Sunday, 31 March 2013

Start your EARLY veggie garden now!

This is the perfect time to get your early vegetable garden going. While the last frost day of May 9th (Toronto) is still more than a month away there are some vegetables that tolerate cold better and can be planted now.

We spent the whole day in the garden today. It was great to get my hands dirty again and smell the rich aroma of the freshly tilled earth. The weather was great. It was mild, overcast and rain was forecast for later in the day; exactly what newly planted veggies love.

Misha started out preparing the soil in our back garden....

...and I took charge of our kitchen garden which is conveniently located near our back door. It's great for a quick veggie run while cooking. Cinnamon, as usual, was keeping an eye on us. It was the kittens first day outside and they absolutely loved it.

Once the earth got tilled Misha put down some wood planks to walk on. He loves doing that. It's supposed to help avoid getting the earth compacted as you are seeding.

We planted onions in a row. They are fun to plant as they are large and easy to see where you plant.

We also planted them in a square foot planting style. Misha suggested trying this type of planting as well this year. It is more dense planting and great for small garden where every inch of growing space matters.

We continued planting lettuce, collard greens, beets (Misha's favourite), kale (my absolute favourite), peas and more; I have included the complete list at the end. It was so much fun to be out in the garden again.

I can't wait for some more veggie planting in the next couple of months. Drop us a line and let us know how your veggie garden planning is coming along. Are you thinking of growing your own vegetables this year?


For those interested in more planting details I am posting a 'how to' below.

How to start an EARLY VEGGIE GARDEN:

  • Today we planted: dinosaur kale, red russian kale, lettuce, radish, beets, yellow, white and red onions, parsnips, collard greens, snow peas and snap peas. These vegetables tend to tolerate cold better and are suitable for planting as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring (and well before the last frost day).  We will plant more of these every two weeks to extend the harvest of each variety.
  • Check the back of the seed packages for planting instructions. They are easy to follow.
  • You can plant in a single row or with the square foot planting method. We are trying our version of the square foot planting this year for some of the crops and see how it works out. Basically, you divide your garden into one foot squares and plant densely. We will let you know how we like this method.
  • Add black top soil if needed. We added quite a lot last year and feel the earth in our garden is still rich enough, so we are not going to add anymore for now.
  • Make sure to water well after you plant the seeds. Planting right before rain is a bonus.
  • Keep an eye out for your growing veggies and thin as needed. We will provide a veggie progress update and let you know how and when they are to be thinned.

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