26 March 2009

Seed Starting

I thought I would get a head start this year if I grew my own vegetables and flowers from seed. Boy, was I wrong! I don't think I anticipated how early I should have been starting various seeds. I started seeds in January and February for cool season crops like lettuce, broccoli, spinach, cauliflower and onions. They took their time germinating - some didn't at all. (I know that some of them were last year's seeds, but still.)

I thought I was making progress, but I didn't have anything to compare it to...until I went to Lowes. Nothing will make you less inclined to grow from seed than visiting Lowes in mid February. I am exaggerating...a little. I did buy a few things there, but I was determined to see this growing from seed thing through. I bought onion sets - it seems the seeds I started were the wrong kind for my area. (More on onions another time) I bought heading lettuce - it was so much larger than what I had grown up to that point. I also bought broccoli - my seeds hadn't germinated. I will be buying tomatoes as well - you get the picture.

My successes? I consider the sweet corn I transplanted to the garden Wednesday a success. Ditto on the sunflower seedlings I put in the front yard at the same time. Also I have a fair amount of Black Eyed Susans and Purple Coneflowers and a few Hibiscuses that I will be transplanting soon.

On a related note, last year my mother-in-law gave me a grow-your-own-kitchen-herbs kit that she bought at Goodwill. I had no expectations of getting any plants out of it, not knowing how old it was. So I wasn't surprised when nothing happened. She gave me another one this year, maybe for Xmas, and I waited until a week or two ago to start the seeds. To my surprise, most of the seeds germinated - Basil, Parsley and Corriander, but not the Thyme. I'll keep you posted on those.

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