    Keep us posted on how the carrots far the ones that I started in the tiny soil blocks have way out performed the seed mats or direct seeding...but it's way labor intensive ...

  4. WOW! Everything is looking good. I especially like your onion/herb/greens beds. Your garden is very organized!

  5. What beautiful results of your hard labor. Do you spend the winter designing in your head? It is lovely.

  6. Yet another productive day! The carrot experiment is interesting. I do hope you give regular updates. I have yet to plant my carrots or any beets yet. I need to do that soon. I was out working in the garden most of today (mostly planting potatoes) but I ran out of steam and quit at 3pm.

  7. What a beautiful day we had in New England! Boy, you have been so busy. It must feel so good to have so much accomplished. Your garden looks absolutely beautiful.

    I have Friday's off from work so was able to do a little garden cleanup in the raised beds today. Tomorrow I will begin hardening off some spring crops.

  8. WOW! A lot of work, indeed! My starter garden is shaping up...I'm excited to HOPEFULLY have something to share one day soon for Harvest Monday!

  9. I just love your gardens, and the views from above! I've threatened to put a "crows nest" atop the patio roof so I could take bird's eye views of my garden!

    I'm way behind my planting schedule, well a week behind, but good weather is predicted for the next week.....Ta-da!

  10. It will be interesting to see what the carrots do. I just use the edge of a 1x2 to make an indentation, sow the carrot, set my mister every day and hope for the best :). I forget how wide and long are your beds?

  11. I was so busy I totally forgot to replay to anyone.

    villager, I think carrots are just hard. They really don't always germinate well. Sometimes they do, sometimes they don't. I still haven't figured them out.

    Deb, that is just one section of herb garden. I've got more sections for herbs along my foundation and along the fence near the driveway.

    Katrina, thanks

    Patricia, yes I do. Sometimes it even gets on paper.

    Laura, I've been losing steam a lot recently. So much work that I'm unaccustomed to over the winter. And I keep wanting to eat all the time.

    GrafixMuse, thanks, and so nice to have a pretty day off of work.

    Kimberly, I hope so too.

    Granny, I liked the last houses vantage point better. I could get the whole garden in without a weird perspective. But better a weird perspective than none at all I guess.

    Tessa, my beds are 4' wide and 16' long with a board in the middle so it doesn't spread.

  12. You've been busy! I love your garden design, it's so neat and efficient.