It seems like all I’ve been talking about lately is the weather. But isn’t that often the case with us gardeners? Last year spring was running about 30 days ahead of schedule. This year it’s running about 30 days behind normal. I’m starting to feel like I’m a character in Waiting For Godot, standing by a tree and musing about life while waiting for Godot to show up. Except in my case, I’m waiting on spring to make an appearance, and killing time by singing Happy Birthday to my cat and getting on my wife’s nerves!
I have taken advantage of every possible warm-ish, sunny day to try and do a little gardening. Last week I was able to clean out two of my cold frame beds and plant some lettuce seedlings in one and Asian greens in the other. The Asian greens include Fun Jen, Yukina Savoy, Senposai, Mei Qing and Red Choi, and Mizuna. There’s also some arugula in that bed. The green pellets on the soil are Sluggo Plus, so hopefully we won’t be sharing too much with the slugs! I also was able to pot up most of my tomato seedlings into larger containers, plus a few of the peppers. And I started some more lettuce seeds in order to have seedlings to plant about a month from now.
What I haven’t gotten done yet is planting potatoes or onions, or breaking ground at the Impact Community garden. I have worked up part of our big vegetable garden, but more work needs to be done. And I also need to ‘harvest’ some of our compost. But we have gotten 4.5 inches of rain in March, and over 12 inches so far this year, making the soil too wet to work and the compost pile pretty soggy and heavy. So I wait.
It’s about time to weed and fertilize the garlic too, something I had already done by this time last year. The garlic is looking good, and so far the weeds aren’t too bad at all. Hopefully I can get to that chore this week. I will spread some blood meal on the garlic beds to give them a boost of nitrogen. And I will probably replace the straw mulch after weeding, to keep down weeds and conserve moisture. I have some green garlic planted in another bed, and it is looking good too. I should be able to start pulling some of it in about a month (or sooner).
It looks like the bluebirds are still waiting on spring too. They have an almost finished nest in one of the nest boxes, but no eggs yet. I guess the weather will settle down eventually, though I suspect this will be one year where we have about a month of Spring weather before it turns hot and summer arrives with a vengeance.
I’ll be back later with more gardening news as it happens. Maybe, just maybe, by then spring will have arrived!
Weather affects so many things for us gardeners. At least with my soil I don’t have to wait before planting. With raised beds and slightly sandy soil, I never have to wait for it to dry out. I do have to wait for the weather to warm up though. Tuesday night is supposed to be 23F. I’ll have to protect my onions. I figured I wouldn’t get any freezes that bad anymore, but no such luck.
Waiting for Godot is one of my favorite plays. “Perhaps tomorrow he will come.” real spring will be there soon enough.
That’s interesting that you fertilise your garlic in Spring – I haven’t done that as the advice seems to be it doesn’t need it but then I don’t tend to grow very good garlic so perhaps this is why???
I’m basing this on information in Growing Great Garlic by Ron Engeland, founding farmer of Filaree Garlic Farm. He recommends either foliar feeding every two weeks with a fish and kelp spray once plants are about 3 inches tall, or applying blood meal in early spring. I choose the blood meal because you apply it once and you’re done.