The greenhouse shelves are full right about now. It’s amazing how fast they fill up this time of year. But then, that’s why I installed shelving, to hold plants. Right now the plants are mostly warm weather veggies like tomatoes, peppers and eggplants, plus herbs and the Wave petunias. I also have a few cool weather plants like brassicas, lettuce and other greens that I have as backups or to fill in bare spots as needed.
Many of these are in 3.5″ pots now, which take up quite a bit of room. But they also make for bigger plants with more roots, and that’s why I like to give them ample quarters. And if I have to delay planting due to soil or weather conditions, they hold better in larger pots. The 3.5″ size square pot fits perfectly in the standard 1020 flats, and the pots themselves last for many years.
Even as the shelves are full, I made room for new plants in the greenhouse beds. Last week I pulled the rest of the spinach plants, and yesterday I pulled the overwintered kale and harvested it. Both the spinach and kale did great in the greenhouse, and gave us greens in the late winter/early spring time frame when fresh homegrown veggies are really appreciated.
Yesterday I planted cucumbers where the spinach was growing. I’ve had good luck growing them in the summer greenhouse in years past. It gets quite hot in there in summer, and the cukes usually hold up well to the heat. I grow parthenocarpic types that don’t need pollination, and this year I planted Manny, Tasty Jade and Corinto. For supporting the cucumber vines I use some old remesh tomato cages that were here in the shed when we bought HA. They are smaller than I prefer for a tomato cage, but at about one foot in diameter they work great for the greenhouse cukes.
I started the cucumbers inside about four weeks ago. These days I start all my cucurbits in pots or plug trays, and they do quite well that way. I am careful when planting, and avoid damaging the stem of the plant or burying it any deeper than it was growing in the pot. I always have problems with pill bugs in the greenhouse, so I will avoid mulching until the plants get bigger. The bugs and slugs love to hide in the mulch, and I don’t want to encourage them! I also spread a liberal handful of Sluggo Plus around the plants after I got them in the ground.
While I was working in the greenhouse yesterday, I took the time to replant one of the mini salad boxes with more Speedy and Apollo arugula. I love both of these quick growing and mild tasting arugula varieties. I should be able to continue harvesting arugula until it gets too hot in there and the leaves get tough or strong tasting. I still haven’t decided what I will plant in the spot where the kale was growing. I have lots of greens to choose from, so it will probably either be a quick growing cool weather type, or one that can stand some heat. Outside, the main garden is finally starting to dry out, and I hope to get out there this week and do some work prepping the beds for planting. I also need to do a bit of weeding and add some mulch for the garlic.
You are so incredibly organized – I have a feeling it will be a long time before I get there…if ever! I’m just trying to get caught up with all my regular plantings and I’m almost there…of course, then there are the beds to build & fill, paths to mulch, drip to set up. I sing this same song every year, it seems!
Not that organized – I still have raspberries to thin and mulch, the Wild Garden to clean up and mulch, plus the whole main vegetable garden needs work to get it ready for planting! There’s always something to do, for sure.
Indeed, you have a full house of seedlings in your greenhouse!
When you remove one vegetable, do you add in new compost before you plant the next batch of vegetable? Or do you just amend your soil once a year?
It is quite beautiful now in Hudson Valley. I can’t wait to get the tomato seedlings into the outdoor garden. It is quite challenging to be patient!
I generally add some fresh compost every time I clear out a bed and plant something new. I use more compost for something like the cucumbers that will be there for a longer time, and less compost for something like lettuce or arugula that will be growing for less time. I’m also using worm castings this year in all my beds.
It is challenging to be patient here too! It’s way to early for the tender crops, even though it’s tempting on a warm sunny day like today.
Those cucumbers already look big and healthy. It will be a while before I plant mine. I usually do that around the end of May to the beginning of June.
I’m so excited with my new greenhouse this year that I love reading your posts about your own. The one thing I regret so far is that the garden “bed” I put in my own has a bottom (was part of a crate so wood). That prevents me from growing anything that requires any deep roots – it’s only 4 or 5 inches deep.