This is the view into my garden as of this morning...buried somewhere under those 3+ feet of snow...trees covered in a beautiful icy glaze. It's lovely and cold, but it makes me want to get started on my garden planning!
I've been gardening this plot since 1999 and over the years I've tried so many experiments with plants that I should be the star of "Gardeners Gone Wild" if there were such a show. This year I'm looking at my garden plans with the question, "What were the top favorites from past gardens?" It's more of a sensible-what-will-my-children-enjoy-the-most approach. That and 3 of my favorites: shallots & garlic & arugula. With that in mind we're looking at:
2 varieties of peas, carrots, French haricots-verts and purple beans, cukes, grape tomatoes, blue & red potatoes, zucchini, spinach, and various herbs and possibly pumpkins for later. Last year I had radish & turnip share a row, which was fine. I do love a good turnip! Last year's top producer was my everbearing strawberry patch - we've never had so many beautiful berries and I must have dug up and given away over a dozen plants! Also in my perennial section of the garden are my blueberry bushes and my asparagus - I hope the asparagus makes it through the winter despite my not completely filling in the gully.
Despite the fact that it is still much to early to begin any seeds, I will do so this weekend anyway, as an activity with the munchkins. I let them choose a variety of flower seeds to start every February. Nasturtiums are a favorite because we'll have blooms in about 2 weeks, but they try all kinds of seeds and see what comes up. Last year's zinnias survived long enough to be transplanted into the garden and were still blooming for us at the end of the season when we returned from Europe! Our seed starting supplies consist of empty yogurt cups and such, clear ones are our favorites so the kids can watch the roots grow. It's not fancy but it is fun!
It's also time to place my catalog orders! Last year Pinetree Garden Seeds from Maine served me well with shallots & onion sets and my first asparagus roots. (1lb of shallots runs $6.) Steve, the like-minded gardener who writes Compostings had recommended them. This year he suggested I try The Maine Potato Lady for my organic onions, shallots and potatoes. Thanks for the advice, Steve!
Yesterday I happened to receive via priority mail, the most beautiful greenhouse catalog ever created. Think New York Botanical Gardens or the Glasgow Botanic Gardens style greenhouses. These are 'victorian conservatory-I'd-like-to-hide-out-in-here-all-day' greenhouses by Hartley Greenhouses - the 'finest greenhouses money can buy.' I have visions of growing fig & lemon trees, starting my tomatoes and lettuces and just about everything else in one of these....
Aren't they divine? Hubby said I could add a greenhouse behind the new garage when it goes up, just next to where I want to put in the small orchard! I don't think he had seen the price sheet, but I appreciate that he's willing to consider it, and I love that he ordered the catalog for me!
Our schools have just announced they will be closed tomorrow to assess the roofs due to the excessive amounts of snow on them...looks like we'll be starting our seeds earlier than I expected!