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Seeds and Seedlings

Hi my garden friends ~ I missed you! Needless to say, I've been in-hiding like the rest of the world, trying to educate two eight year olds and entertain an household, while also trying to fit my head around this whole situation we've found ourselves.

cloudy the cat

I’ve been spending my days, these endless days of self isolation from a pandemic that has changed the world, keeping busy planting seeds. It keeps me happy, in the fresh air with my fingers in the dirt.

Honestly, I’ve never been so organized with my seed planting. Usually I’m a weekend-warrior type gardener, or a quick run out to the back yard after work before it gets dark. But time is slowly ticking by now that we are all isolated, and I am fussing and fiddling with my green babies daily.

It’s been an interesting time to say the least with the virus leaving me homeschooling the twins and focusing on ways to become more sustainable.

cherry tree blossoming

Out of a job that I’ve had for the past 12 years, I’ve found more time to garden then ever before and it feels great. Just the other day, hubby and I were noticing all the spring flowers and fruit blossoms change and evolve daily, otherwise seen briefly only on weekends - it's a beautiful sight. And we sit and stare at the garden, never seemed to have time to do that before.

pink peach blooms

Now we can track that peony opening or peach tree blossoming but also spend a lot more time on sowing seeds at different successions, potting seedlings up to larger pots, feeding with fish emulsion, watering and exposing trays of green babies to sun light every day.

There is a slight wandering feeling I have by not working full time; I feel rudderless in a way, so by concentrating on growing food I'm finding it grounding. Literally, lol.

I started with the broccoli about a month ago, meant to write a blog about it but this whole thing kinda swept my legs from under me. I planted two different kinds of broccoli: Chou and Waltham. Waltham seems to be the stronger option so far with more wide green leaves and stronger stems. Then, I planted another round of broccoli a few weeks later, and then another just last week, hoping to spread out the harvests and avoid a glut in broccoli all at once.

seed starting substitutes

From there I planted some slow-growing celery, so tiny in their narrow pots of toilet paper stacked vertically squeezed inside an ice cream container - doesn't get cheaper or easier than that to start seeds.

Then the heat-loving tomatoes and peppers were sowed in six-packs. Lots and lots of tomatoes and peppers; red, orange and purple peppers and orange, yellow and hearty, big red tomatoes.

Then about two weeks ago, we started the 'sugar baby' watermelons and ' early fortune' and 'patio snacker' cucumbers from West Coast Seeds, and directly planted kale, arugula, 'oregon giant' pea and carrot seeds in the raised beds, saving one of the four beds for the beans to direct sow tomorrow when the nighttime temps warm up consistently.

perfect cucumber baby

Every other day, I feel the seedlings with very diluted, like diluted-diluted, fish emulsion and water daily. When daytime temperatures rose to over 15C I started to bring the seedling trays outside in the sun for the day.

Our raised beds were prepped with SeaSoil, mushroom compost and sheep manure I would say at least three months ago, effectively smothering any wayward weeds. We added scoop of vermiculture (worm castings) and some ashes from our fireplace, plus a sprinkle of bone meal in each hole we planted the broccoli as a head start for the seedlings.

Imperative is to have irrigation as there will be days where you can’t reach your garden to water, and it literally can mean ’life and death’ for your plants! We learned that lesson the hard way our first season, three years ago.

lil green babies

An addition to my garden progress this year is to add floating row cover. Never had it before, didn't know too much about it but knew my broccoli got pretty beat up last year by everything from flea beetles to cabbage moths and Mr. Google answered my search with ‘floating row cover’.

So I bought one, cut it up into four equal to put over the four raised garden beds and already found it incredibly useful so far in keeping the stellar jays from nipping off the snow pea sprouts. Ha-ha take that Stellar Jays!

Will keep you updated on the yogarden garden soon! Take care garden buddies x

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