Sunday, April 10, 2011

First Plantings 2011

Last weekend I bought some organic garden soil to mix into the soil in the first area I planned to plant this year. Yesterday, I had planned to head down to the Bloomington Farmer's Market. It's my favorite place to buy seedlings in the spring and they are more likely to have organic than places locally. But Mother Nature had other ideas. It rained all morning so I skipped the farmer's market.

This morning Jeff and I headed out to Cox's Plant Farm and bought green and red cabbage seedlings as well as some head lettuce seedlings. Jeff talked me into getting a rhubarb plant and trying it. It will take up a good size portion of the garden and is a perennial that won't be ready to eat from until at least the second year. But I think we've proved we're in for the long haul when it comes to gardening, so we are ready to commit to perennial vegetables. Asparagus can't be far behind...

Anyway, there were other plants I wanted that Cox's didn't have so we headed back to town and went to the Garden Center at Lowe's. Something bugs me about buying garden plants at a Lowe's, but I've got to give them props. They had a lot more variety than Cox's did for the things that I wanted. I bought kale, swiss chard, spinach, and two more kinds of lettuce.

In the picture at the top you can see the spring bed that I've planted today. On the left side of the bed are 12 head lettuce plants, 4 Buttercrunch lettuce plants, and 4 Red Sails red leaf lettuce plants. Then next to the lettuce from top to bottom are 4 spinach plants, 4 swiss chard plants (Bright Lights), and 8 Winterbor kale plants. Finally, on the far right are 6 red cabbage and 4 green cabbage plants. They look a little wilty and it is really windy out today, but I've watered them and hope they perk up soon.

It is unseasonably warm for April. The average for this day in April is 59 degrees. Right now it is 82 degrees and the record high is 84. So there you go. For my plants' sake it needs to cool off just a tad. Plus I'm afraid I got too much sun, first time being back out in it and all.

Oh, and here's the rhubarb plant Jeff wanted. I imagine it will eventually take over the northeast corner of my garden.

One last thing. Return readers may wonder how the vole situation is going. Well, I did a lot of thinking about my options and our commitment to being as organic as possible. I guess I basically decided to do nothing. I've been checking the area quite a bit and it looks like the vole tracks are not new. I really haven't been able to see any evidence that makes me think they are still there. Of course they could be. But I am going to take a wait and see attitude. If they reappear, I will probably use mousetraps. But until then, I will just keep a close eye on things.

Today's weather:
High temp: 82
Low temp: 67
Very windy, chance of rain/thunderstorms overnight