Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Six weeks till the middle of March

Dear Friends,

A few days ago, I realized that in just 6 weeks it will be the middle of March. This is a sign of growth! Not only a sign of impending spring, a sign to get busy starting seeds, but a sign of healing for me. This is the first time since the accident that I have been able to understand the calendar, or to anticipate the passage of time. Very important activities for the gardener. (However, not entirely necessary - as I have been growning most of my veggies for the last year, inspite of looking at clocks and calendars and having it meaning exactly nothing.) So, Hurray!

And hurray for it being almost spring! Oh course we have had something like 15 inches over our average for the season to date. Other than my plums getting ready to bloom, and some bulbs starting to grow, it really doesn't feel like spring at all. Right now the yard and gardens have standing water and it seems cold and dark.

None the less, I am going to start summer seeds very soon. I stager my plantings, partially because of my disabilities and not being able to do lots at once. And partially to spread out the harvest. Last year I was still picking ripe summer squash in November!

I am going to start with, and I know this might sound ridiculous, 1 each of 2 different varieties for each of the following plants: Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Peppers, Tomatoes, cucumbers, and Melons, Sea Kale, Egyptian and Malabar spinach. I will start only 1 seed of two different varieties of each. Then every month through July or August, I will repeat the same more or less. I know that the plants I start this early might not make it, and the plants I start late might not produce, depending on the weather. But sometimes I get summer veggies right up to Christmas, so it is worth trying here in zone 8 or warmer.

After the first month I will probably only start one summer squash a month, as we eat less of that than Winter squash. And I will also start some Sea Kale, Egyptian and Malabar spinach. I will also start 6 Roma tomatoes in March or April for salsa. And I will continue to start other greens, lettuce, and some root crops in between. It will be tasty!

Of course I am still getting produce now - Brussels Sprouts, Kale, Chinese Mustards and other greens, Turnips, and very soon I will begin pulling parsnips . . .

I had a busy day packing seed orders and organizing seeds and stuff. Still not done, but it is getting closer,

Wish me luck!

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