In the Beginning

IMG_3016Seed starting

Every year that I garden, I get one step closer to being self sufficient. The first year I put regular seeds that I bought from walmart into the ground. The next year I found http://www.rareseeds.com/ which are heirloom seeds (meaning you can take the seeds from the plants you grow to grow things the next time, as opposed to having to buy new seeds every year). Then I started seeds that year in my house and transplanted them out later. This year I went crazy and then found out about making pots from old newspaper. One call to grandma and I saved a lot of money using what she would have put in her recycling bin. Here’s a link if you are interested in doing this. http://permaculturenews.org/2014/05/06/three-ways-make-newspaper-seed-starter-pots/ hardening off In the background of this picture you can see the two food grade barrels that use to have olives in them. I bought them, with plans to turn them into rain barrels. My gutters will drain into these, and my hose will hook up to them for me to water my plants. It will be awesome. Here’s a link on how to do that: http://www.rainbarrelguide.com/ I also have been using a site to help me prep my garden every year. It is my favorite site for planning a garden. It also has a world of information on different seeds, where and when they grow best, what attacks them, when to harvest, how to harvest, how much sun they need, what nutrients they need, etc., etc., the list goes on and on. You will never regret using this site, with the exception that you may become addicted. http://www.smartgardener.com/ Just this year I was given a huge seed starting system. Four racks with four trays each. If I used the 72 seed starting trays in each one, that would be 1,152 seeds that I could start. There are adjustable grow light above each rack of trays. It’s really quite insane! I am so excited!!! Anyways, a year ago my dad was given a ton of larger pots. I have used some, given a bunch away, and yet still have more, which is great, because I see expansion in my future. This year I started doing some herbs. I have found some to be simple and others to be impossible (almost – I don’t quit easy). I especially don’t quit easy because in 3 years of trying this was my first successful year for eggplant and for Chinese five color peppers. I still haven’t gotten good at ancho poblano, and I’m only slightly more successful with cucumbers (which I’m told are easy – ps not in my experience). Anyways, i want to share my years of knowledge with others who once were afraid to garden, because they were just certain they would fail. Like somehow plants would choose not to grow for them, even though a lot of them require little care. I hope some of this is helpful and would love to answer questions if you should have any.

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