Sunday, January 11, 2009

New Beginnings...

Those December showers are sure to bring March flowers. The rain may not do much to cure the drought but is sure to set us up for an amazing spring blooms. With the on-off rains, seeds are an ideal venture. For just a few bucks you can get some wonderful interesting seeds and make a whole lot of plants.

I always sow seeds in a variety of locations around the garden just to see what areas provide the best conditions. The key to good seed germination is steady even moister, so you may need to be ready to hand water a couple times each day for about a week until the seeds sprout. One good way to get them kick started is to set out your seeds just before the rains are expected. (Rain water is the most magical of garden elixirs!) Nature will get things started; you will just have to keep an eye on the seeds and make sure the soil stays moist. And avoid puddling. Excess water can wash away seeds or keep them afloat avoiding soil contact, which is what they need to root. If you have a drip system set-up, you’ll certainly get seeds happening.

I also recently learned something interesting about seeds – they can go bad! So if you have some seeds from a friend from last spring who got them from her mom as a graduation gift, don’t expect too much from them. I wouldn’t get rid of them; just plant them amongst some fresh new seeds of a different variety, that way you’ll know who’s old and who’s new when things start to bloom.

Most seeds show visible signs of growth in a couple of weeks to a month. And do yourself a favor – make a sketch of the area and note what was planted where and write down the date. You could also make plant labels by re-purposing some take-out dining sporks – write on the handle with a Sharpie and stick it in the ground.

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