March 30, 2009

Birth of a Blog & Cool Tools

Birth of a Garden Blog
I am finally starting a garden blog. Not because I think I have anything interesting to say but rather because I have a hell of a time keeping track of my comings and goings.

The experiments come in many facets - testing new veggies in the garden, planting the same item in different spots to see what does best where, and other such nonsense which may not matter much to anyone but it sure keeps me amused. Haha!
So since Spring is around the corner, I figure I will dust off my garden gear.

Cool Tools
I don't prescribe to having a tool for every task. I tend to have my favorites and often they turn into multi-purpose tools. One of my favorites is a 3 pronged thingy that I believe is called a cultivator. Yes - that is what it is called cuz the picture to the right says so. I use this baby for loosening weeds, turning soil, mixing fertilizer into the soil and most recently for personal injury. I have the long handled version and that really opens the door to a Larry, Curly & Moe moment. Let me put it this way, wearing foam type sandal in the garden is not a great idea.

My most recent cool tool is......virtual. It's an online garden plan that allows you to draw your garden, add the plants and include all the details, such as variety, plant date, harvest time, yada yada. It is my nature to be anal (pardon me - I do not mean to be
offensive) about these things but at the end of a day spent digging in the dirt, turning compost, etc., making notes tends to lose out over taking a shower and chillaxing. This works for me. I can watch TV while my hair dries AND make notes about my garden activities! How cool is that? Works for me. Check it out at plangarden.

March 29, 2009

Spring has Sprung!

Welcome Spring! Finally!

After a rather wicked winter the garden is awakening! Spring bulbs are readying to burst open with color. The unmistakable smell of hyacinth will soon be wafting in the air. I love all Spring flowers but hyacinths......yummy. Tulips won't be far behind! Whew-hew!

Yesterday was a beautiful day - time to kick start the garden!


Installed the small cold frame in the veggie bed. This was fashioned out of wood with an old window hinged on top. I must give credit where credit is due because this would never have happened without the help of my neighbor Colin (I am forbidden from using power tools that have the potential to remove my limbs). Thank you Colin.

The first seeds to go in were:
  • Cabbage - Earliana
  • Cauliflower - Early Snowball
  • Spinach - Baby's Leaf
  • Lettuce - Sweet Salad mix includes Black Seeded Simpson, Green & Red Salad Bowl, Marvel of Four Seasons and Bibb
  • Lettuce - Looseleaf Blend includes BSS and G&RSB plus Royal Oak Leaf, Lolla Rosa and Salad Bowl
Feeling a little adventurous I thought I would direct sow in the garden next to the cold-frame to compare the results. I smell an "experiment" . How clever is that! Ha!

While puttering in the garden I observed the leeks that I planted last summer. To my amazement they survived a New England winter and actually seemed quite content - they looked good and smelled even better. Now, about leeks......last summer was the 1st time that I ever grew them, if "grow" is what you want to call it. They were planted as 1" starts last June and by season's end the were rather pathetic looking - perhaps 1/3" in diameter. Contrary to my nature, I did NOT yank them in the Fall but rather I decided to leave them be. Hmmmm.....I am interested to see what happens. If this is the kind of growth schedule that they are on, I guess I now know why they are so expensive in the store.