Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Garden journal: Growing your own seedlings

I am sorry for my long absence from blogging. Spring has always been the busiest time of the year for me. I'm sowing seeds like a maniac, planting seedlings in the garden, fighting with snails and slugs and other garden pests, spring cleaning, and fiddling and finessing the garden with new plants for summer. Yeah, you get the idea.

With this post I want to start a garden journal series where I write about all the things I do and grow in my garden. 

Kitchen garden:

First we increased the planting space by building raised beds around the existing kitchen garden.

Soaking seeds in a small bowls has been a common sight on my kitchen counter over the  last 6-8 weeks. I have been soaking and planting seeds in my little green house that my husband created for me with just four posts covered with a white garden cloth to increase the temperature for the seeds to germinate (more on that subject in future posts).

Soaking the seeds helps them germinate faster. The soaking method only works for bigger and tougher seeds, such as gourds and beans. Don't try to soak small seeds like tomatoes.

Here is a picture of where I am growing seedlings in the garden tent. I save all the containers that I used from previous years and used them to germinate this years seedling. I hate to think of putting all that plastic in the garbage. I try to reuse and re-purpose things as much as I can. 

There are challenges and advantages to growing your own seedlings. The challenges are that you have to think about growing seedlings way in advance. In California, you need to start in January. For me, it was challenging to think about having a vegetable garden in January. The advantages are that you can grow a myriad of vegetables in your own garden. The regular nurseries won't carry all the seedlings that you want to grow. I can't find seedlings for Indian snake gourds, red okra, bitter melon or different varieties of Asian eggplants from just any nursery. This year, I attempted to grow my own seedlings for tomatoes and peppers as well, which I used to buy instead of grow.  
Have you started your kitchen garden yet? If so please share what you have learned from your gardening experience.

There are lots of posts in the pipeline about the kitchen garden. Stay tuned.
Sharring at:

1 comment:

  1. this inspires me. I haven't started any seedlings yet...we have a long growing season so I can still do it if I hurry...I have planted beans and some tomatoes in the garden. looking forward to your posts...