Monday, March 7, 2011

Planting Time

You know what I'm excited about this month?  Planting the garden.  Last year was the first time we planted this early, and we've never had such a good yield.  You can plant radishes, carrots, lettuce, onions, peas, spinach, and more as soon as the ground is workable, which means right now in my neck of the woods.  It felt so good to get out there this weekend and start prepping the soil.  Ah, it's good for the soul to play in dirt.  Not to mention the fact that being able to plant now makes it feel like spring is here early.  If you want to start your own garden now, here's a little of my advice, amateur though I am, which most of you probably already know but I'm going to say it anyway:

For radishes and carrots:  Give 'em room to stretch.  Make sure your soil is deeply dug, loose and is free of rocks or you might get some misshapen carrots (which actually could be kind of cool for Halloween).  Plant radish and carrot seeds mixed together in the same rows to help with thinning--the radishes will be ready to harvest right as it's time to thin the carrots.  Finally, keep them well watered.

For lettuce and spinach:  Too little water makes for bitter greens.  The faster they grow, the better they'll taste, so make sure to give them enough to drink.

For onions:  Cheat a little--don't start from seed.  I plant my onions from onion "sets" which are small bulbs about 1" in diameter because I'm not sure our growing season is long enough to grow them from seeds.  Push the bulbs into the soil until it's covered, and make sure the stem is pointing up.  Harvest later in the summer when the stalks have dried and fallen over. 

For peas:  Make them feel wanted.  The more you harvest the pea pods off a plant, the more it will produce.  On the other hand, leave them too long on the plant and production will slow.

You can find more good, basic info to start with from Darin Engh on Studio 5

Anyone else have something they like to do to ease them through these last weeks of winter?


  1. I'm always so excited to see any update to your blog (yeah, I check daily--sheesh, Rachel! Get a life!) Love ya!

  2. Loved your gardening post. Great tips. Get them coming.