Thursday, April 7, 2011

Let Gardening Season Begin!

 Since it's snowing this morning, it seems like a good time to talk about the garden. The garlic is coming up
Our square foot garden beds are off and running:
or growing.  They got a bit of a head start because I bought lettuce, broccoli, and kohlrabi plants, but I am happy to announce that I have radishes, spinach, and two types of lettuce coming up all on their own.  Granted, they're too small to be identifiable in pictures just yet, but they are there.  I swear.

And in case you were wondering why we had to buy plants when we got a free greenhouse last year--we still haven't been able to figure out how to make the door work.  The thing is a cheap piece of plastic sold at Walmart, so we knew not to expect much, but when it became obvious that we were going to have to put more into it to make it work than it was even worth, we opted for
a new greenhouse entirely.  This is what it looked like when we set it up.  Thinking we would move it to a permanent location, we didn't stake it we spent a fun-filled evening chasing it across the yard when high winds sent it sailing.  And breaking one of the zippers for the door flap. 

We are not people to be outdone by such mundane things as a greenhouse, so Andy was in charge of making sure it wouldn't fly off again,
and I am replacing the zipper.  
It's not going to look as nice as the original,
but since it had to be replaced anyway, I ordered "marine tape" in the biggest width possible--complete with nonrusting zipper.  I don't know exactly how zippers are rated, but if there IS a withstands-charging-rhinocerous level of zipperdom, this is the zipper I'm using.  I ordered enough tape to do the second side when and if it fails as well.  I originally tried just special ordering a new cover, but since the clerk at Bi-Mart said she would have the manager call me when he came in over a month ago, either the manager fled the country THAT VERY DAY and left by the garden center exit so he could take a supply of petunias with him, or Bi-Mart has really crappy service and doesn't care if I remain a customer or not.  Either way, ordering zipper tape and replacing it has actually been the faster route, and will be better in the long run. 

In the meantime:
we decided to try "wall of waters" for some of the tomatoes.  It says it takes 7 to 10 days for the water to heat the ground enough to add the tomato plants, so it should be ready tomorrow, or even today, but I don't think tomatoes should be planted in the snow.  I'm old fashioned that way, I guess.  The square-foot gardening theory for tomatoes is to viciously trim them into one single stalk that can be trellised, which we'll try with a later tomato, but I'm not quite certain about that part, so we will also have a standard tomato patch as well.  After the last 2 years, it's hard to be intimidated by the prospect of having too many tomatoes. 

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You know you've reached a whole new level of gardening when you receive a wholesale catalog.....