Thursday, March 7, 2013


I got my Fedco seed order a couple of weeks back. I ordered fewer seeds this year, because I am learning what I actually want in the garden.

My family pretty much only eats peas fresh, and no one actually wants to shell enough peas to make a pot of them. That means we will just plant sugar snaps, and probably almost all of them will be eaten before they even make it into the house. I will freeze a few quarts for soups, but I'm only planting about 30 feet of peas. I also decided that the taller peas do actually taste and produce better.

By August, we've been a little tired the past couple of years, and the green beans have not been picked as thoroughly or as often as they deserve. However, I canned green beans last year, and the children are gung ho to have more for next winter. Everyone has agreed to help me keep them picked and then to help me get them processed. I am still planting fewer; I think we all get overwhelmed when confronted by so many green beans. Once we have one successful year of harvest past us, I think I can plant more. Green beans are another where I think the taller ones do actually grow and produce and taste better. Also, ten foot tall green beans that reach across the path to twine with other green beans make a magical, shady place in the garden.

I am only planting three varieties of tomatoes. I like Amish paste tomatoes, Rutgers, and one or two RED slicers. I am also only planting 20 plants. I'll also plant a couple of watermelons and a dozen pepper plants in the green house. Most of the peppers will be King of the North bell peppers or early jalapenos, as these are the types we eat the most of. There will also be a couple of cayennes and a paprika pepper for some variety in the salsa.

I started onion seeds, and they were looking great. Nico knocked one tray off, so I ordered more of those seeds. I also went to a refresher on Bionutrient food production and realized I probably started my onions too early. So, I'll wait a bit longer once those seeds arrive, and then I'll compare my results.

I am planting fewer kohl crops this year. I'll do a whole row of rutabagas, Brussels sprouts, and cabbage. No one in our house seems to particularly care for broccoli or kale. I keep thinking I might plant a little kale, because it IS so tasty sauteed with pine nuts, onions, and raisins. But maybe not.

Carrots and beet will get more attention this year. I've grown just a few every year. The carrots actually did well least year, but I planted only enough for fresh eating, because I had had no luck the previous two summers. Last year's success makes me feel more confident. Same thing for the beets.

There will be a little chard, some sunflowers, some spinach, a little celery, some celeriac for storage, two 60 foot beds of winter squash, a couple of summer squash plants mostly for the cow's enjoyment, a few cucumbers, and then of course potatoes.

The potatoes I ordered just this past weekend. I am getting three varieties, and I think I did a better job ordering the right amount for the space I'm planting.

I'm not planting any corn this year.

I am planting more cover crops. Some I'll plant soon and let them grow until it's time to put warm weather things in. A few beds will be planted directly in cover crops and devoted to soil building this year. I'm hoping to build humus this way and use less compost.

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