Monday, March 9, 2009

What My Valentine's Day Activities Hath Wrought

No, I'm not here to announce that I'm expecting another baby. I have, however, been germinating.

Well, my veggie seeds have been. On Valentine's Day, I planted a few varieties of vegetables and several cooking herbs in an indoor seed mother thingie.

You can tell I have a really technical knowledge of this gardening stuff. Actually, I knew little about what I was doing when I started. Thanks to the following links, though, I now know more:

While it's not much, I consider it to be a good start. Feel free to leave more links to Tulsa gardening stuff in the comments. Please. Because my soul thirsts for gardening knowledge.

I first became interested in raising food for my family when I did a story on the business of farmers' markets for Tulsa Business Journal back in 2007. The passion of the growers I talked to for the story impressed me to go home to plant seeds in my backyard that very night. In the middle of May. I mean, $30 worth of seeds I bought at the Wal-Marts would grow all nice and neat and produce lots of lovely food if I put each plant in the ground three inches from all of the other plants - right?

Whoops. My crops of corn, tomatoes, strawberries, broccoli, jalapenos, red bell peppers, green bell peppers, zucchini, yellow squash, green beans, white onions and carrots - all planted at the same time during the first heat wave of the summer - were over-grown, disorganized and nutrient-deprived. And dry. Plus, I planted the whole mess right under a shade tree.

I hope my grandmother isn't reading this right now - you know, the grandmother whose entire yard is always looks like it came fresh off the cover of Southern Living magazine:

I certainly didn't inherit her talent for gardening. But, I didn't give up after a false start, and that's what counts, right? Say yes.

This year I'll be transplanting starts of roma tomatoes, brandywine tomatoes (heirloom alert!), jalapenos, yellow squash and green beans. I'll also plant several cooking herbs in pots that I'll strategically place all over my yard to make things really sparkle and smell delicious and drive the neighbors even more bonkers than they already are: Italian parsley, sweet basil, rosemary, cilantro, thyme and chives.

This weekend we're building raised beds; the next step (I think) is to have our soil amended. I'll be keeping you all posted on how my little garden is coming along. Right now I'm just hoping everything lives to be transplanted.

What veggies are you growing in your garden this year? I hope to hear of someone growing some really weird stuff - like the tomatoes they use to make purple ketchup - and I'd also like to know where that someone lives so I can come eat some of it.

Just kidding about the purple ketchup thing. Maybe.


Jill of All Trades said...

I love gardening and someday I'll have another one. I don't do too much of the seedlings but go right to the tomato and pepper plants. Seeds, I usually do cucumbers, corn and flowers. Plant marigolds and dill with your tomato plants the tomato worms like them better and it's pretty and smells good.

Rocko said...

Lemon Basil is a wonderful herb to grow, Particularly to use on lemon chicken in the spring and summer!

Amanda said...

We did like you did last year and ended up with everything overgrown and nasty together. Couldn't even go pick the basil without getting chiggers. Yuck.

So, I have pots going of basil, chives, and italian parsely. Aubrey is going to attempt potted jalepeno and habenero peppers. I'll probably end up buying more because I'm new to the seed thing.
You realize you're gonna have to share with me, right?

Brigid said...

I'm hoping to do basil, parsley, maybe oregano, peppers, and tomatoes in pots this year. I'm an apartment dweller, so I can't do much more than that.

Mercedes Millberry said...

Our garden took such a beating in the ice storm, we didn't get into it last year at all. We did some planning last night. We hope to include Edamame again. It actually grew pretty well in our climate, though not a prolific producer, but we only had one plant. We have also grown hops (for home brews natch) but the hops frame needs serious repairs. Tomatoes are always good, though the year seems to dictate success more than the gardening. And I love peas and cucumbers and of course herbs. We may have to get the seed starter for our Aero Garden to get us on the right track.

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