Planting seeds (with an incentive!)

  • going green

    Can you believe we’re nearing the end of February? That means we are almost through with winter and can start looking forward to spring. Now is a great time to start thinking about this year’s gardens. This year once again finds me in transition mode. We’re looking for a new house and that makes it a little difficult to plan a garden. I have found a wonderful solution, however. As part of my master gardener training, I must work on an intern project. I decided to participate in running a community garden in University Place, WA. I have always found these projects exciting. I cannot wait to discover how the community gardeners work together with the local food bank and elementary school. I will be writing about the project as it kicks off but for now I am planning my personal garden patch. I will be growing my vegetables in a 4 x 12 ft raised bed. This is a little smaller than what I had in New York, but I have other obligations to the community garden so I am sure I will be kept busy. Man, the temptation to digress into the world of community gardens is far too tempting as I think about the project! Ok, to the point: I placed an order for some seeds last week. I ordered seeds to grow lettuces, greens, carrots, radishes, and peas. I am trying to draw out how I’d like to best utilize my space. I am sure there will be some trellising involved. At home, I am going to experiment with containers. I will do a pot of lettuces and also peas. For me, the best part of gardening is experimenting. The fruits of the labor are just an added bonus. Gardening makes life far more interesting. It makes you pay attention to things around you. You will start noticing how people are incorporating edibles in their flower gardens. You will be amazed to see that it’s possible for your friend to grow enough food for a salad just from a few pots on her deck. Are you getting excited yet? Have I planted the seeds of gardening excitement?!?

    The excitement of garden planning got me thinking back to an old post from last year. It was about creativity and New Year’s resolutions. I just went back and reread everyone’s comments. It’s inspiring to read about how you are adding hobbies to make life more fun and interesting. Of course, I did bribe you with a giveaway to encourage the discussion. I’ve decided to do that again this year by giving away a canvas bag that I embroidered. Yes, in 2012 I added embroidery to my list of hobbies. Never saw that one coming but my mom started working on some embroidery projects and it looked like fun. Embroidery nicely compliments some of my other crafts such as knitting. My mom and I found some great canvas bags and garden related patterns. We thought they’d make great farmers market bags and I’ve made several over the past few months. I’ve decided to offer up this “Going Green” bag as a giveaway to one lucky reader. All you have to do is write about what you’re most excited to experiment with this year in the garden. Maybe you’ve never grown anything! This is your year to dig in and plant something. Maybe you’re an avid gardener but want to try growing something on a trellis for the first time this year. Whatever it is, let this giveaway inspire you to actually do it! I will choose a winner on March 4th!

    photo 2 (15)


    February 26th, 2013 | girl has thyme | 14 Comments |

14 Responses and Counting...

  • Eileen 02.26.2013

    Jenny, darling bag and another great post. Don’t enter me, just wanted to comment! Happy you’re enjoying embroidery along with your other many talents

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  • Don’t enter me, since I already got one of your darling bags for Christmas (not that another wouldn’t be wonderful!). It’s super cute!

    But I thought I’d tell you about our garden. We’re building raised beds. We bought cedar fence boards, since they were a less-expensive way to go. So our beds will be smaller, 3’x6’x11″. And we’re starting with 5 of them, and I want to try square foot gardening. We didn’t get stuff for drip irrigation, but you have Fred all excited about it. We don’t have the best sun on our property because of the trees, but we’re going to put them next to the garage, so hopefully some of the heat will reflect off the wall and help out.

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    girl has thyme Reply:

    Sounds fun! I’d love to have 5 different beds. Should work great for crop rotation. Just make sure to check out the plant families that need to be rotated. I have a ton of material on this if you’d like!

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  • Since I live in a place with cool summer temperatures, I’m going to experiment with row covers (blankets for the garden) to raise the temperature in my garden beds. I was at a workshop last weekend and the instructor says that using a row cover is the equivalent to adding 6 degrees to the temperature. I may even try a hoop house and row cover together for a 12 degree change in temperature. This is blowing my mind because it might extend my gardening season by an extra month or 2. I’ll let you know how it goes.

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    girl has thyme Reply:

    Very cool, Jamie! That floating row cover material also works really well to reduce damage from pests. It seems to be the answer to just about everything! I’d love to try a hoop house.

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  • I’m super excited for this summer. I’m presently taking a fruit tree
    Class, so I’m excited to apply what I’ve learned to starting a small orchard at home. I also read about gardening in gutters. I can plant short root crops, such as these adorable round carrots and strawberries. I’m going to put them on my fence and expand my growing space. I also want to make an awesome trellis between my raised beds. I’m going up all the vertical spaces I can. It’s going to be an exciting time in the garden. Oh yeah – I’ll start a raspberry bed too!!

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    girl has thyme Reply:

    Wow! That sounds so cool! I know absolutely nothing about fruit trees. Where do you live? Great idea on the fence gutters! Sounds like a great use of space!

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  • I am very excited about my papaya trees growing up. They are supposed to grow fruit by the first year, so mine have about six more months to that point. They are fun to watch because they grown several inches a month. I have four of them. Its too bad that I don’t really care for Papaya. I do freeze it and put it into my smooties though.

    I am also very excited for my lemon grass. I bought four sticks of it at a market and have been rooting it. South Florida has horrible amounts of mosquitos in the humid summer months. Seems all year I am preparing for those brutal summers, if not for hurricanes, for mosquitos and the inevitable flooding of the rains. But the lemon grass is a natural deterant for the blood suckers as is lemon thyme that I have planted. I am very excited to see if it works. Later closer to the summer, the stores will also start to cary the citronella plant which seemed to have somewhat of an affect on the bugs last year until my toddler pulled it out of the pot and it never recovered:-O. I need to get a toddler deterring plant next:)

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    girl has thyme Reply:

    I love that there are so many climates represented here. Make sure to post back with how your experiments turn out! Good luck battling the blood-suckers!

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  • What am I most excited about? Everything! Our garlic is looking good and we’ve got shallots for the first time this year as well. The lovely weather we’ve been having inspired us to get a lettuce mix into the ground today as well as some bush snow peas. I just love the early crops. And, of course, I can’t wait for our lemon tree to arrive (thanks for all your fabulous input!) and getting that all set up indoors.

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    girl has thyme Reply:

    Awesome, Katie! I’d love to come see your shallots… and Tippie Toe when he/she arrives!

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  • Since we’ve lived in our house I’ve focused on my herb garden, roses and planting tulip bulbs. But we just had a huge cedar removed from our front yard which is giving us a canvas to re-landscape or create our front yard. My vision is not clear yet, but I’m excited for what’s to come! Love your bag – you’re so talented!

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    girl has thyme Reply:

    How fun to have a new space to play! Do you get enough sun to do a raised bed for some veggies? Or you could always intermix pots of edibles within a new perennial bed! So many fun and interesting ideas!

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  • Congratulations to Laura Hill! You are the big winner of the Farmers Market bag! Thanks for all the garden discussion. I am going to look at adding a discussion or forum section on the website for you all to share what you’re up to in the garden and/or to ask for advice! In the meantime, post to the facebook page to keep the discussion going!

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