Saturday, April 3, 2010

What's Old Dave been up to in the Garden

I've always been told that potatoes need to be in the ground by Good Friday. I didn't quite make it. How about Good Saturday before Easter Sunday? I was looking around for a good buy on Yukon Gold potatoes which are my favorite. Lowes had a bag of 6 little spuds for $3. Are you kidding? I had a meeting in Council Bluffs and decided afterward to take a trip to one of my favorite nurseries in C.B. to check out the spud situation. Oh be still my heart. Would you believe 45 cents a pound. For a little more than $6.00 I brought home 15 pounds of precious seed spuds. I soon realized that was way too much and probably could have gotten by with about 5 pounds. That's a lot of potatoes for a 4 foot by 8 foot patch of ground.

I loaded up the garden bed with as many potatoes as I could and still had a fourth of bucket left over. Next year I'll know not to buy so many. As the plants grow they need to have staw around them to keep the potatoes from peeking out of the ground and turning a toxic green. No eating green potatoes for me. That's the plan anyway. Keep them covered with straw.
My plan for the new garden beds has worked so far. Last fall I filled up two new beds with heaping piles of the last lawn mowing of the season. It was mixture of crunched up leaves and grass. Over the Winter the heaping pile composted down to well below the top level of the bed. This allows for the second step of the plan which is to fill up the bed with top soil. It will be a good eight inches of top soil on top of the composting leaving and grass. It should be good for what ever grows there. This bed I'm working on will be onions and bell pepper plants. It's just a smidge to early for the peppers.
There's just nothing like a good onion on, well, anything. I decided to plant Texas Sweet and Red Onion. The rest of this bed will be filled and planted in about another 3 to 4 weeks. I will contain the pepper plants and they need to be planted after Mother's Day. No frost for them or it will be death. It's really good to be out digging in the dirt again. I really need to expand my garden again as I'm running out of space fast.
Update on starting the seeds.
Well I believe the process of starting seeds was correct but the end result was a big flop. The lessoned learned was always ALWAYS check your seed to see if it's good seed. After not getting good results from the little green house, I decided to check the seed to see if it could be sprouted. I placed about 6 or 8 seeds on a paper towel, folded it over, moistened it will a sponge, put the whole thing inside a ziploc bag and placed it on the heat mat. It should only take about 5 to 7 days to sprout a tomato seed. After 10 days still not a single seed sprouting. Dang Walmart seeds anyway. I have one more shot at growing tomato plants and then it will be back to the big box store for plants.