Growing tomatoes and peppers

on Wed, 03/23/2016 - 22:48

Tomatoes and peppers are hot weather plants. They really prefer it when the temperatures are warm. So that means if it's not warm where you're growing, it's going to take longer for them to germinate and grow. That means it is best to help them stay warm and their soil moist if you want them to do well.

These plants are some of the few that I do use the clear tray covers on when they are germinating. The lights above them help them to stay nice and warm inside the trays, which helps them to grow. But I've found that it is best if you do this with seedling trays that are not made of materials like peat or coconut, as those mold very quickly. I've never been successful with those kinds of pots under the clear covers. As long as they don't get over-watered, I've not had an issue with the traditional plastic seed cells and regular seedling soil. But if you're using other kinds of pots or material to grow the seeds in, you may run into issues.

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Planted more seeds

on Thu, 03/10/2016 - 22:41

Well, with the exception of cucumbers I think I'm just about done planting seeds for this season. I've done a few batches of peppers, tomatoes, squash, and eggplant, which should be enough to meet my needs and have plenty left over to sell. Every year I am too early with my cucumbers, which means my first batch dies because it is too cold outside when I move them outdoors. So this year I am purposefully waiting a few extra weeks before I start the seeds. Since I don't have any room inside for them, I can't be tempted to start them yet. I have a bunch more peas, beans, greens, and herbs to move outside, and once I do that I'll have room for the cucumbers. 

Here's some photos of my tomatoes and squash:

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Peas have moved outside

on Wed, 02/24/2016 - 23:12

IMG_0304.jpgSince the weather is getting nice outside, and my pea plants are getting big, it's time for them to go outside to get them hardened off. This will help them to get used to the cooler temperatures outside so that they are shocked by the colder dirt in the ground (or in the pots). They'll go outside for a part of the day each day until they're ready to be left outside entirely.

Thus far I have 55 plants outside. I'll be keeping some for myself, but the rest will be up for sale. Those are:

Sugar Snap: 10 plants 8 plants (2 ppu)

Oregon Giant (large podded snow pea w/ sweet peas): 17 plants

Burpeeana Early (3" pods with 8-10 sweet peas; prolific and early): 12 plants

Dwarf Grey Sugar (heirloom edible pod snow pea): 10 plants

Cascadia (sweet snap pea that grows on a short plant): 6 plants

These are $2/each and come in a ~3.25" pot.

Spring already?

on Mon, 02/15/2016 - 23:12

Well, seeing as we've been having warmer than usual temps in our area, and the long-term forecast seems to show the same, local weather forecasters are saying that it looks like winter is indeed behind us. That means it is time to get your gardens ready for the first seedlings of the spring season! This can include carrots, onions, peas, beans, greens, herbs, broccoli, and more!

I already have a lot of these going and am working hard to get them transplanted to larger containers so they have even more room to grow. Hopefully tomorrow I can get a count of how many of each of the items I have growing. I've already started a second batch of peas and beans and picked up some more seeds at the store since I'd run out. I also ordered some scarlet runner beans, as I had a request for them. Apparently they are quite pretty when in bloom.

I already have dibs on many of the peas and beans and need to find out how many more people want them. This way I can ensure that I have enough growing. Thankfully I have very good luck with peas and beans (near 100% germination rates), so the key is to get enough growing so that they are ready in time.

So if you want peas, beans, greens (various lettuces, spinch, kale, broccoli, various cabbages), or herbs, you should let me know ASAP so that I have enough growing for everyone. I know that I do have a lot of the Little Gems growing, which are a nice sized Romaine Lettuce. One head is often times just the right size for a meal. These have been my favorite of all the Romaine varieties I've tried. I probably have at least a couple dozen of these going right now, maybe more. I've got to finish transplanting and separating them so I can get an accurate count. Most people grow at least several of these at a time since they don't need a lot of room.

Did some transplanting

on Sun, 02/14/2016 - 23:07

Well, I couldn't sleep last night, so I figured I'd use the time to transplant some of the bigger plants over to pots that were of a larger size. These ones are about 2.5x2.5, which is nearly double the space they had in the containers they were in. Not only that, but when it comes to greens I have a very hard time putting just one seed in each pot because the seeds are so tiny. As such, the baby choi and romaine lettuce I transplanted often times had 3-5 plants growing in a single slot. I carefully separated them and put each into its own pot, which will allow them to grow much faster.

Plants are doing well

on Sun, 02/07/2016 - 23:07

Well, thus far my seedlings are doing quite well. Got a lot of growth over this past weekend. Loving the new timer I got for the grow light, as now I don't have to remember to turn them on and off - it does that for me. Certainly helps ensure that the lights are on for the right amount of time. 


A lot of growth

on Fri, 02/05/2016 - 23:07

It's amazing sometimes with plants how much growth you can get in just a day or so. I've highlighted some growth here that happened just within a day. I circled the corresponding cells since I had to flip around the tray so that those with growth would be closest to the light.


First seedlings of 2016!

on Sun, 01/31/2016 - 23:07

The other night I couldn't sleep, so I figured I could use the time to get my seedlings started. I had them in the dirt by about 5 a.m. on Thursday, January 28th. I planted:

  • bunching onions
  • basil
  • rosemary
  • parsley
  • cilantro
  • dill
  • chives
  • cabbage
  • baby bok choi
  • little gem romaine lettuce
  • salad select spinach
  • space hybrid spinach
  • bloomsdale spinach
  • red russian kale
  • lacinato kale
  • blue kale
  • new zealand spinach
  • broccoli
  • bibb lettuce
  • chinese cabbage
  • buttercrunch lettuce
  • sugar snap peas
  • cascadia snap peas
  • oregon giant peas

Plants are growing like crazy

on Wed, 03/25/2015 - 23:12

My plants have been growing like crazy. We've transplanted the zucchini and cucumbers outside and they're getting used to the temperature and such on the patio. We started getting a lot of rain and such after that, so I've been waiting to be able to do the squash and pumpkins so that I have the room to start moving my peppers and eggplants into bigger containers.