The weather finally cooperated (for a couple of days) and I was able to get outside and dig some things up! And put some things in. I finally got our peony bed dug out (and planted some Swiss Chard, beets, cilantro and dill among the peonies that were finally starting to come up).
I planted some kale starts (red, italian and wild) and those went into three different beds (planted with some garlic) - and they are spaced apart pretty well so it should be easy to control the slug population. . .always a problem with leafy greens in our yard. . .
I also put in some blueberries into some tires on the other side of our yard (where the sunflowers, potatoes and corn will eventually go, amidst some small flowers), and I sowed some colombines, daikon radish, culinary poppies and my 4th different try for purple coneflower. If none of my purple coneflower comes up, I'll break down and buy the plant so I wont have to deal with this again!.
So as of right now, ALL of our beds have something worthwhile in them (and growing!) and all I have left to prepare is the beds onthe other side of the yard, and do some maintenance in the herb bed (which won't be the herb bed when I'm done with it). And then I can start inside and on our deck.
Since today is a little too soggy out for me to get in the garden, I'm inside, updating this blog and getting housework done.
I took Lily for a walk this morning, before it started dumping too hard and when we got back, we did a little inspection of the outside. . .checked in on the Irises I planted last night (gotta love gardening by deck light) and some of the bluebells, raspberries and strawberries.
Lily loves the bluebells. . .even though it looks like she's trying to poop on them. . .
The Irises were purchased from another lovely lady Gardener in Bellevue at a great price ($2 per tuber). And we went a little crazy, of course, and got $12 worth for $10 since the one I really wanted, she wasn't sure she had, but we did leave with some white, dark purple, brown/rust, and maybe a lavender. . .the whites I am saving for something special and the brown/purples I planted by some of the bluebells under the tree. . .I wasn't sure about the light, but I dug where there was grass so I'm assuming that if the grass grows, there's enough light for the irises in the same spots, right? And I potted one for the deck. We'll see how that does. In the pot, I put a tbsp. or so of Fish Bone Meal directly under the tuber (as per the instructions on the box). The ones I planted in the ground I put no Fish Bone Meal in adn the light is similar. . .so it's battle of the soil.
Does Fish Bone Meal REALLY work? Probably, but now I'll have proof!
The strawberries we got from a lovely lady in Bothell who shared her Everbearing strawberries with us at the bargain price of $1 per plant! So, of course, we got 5 since it's such a great deal, but I want to put them in a tire that we have. . .and there's only room for 3. So I shared our extra with my friend who shared her bluebells with me. I think it's a good deal. ;o)
The "new" strawberries
And our raspberries are coming back. . .I was a little worried there for a minute. All the canes looked dead for a good long while there. . .but they're budding so I figured we're good to go!
You can't really tell in the picture, but there are some new leaf buds popping up on the canes, as well as new shoots coming up from the ground.
Oh! And I've decided to change up my plan for the new beds. Instead of putting a 9' x 9' bed in the back corner, I think I wanna add a border to the fenceline first (gets better light than the corner), and maybe expand to the corner next year. I figure the 1st tire will house a blueberry bush (and maybe the 2nd, or 3rd - just haven't decided which one yet -- OR -- I may just add another tire in front of the empty fence post in between the 1st & 2nd tires) and the rest will be potatoes, when they're ready to go out. No luck sprouting them yet - as it turns out, that process is only super easy when you DON'T want it to happen.
And I still need to compile my noted from my seedlings re: progress. . .since it doesn't look like it'll stop raining any time soon, I just may have time today to get that done. . .
11 February 2011 Round 4 - Day 0 Round 3 - Day 1 Round 2 - Day 23 Round 1 - Day 28
My daytime plans fell through this morning which has left me with an overcast day with hours of unexpected free time on my hands. The result: more seeds to start. Well, and a little clean up as well. I've been so busy that my gardening area was getting a little cluttered and was screaming for some organization.
So after I cleaned all my containers for transplanting up and starting seeds in and prepared them for soil and all that, I mixed up my standard mix for seedlings and got to work. The Mesclun Mix went into another of the red containers that I've got, and this time instead of covering the seeds with more of that standard mix, I covered with straight potting soil. It seems to me that the sprouts would have an easier time popping up without obstacles in their way.
I also am trying to start some bell peppers from seeds that I saved from an organic green bell pepper and mini yellow and red sweet peppers I bought from the store. These guys are just for fun. Hopefully they grow and produce and will save me from procuring some sweet pepper seeds, but if they dont, at least I'll not be out anything but some potting soil. ;o)
I also found some blueberries that never got planted last year, still stored in the peat and plastic in the burlap sack, so I took those out and planted them some pots. I was going to put them outside in tires, but when I took them out of the plastic and peat, they kind of disintegrated so all I had to work with was a small root ball with a tiny dried out stick sticking out of it. For these guys, I mixed up 1 part Fish Bone Meal with 3 parts Aged Steer Manure and 3 parts Potting Soil to see if that may help bring them back to life. I'm hoping since they were store properly that they may still come back, but we shall see. . .
And then I decided to change my potato set up for chitting (thanks for the info, bsmitch!) and moved the potatoes to an egg carton and covered them with a damp paper towel. . .switched it up now instead of waiting cuz it just makes sense to me to add a little moisture (paper towel) and air flow (egg carton). So here's how that looks now. . .
And I almost forgot. . .I decided to move the Kale upstairs to the dining room since that first seedling has yet to emerge from the soil, and nothing is happening in the other 3 bottles. Hopefully the light and heat upstairs will motivate them to get to growing! haha
And then I've got updates and growth charts for seed started in Rounds 1 & 2, but I just haven't had time to type it up, so I'll probably do that later, after I make my oatmeal chocolate chip cookies. Gotta love the unexpected free days!