Garden dreamin': Tips for early garden plotting
No matter what time of year, I'm pondering and planning about growing – vegetable growing and growing my inner self. Living on the mile-high plains of Colorado, after growing up in the mid-Atlantic area, learning to grow veggies at any time of year is challenging! The hail, quick temperature changes, snow on Mother's Day and early autumn freezes make things interesting.
Have you been perusing the seed catalogues all winter, adding each one to the stack as they arrive in the mail? Do these few weeks of early March winds and unseasonably warm temps have your planting juices going? I don't know about you, but I can hardly contain myself.
It's a little early to start those seedlings, especially if you plan to put the tomato plants out the end of May (remember the last two Mother's Days?) You could, however, plot plan. Think:
- How much space do I have available?
- Do I need to amend the soil?
- What do I like to eat/cook/share with others?
- How much time do I realistically have to care for what I grow?
After answering those questions, draw your plan on paper, as much to scale as possible. While you're planning, remember to leave walkways to easily care for your plantings without tromping down soil near their roots. Check out the wealth of info on the back of seed packets: seed depth, spacing, timing and much more.
Consider using an online garden planner. I use the planner from Old Farmer's Almanac, and there are others. After many seasons of drawing on graph paper, I appreciate the ease and accuracy of an online planner. It automatically builds a plant list for me and calculates how many plants fit into a given space. It also tells me when I can start the seed and when it should be ready for harvest.
Move on from dreamin' and perusing; start creating.
Three Anythink locations have community gardens:
- Anythink Commerce City has openings; contact firstname.lastname@example.org
- Anythink Perl Mack; please contact email@example.com
- Anythink Wright Farms currently has a waiting list; contact firstname.lastname@example.org
For those community gardeners and customers who applied for free seeds and seedlings, watch for the seed pickup informoation this March.
Punxsutawney Phil has seen an early spring, and I think I agree with him. Hmmm, maybe I could start those cabbage and broccoli seedlings tomorrow... What do you think?