Sunday, March 22, 2009

In the Beginning, There was Dirt.

Some of you may recall my green thumb series last summer... the story of how I started my first vegetable garden followed by a few progress reports.
2008: My first sprouts2008: It's edible!

Throughout the winter, I continued to enjoy the fruits of our labor in the form of soups, chili and spaghetti sauce. Each time that I pulled another container of tomatoes or bag of carrots out of the freezer, I smiled at my little piece of success.

There was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to plant another garden this year.  Unlike last year, I'm not waiting until plants and seedlings are almost gone from the local stores. This year we're planning things out better.  I sat down and thought about what I wanted to put in the garden this year.  While I enjoyed having carrots, I didn't feel that they were a good use of space.  Instead, I want lettuce, more onions and shallots.  I surfed the net for different types of tomatoes and decided that I wanted grape tomatoes for snacking, a beefsteak tomato for everyday use and some orange or yellow tomatoes for variety.  I picked out the types of onions and shallots that I preferred and handed the list to DH.

He hopped onto eBay and purchased most of the seeds that I had requested.  Didn't know you could purchase seeds on eBay?  Yes, you can. (What CAN'T you purchase on eBay? Wait, don't answer that because the things you CAN'T purchase on eBay are the same things that I don't mention on my blog.) 

If you have never checked out the produce section of eBay, you will be completely amazed.  There are some awesome varieties available.  Looking for a white tomato, a red cucumber or a purple pepper?  Only have a certain amount of room?  Shooting for container gardening?  Need something that is fool-proof for the beginner gardener?  Read the descriptions and you'll be surprised what you can find.  Some are outright funky.  As a bonus, you can probably get everything you want all from the same seller and save on shipping charges.   

2009: It just looks like dirtA few weeks ago, we planted seeds into four prefilled biodegradable containers.
(1) Beefsteak tomatoes and grape tomatoes
(2) Texas onions
(3) Maui onions
(4) Several varieties of peppers

2009: One lonely sproutI kept them in a warm, sunny place and spritzed them with water every day.  When they didn't start to sprout when they were supposed to, we moved to plan B.  We placed the trays inside greenhouse boxes and filled the bottoms with about half an inch of water.  We covered them and let nature take over.  The onions and peppers are showing little progress, but the tomatoes are doing very well.
2009: Some tomato plants emerge!2009: 34 out of 36 tomato plants break through!
This is a project that DH and I are doing together and once the garden is ready to plant will become a family project.  I'm very excited about the fact that something I put into the ground (or pseudo ground in this case) is actually coming to life.  I don't have a green thumb and am often afraid to bring plants into my home because they usually die.  Thankfully DH is helping out!

Stay tuned... There's more to come, including the assembly of another raised bed!