Monday, April 13, 2015

Let the Spring Projects Begin!!

I apologize for my being tardy with this post, I managed to end up with a bit of the flu and had no inspiration for writing.  Well, I’m back and raring to tell you about all the spring projects we have going and are on the To Do List!

Project #1: Seed Starting

So far I’ve planted:

Tomatoes: Various varieties.  Slicing tomatoes, cherry tomatoes, paste tomatoes (essentially a Roma but, not quite as juicy.  Cooks down to make great tomato paste, or so that’s what I’ve been told.) Then, I have Tomatillos because I LOVE salsa verde.  Although, I suppose it won’t be salsa ‘verde’ when made with purple tomatillos.  Last but not least I was introduced to Ground Cherries last year so, I HAD to add them to my garden this year, yum!!  They look like a small tomatillo only orangy/yellow and much sweeter.

Peppers:  Red Bell peppers, Jalapenos and Poblanos.

Broccoli:  For some reason I’ve never gotten the hang of broccoli but, I keep trying.  I might get 1 crown of broccoli per plant but, it never gets that big.  

Cabbage (Green and Red) and Brussels Sprouts:  Because my record keeping tends to be lax and my plant markers never seem to last long or never even make it to the row they should be marking, I may or may not have dug up and composted Brussels Sprouts in the past not remembering what the plant actually was.  Note to self, Brussels Sprouts are cool weather plants needing 120 days to mature!  They won’t look like much for a LONG TIME!!!

Cucumbers:  Lots and Lots of cucumbers.  I’m over planting this year partly to see if seeds from last year and even the year before will still sprout and partly because cucumbers are one of the few vegetables that Farm Kid #2 will actually eat!!!

Eggplants: I tried them for the 1st time last year with not much luck.  So, trying again with my leftover seeds.

Kohlrabi:  What’s that you might ask?  Well, I’m really only vaguely familiar with it myself  However, yet again, I have a friend whose kids love it so, because I’m trying to find anything my kids might eat I’m giving it a go.  High Mowing Organic Seeds says: Creamy white bulbs with crisp texture and attractive dark green leaves. “It’s a root, it’s a tuber… no, it’s a super stem!” says Mother Earth News. Interior flesh quality holds well in the spring and fall, but is not recommended for summer harvest. Shred for a sensational coleslaw. Spring/fall crop • 3-5” bulbs. (Brassica oleracea var. gongylodes)

Summer squash:  Just zucchini for me this year.  We are the weirdos who don’t really eat a lot of summer squashes.  I’d love some inspired recipes if anyone is so inclined to send some my way to make me really re-think summer squash.  

Watermelon: Sugar Baby is a small dark skinned watermelon, very sweet.  The way watermelon should be!

Winter squash: Butternuts, spaghetti squash and sugar pumpkins.  Every year I vow to can my own pumpkin and have yet to do it.  Will 2015 be my year?  We’ll have to wait and see.

Parsley, cilanto and basil of course.  Summer isn’t complete without herbs in the garden.  We already have Oregano, Sage and thyme as those are pretty hardy perennials, at least at my house.

Calendula: I hope to harvest some to make tinctures and salves this year.  Unfortunately, I say that every year and it has yet to happen.  Can you see the trend?

I think that’s it for seed starting.  I will plant directly outside seeds for beets, spinach, lettuce, kale, carrots, green beans (take note Lucy and Becky), and corn.

Project #2: Clean Up

The small hoop houses on the side of the house need a little sprucing up.  We’ll get some plastic over the tops of these so that we can get some spinach, lettuces, and kale into the ground soon.

The greenhouse Farm Dad made, on the other hand, needs a bit more serious overhaul.  We had heavy duty plastic covering this frame and, obviously, it did not make it through the winter.  But, we had two years of use before the plastic was shredded so, that’s not bad.

Then, on the short list of things to do is general maintenance of landscaping around the house.  This winter was not kind to our boxwood.  They were due to be cut back some anyway along with, the princess spirea in the foreground.

This is what I’m looking at on Sunday April 12, 2015 from my computer desk.  While there are quite a number of projects we need to get going on there are still those that have to wait until the snow really does melt!

What’s on your short list of projects this spring?  

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