I’m nursing a cold today and snuggled on the couch with my seed catalogs to keep me still and resting. (No, Calamity is not the best patient, but no surprise there.)
I know I’m not the only one wrapping up orders and planning the garden. Heck, some of y’all southern types may be ready to start seeds already. Don’t let me slow you down. But for anyone still considering things, let’s chat.
I’ve mentioned before how much hard work goes into gardens. Have Realistic Expectations. Don’t buy way more seed than you really need, they can get expensive. On the flip side though, get enough for what you want to do, after you factor in the time and labor needed to grow the crop, the seed is the cheap part of things. Always have a little bit more seed than you think you’ll need, so you can replant if the first seeding fails. And so you can do succession plantings for year long favorites like lettuce. If you are buying packets of lettuce seed, you’ll need a few of them in order to plant enough for a year of lettuce. There are far fewer situations that would require multiple packets of squash seeds. Know How Many Seeds You Need.
Are you a seed saver? Have a way to harvest, clean and store your seed, with the variety name still attached to it. I can’t tell you how often I end up with mystery seed at the end of that process because somewhere along the way I thought, “Oh I’ll remember which lettuce this is.” Yea, Don’t Think That.
Know how long the seed will last. If you have a plan to store some of your seeds for long term, do your homework so that you’ll have seeds that will still germinate at the end of that storage term. This is definitely one of those times where not every seed is created equal.
Keep things organized. You want to be able to find what you’re looking for when the shovel hits the dirt. I like my large fishing tackle boxes for this. I keep smaller quantities of seeds in small plastic baggies, and they fit nicely in the smaller holding cells. Larger baggies fit in the larger holding cells. And the whole box closes up tight and has a handle. I can go and easily check my stores before ordering more of something. That saves me time and money.
Is anybody trying something new this year? Or got an old favorite that you think more people should be growing? (Or something to help a cold?) Shout out in the comments!
– Calamity Jane