Saturday, 21 May 2011

Ready, Set, Grow!

I'm dirty, sweaty and tired, but SO happy to say that the main garden is fully planted!  Today I put the last of the seeds and seedlings in the ground which included:

6 Leader watermelon
6 Charlois melon
20 tomato plants (various Brandywines and Romas)
3 cucumbers
Genovese Basil (in with the tomatoes)
Purple Fava Beans

I began preparing the bed at the south side of the garage where I'll be putting sweet and hot peppers, more tomatoes & basil, lots of garlic and a few flowers as companion plants. It's a very hot spot with full sun all day and with the reflective power of the south facing exterior wall behind the planting area, it's the perfect spot for peppers and tomatoes.  I hope to get that bed fully prepared and planted by the end of the weekend and then I can focus on my deck herb/flower pots and prettying up the place.

I had to resort to watering the garden today as we sadly didn't get the forecasted rain we had expected.  Our growing season is so painfully short, I really don't have the luxury of waiting for natural rainfall to water my newly planted seeds and plants.  I have a little trick though, which is to put a little peat moss in the trench or hole before the seeds/seedlings go in.  This holds some moisture around the seed (or the roots of the seedling) to both aid in germination and prevent dry out of newly transplanted seedlings.  It seems to work rather well, because when I stick a finger in the soil, it's moist down below even if the surface is dried out form the wind and sun.

Kelly hooked up his new to us plow attachment to the diesel tractor and took it for a test run out back in the tree line.  Kelly found a great deal on one locally that was lightly used but in great condition. It will come in very handy here on our property and was a wise investment at only $100.   It does a heck of a job creating the perfect furrow (I could have really used that the other day when I was planting the potatoes!).   We do have extra seed potatoes that I just couldn't fit into the main garden, so I think we'll plow up some grass adjacent to the main garden and get those in the ground.  We've got nothing to lose ~ if they don't grow well, at least we tried ~ I'd hate to throw them out.

I popped in quickly to the thrift shop the other day when I was in town and was pleased to find 2 cases of canning jars for a good price ($3.99/case for the larger ones and $2.99 for the smaller ones).  I'm trying to collect as many as I can now so that when canning time arrives, I'm not scrambling for jars.  That's frustrating and expensive to end up paying full price for jars just because you need them IMMEDIATELY.  I also found 3 stainless steel water bottles new unused condition for $.99 each.  They cost $10 in the stores so buying them this way saves money.  The spots and marks on the bottles are deposits left from our well water which is high in salt. The bottles are in pristine new condition!

What a busy week.  I'm so tired and way behind household work, but it will have to wait because the garden can't!  If all goes well, I'll be done with planting by the end of this weekend, and then I can get caught up around the house again.  All in due time :)

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