Spring is in the wind – starting plants for the garden

Exciting, isn’t it! Spring is coming – even here at 7800 ft. The mountains still have some snow, so needed for the parched land. The melt will replenish the streams which will renew the rivers coming out of the Rockies.

My eyes and thoughts are on the garden. The first two years here were all experiment. I’m from Massachusetts – sea level, temperate climate, long season, and plenty of rain. Jaroso, Colorado is high, dry, and dry again. It’s not desert, but without water only sage grows.

Most of the vegetable and flower plants this year will be from seeds gathered from last year’s bounty, either mine or my friend, Vicki’s.  Our season is June 1-Sept 15. Killing frost or snow can happen on the edges of those time frames and, certainly after mid September. So, anything requiring more than 60 days to ripen needs to be started early and be established plants when they go in the ground. The tomato seeds are in motion.

Because all the vegetable seeds used this season are from produce harvested last season, there is no knowing what percentage are viable. For example, if squashes cross-pollinate some varieties don’t reproduce – but others do just fine. So, I am germinating all vegetable seeds on organic cellulose mats as if I were growing hydroponically. Then as they establish a primary root, they go into starter pots and good organic starter soil.

Here’s what I’ve done with the tomato seeds, in case anyone wants to play with this method. Nine varieties, all organic, most are heirloom.

About Donna Mitchell-Moniak

Visit www.blazinglight.net for additional meditations and blog posts.
This entry was posted in gardening. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply