Wednesday, December 28, 2011

It's a Jungle in There!

Christmas is over and in a few short weeks it will be time to plant our winter/spring garden. We have a weird planting schedule here in the desert.The garden goes in at the beginning of February to make sure we get a good crop before the triple digit temperatures start to stunt our progress. Because we put things in the ground early and the temperatures are still a bit cool, we find that we have more success planting established plants rather than directly sowing our seeds in the soil. There are some exceptions of course, namely lettuce, spinach, carrots, radishes, onions and garlic. We can put those right in the dirt without issue. But for most of our plants, we like them to have a little head start to ensure a bountiful crop.

In years past, we have sewn a few seeds but depended heavily on our local nursery for starts. But this  year, we chose to grow our own starts to a)save money b)add more variety to the garden and c)ensure the plants are grown without pesticides or chemical fertilizers. My husband bought a grow light for our little DIY nursery and together with our son, planted what will become this year's garden.We moved our little soon-to-be seedlings to the back bedroom and waited.

Planting seeds in the living room

That was four weeks ago. Our seeds sprouted quickly thanks to the unintentional micro- climate we created. Opening the door is like walking into a jungle...warm, humid and full of plants. The seedlings quickly outgrew their sprouting spaces and had to be moved to larger "pots" which we created with leftover party cups and a Dremel. A project that started out occupying half a wall has taken over the entire space!

I need a wide angle lens...this is only a quarter of it!
Soon it will be time to start hardening off our seedlings in preparation for planting. I'm pretty proud that we grew every single plant that will be in the garden. The only reason we'll need to hit up the nursery is for steer manure. I'm certainly ready to get my sewing room back too, and for the smell of organic compost to vacate the premises. Here's to a bountiful harvest!



  1. Good work! I've been trying to grow most of my plants from seeds this year too, it requires to much patience and careful planning, so sometimes I have to buy a few seedlings to fill a gap, but otherwise I love saving money and using/saving heritage seeds.

  2. Ok. Wait a minute. Are you a Green too? And can I tell you how jealous I am that you can plant soon? In CO we have to wait until after Memorial Day. That seems soooooo far away right now.

  3. I'm a Green Andrea! Are you? Perhaps we're related in some round about way :)

  4. I have a small garden and can't plant until after Memorial Day, either. I am hoping to start my seeds inside (we have a fantastic sunroom that will work wonderfully for this) if I can motivate myself! I already have all of the supplies, just need to buy seeds!