Skip to main content

Planting Starts

I ordered seeds this week from the Territorial Seed Company, a local Northwest seed and plant supplier that supplies only non-genetically engineered seeds (where genetically engineered means "outside of natural reproductive methods"). I ordered corn, green beans, squash, spinach, carrots, and broccoli. Then, today I went to a plant sale that my garden planner was hosting and bought a bunch of starts: tomatoes, peppers, basil, and lettuce. So within a matter weeks to months, we could be harvesting food from our garden! Last year, we did almost all of our vegetables as starts, meaning we planted the seeds in small containers indoors before moving them outside to the garden. This gives the delicate sprouts a chance to grow a little bit before being exposed to the more variant outdoor weather. Doing your own starts is much cheaper than buying them, although a bit more work. It also allows you to plant your best plants into your garden, and to trade starts without wasting seeds like you would if you didn't plan the whole package, or planted them all and then had to thin a lot. Last year we were given starts of several vegetables that friends had extras of. This year, I plan to do some trading of starts and it looks like we're going to end up with a fantastic variety of fresh vegetables in our garden with a pretty small outlay of cash (not counting building the garden, that is!)


How to: To do your starts, just find a sunny spot in your house, fill a seed tray with good soil, and place a seed in each space. Instead of buying a new plastic tray, you could use old yogurt or any other plastic food containers, with a hole poked in the bottom. There are also small pots for starts that are made of fully biodegradable/compostable materials that can be planted directly into your garden! Water regularly to keep the soil moist, and watch your plants sprout up! Once they approach too big for their containers, either move them to a larger container or directly into your garden. Make sure to give them a good watering when you transplant, and I've heard it's best to do this in the morning or evening rather than full heat of the day.

More resources: The Territorial Seed catalog, which you can request for free, is a great source of information, as are their customer service representatives (by phone). Another good place for garden info is the Oregon State University extension service's gardening tips section. OSU extension agents also will answer questions if you go into an office, I've heard (if you are lucky enough to live in Oregon, that is).  I haven't yet found a really strong all-around resource for vegetable gardening online, but please share if you have a favorite. My top book is The Backyard Homestead, available on Amazon. I get a commission if you buy after clicking my link.

I'll be posting photos once I get my seeds in the mail. Can't wait!

Please share any tips you have for starting seeds -- I am still a novice gardener.

Comments

  1. I wish I had tips. I'm a novice gardener myself, and I have to sit out this year as we are moving in June. But I am curious to hear how your broccoli grows - I planted 4 hills of broccoli last year and they each only had heads the size of a silver dollar before they bolted. Not sure if it's something I did or just the growing season here. Good luck and have fun!

    ReplyDelete
  2. I had a similar experience with broccoli last year. Your comment reminded me to look that up, and broccoli is a cool season plant that will go to flower if the weather is too warm, according to my Western Garden book. We had such a hot summer last year! I only bought two plants of broccoli the other day, and I am now thinking I might wait until fall to plant the broccoli seeds I'm getting. Thanks for the well wishes!

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hello, I work for Territorial Seed Company and found your blog via google alerts. Just wanted to confirm that the reason your broccoli probably prematurely bolted was indeed due to the quick spike in temperatures that we got last summer. It can also be a result of environmental conditions such as erratic watering or extreme changes in temperature. At our trial grounds in Cottage Grove, OR, I have had MUCH better results growing broccoli as a fall crop-planting in the summer and harvesting in the fall/early winter when temps are cooler. We have a winter catalog that comes out in the beginning of June with varieties that have proven to grow well for fall harvests.

    Hope that this helps and happy gardening!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Stopping by from the cloth diaper board to follow along! Stop by soon, I have a huge cloth diaper giveaway coming soon! ;)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I have given you an award, stop by my blog to find out about it.

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

Summer 2020 - Life in a Pandemic

I'm in my final week of summer before work as a middle school teacher begins again. This time of year I'm always in a reflective mood.  I look back and feel so lucky to have had this time with my kids. We went camping, biking, boating, golfing, and hiking. We celebrated my sister's wedding, we did projects together, watched movies, and just hung out at home. It really was everything that summer is meant to be. There were many events and plans that we canceled due to Covid, but we did all the most important things. We missed friends, but I also reveled in the togetherness with my little family unit. Today, I spent time registering for fall childcare and activities. It's less than usual, but still I can see the pace of our lives picking up. As we move into a season of more busy-ness, more work, and likely more stress, this poem sums up the feelings I'm experiencing.... Vacation End by Leslie Pinckney Hill From the charm of radiant faces, From the days we took to dream

Woollybottoms Giveaway

I am hosting my first giveaway! I have been wanting to do this for a while, and I'm so pleased to have it finally planned. The item I chose to give is a new pair of Woollybottoms - wool pants for babies. The retail value of these is $29.00. I have been really into the wool pants thing lately, as you may have noticed from my recent posts (about Nifty Knickers , and my baby blue longies ) so this seems like a good fit. Wool pants can be used as a cloth diaper cover, or just as snuggly warm pants for the winter or for bedtime. These ones are "footies" so they should keep your baby toasty! The pair I am giving to one lucky winner is light blue with fish fabric for the footie part. Maybe a little more boyish than girlie, but Stella would definitely wear these if we got to keep them. They are size medium, and have the following measurements: 8" waist (elastic) 9" rise 18" length Here they are: To enter, simply comment below and let me know why you wan

Naming of things

So, in my “ First Post ” I said that I picked the name of my blog randomly from a list I’d brainstormed. That’s not quite true. I actually made a long list of possible names, and then finally came up with one that I liked, and went with it. While it was not exactly a random choice, I didn’t put massive amounts of time into thinking it through. Now that I’ve committed to it I think I really do like it. (If I don’t, I can always start a new one, right? It only took about 5 minutes to set this up.) The reasons I think this name works for me: It has my new nickname, and my daughter’s top nickname It expresses the idea that this is something that I’m creating, or “making” My daughter does have to be included in this because much of what I plan to write about is inspired by her, and she has to give me the time to write for it for it to work It somewhat obscures my identity for public readers who don’t know me and might want to someday look me up and stalk me and my family (that’s assum