Saturday, January 1, 2011

Our Garden Schedule

(Originally posted in 2008 - garden pictures are from 2007)

I know lots of people who, luckily, live in warmer climates, have already started some of their seedlings. Some very lucky people are even able to get out and dig around a bit in their gardens! Lucky, lucky them!
Not us....there's still easily three and a half feet of snow outside....but the melt has definitely begun. Many late afternoons this week have been spent soaking up some sunshine sitting on the porch. It sure does cool down tho, once that sun disappears!
I can't start seedlings yet, it's too early for that. Up here we can't put anything in the garden until at least the middle of May (transplants, that is). Another factor is that we still have fairly heavy clay soil.

That means it takes longer to dry out, even in the garden where we have been adding all kinds of manure and leaves. The garden soil needs to be dry enough that the Gman is able to rototill it....last year I think that happened the second week of May.

Remember that we seeded all of the veggie garden in fall rye last October? We want that to come up and grow about 8 inches, Before the rototilling is done. Then after tilling, it's best to let the garden sit for two weeks, to ensure all the rye has broken down. Only then, can we begin to plant.

We do all of these things because we want to (and need to) increase the soil fertility....that takes additions of natural things (manure, leaves, sowing the fall rye etc.) and it takes Time!

There are some things I can direct seed before the middle of May, including all the root veggies:
potatoes, carrots, beets, turnips, rutabaga, onion sets, mangels & sugar beets (the last two solely for the animals)
I can also seed peas, lettuce, spinach, chard, kale, radish, mustard, collards

At the same time, I can start to harden off and transplant the seedlings I start in the house:
broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage (red and green), squash, zuccini, tomatoes, peppers

Once the soil warms up, I can direct seed the green beans.
I'll plant all the tomatoes into the two greenhouses we have set up. Most of the peppers will go in there too. I may have a few pots of peppers up on our porch, plus some flowers up there too....
One thing I can now do anytime is take geranium cuttings....we overwinter our neighbour's geraniums in our basement (we have room, and they do not)....and I am free to take as many cuttings I want for our own flower pots. I'll get this done in the next couple of days....the little geraniums can come upstairs and sit close to the windows, and they'll be fine.
A few years ago, I made up a list of all the veggies we grow, when I needed to start the seeds, the dates to maturity, now I can use that master list every year....
Looking at the list I can see the dates I need to start each and the first ones I'll be doing will be the pepper plant seeds on March 23. So I have lots of time, even tho I really would love to get started NOW. Until then, I guess I have to find other things to do!
Hopefully this list will give you an idea of what veggies can be direct seeded and what has to be started indoors! If you have questions, just leave them in the Comments section and I'll get back to you!
A couple of garden pics from last year to wet my appetite!

May 17th - the day I had the cabbage transplants put out.

June 16th - row covers on the Zuccini and the Beans, potatoes coming up on lower left.

July 5th - everything was popping!

August 25th - potatoes just barely starting to turn yellow, marigolds really pouring it on

Sept 7th - potatoes brown and withered (done!)

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Aunt Krissy said...

Do you frz your extra veggies?

ChristyACB said...

Your garden area is so neat and gorgeous! Even at the height of summer!

Annie said...

Krissy, yup, we do freeze some of the veggies, we do can most of them. I worry a bit about prolonged power outages, and feel safer with canning for this reason.

Christy, that is only because the pic is taken from quite a ways away, lol.....there are lots of weeds. One of my yearly goals is to keep increasing the time I spend weeding. If I didn't weed,it wouldn't take long at all for that whole veggie garden to revert back to the pasture it used to be! (I Hate weeding!)


Linda Foley said...

I don't know why I missed this post. WOW! I love the progress picture - very nice!

(See what happens when you use 'LinkWithin'?) LOL

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Sarah said...

Ah! You have Spring fever, just like I do! I simply cannot wait!

Beautiful garden! :)

Linda Foley said...

If had some gumption I could easily get out and work in the garden. There was only a short period of time in Dec that the ground was actually froze. It is still freezing at night slightly, 29*F which is really rather warm in comparison to others. I am going to get out and build my beds very soon... I will be starting some seeds soon also.

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