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Tomato Seedlings, Straw Bales, this Week’s Articles


Greetings from the Garden!

As expected, low temps have dropped to frost range this weekend. We follow, a free service that gives fairly accurate long range forecasts. They predicted the many snow events and have also projected a much cooler than normal April. And so, here we are!

Indoor Gardening and Greenhouse:

The flats are looking good-in particular our first batch of tomatoes (Black Beauty) which have benefited from their daily outdoor exposure to sunlight and fresh air. The older plantlings get to go outside. They come in at night, not yet ready to go in our makeshift cold frames. The just-sprouted younglings get to stay in the little indoor greenhouse.

In the garden, we’ve stuck branches amidst the snow peas and sugar snaps so they may climb rather than sprawl all over the ground and each other.

We harvested broccoli, arugula, kale, and collards this week. It’s about the last of last year’s produce. Little arugula seedlings were transplanted directly from a plastic tray into the ground that is covered by our “cloth house”. BTW the cattle panel frame covered in heavy frost cloth may not look pretty but it has done a great job and serves as our main “cold frame”.

The carrots are really taking off, seemingly thriving on the snow from last week and the cold temps more recently. The seeds were planted in a specially made carrot box during mid-fall of last year and the little tops were protected all winter. Looks like we’ll finally have a decent crop.

The conditioning of the straw bales in the main garden is nearly complete. They’ll soon receive their top dressing of organic garden soil mixed with our own compost. And then we’ll set in the first plantings of kohlrabi, kale, bok choy, and collards. More bales will be added as the weather warms.

We proceeded to lay out the irrigation drip lines so as to keep the bales moist.

That’s a wrap for us on this frosty morn. How are you all faring out there with your planting and weather conditions?

We’d be really keen to know, so feel free to drop us a line or two in the comments below or up on our post on the GardensAll Facebook page. It’s already great to hear what you’re up to and what kinds of things you’d like us to write more about.

Coleman Alderson

G. Coleman Alderson is an entrepreneur, land manager, investor, gardener, and author of the novel, Mountain Whispers: Days Without Sun. Coleman holds an MS from Penn State where his thesis centered on horticulture, park planning, design, and maintenance. He’s a member of the Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society and a licensed building contractor for 27 years. “But nothing surpasses my 40 years of lessons from the field and garden. And in the garden, as in life, it’s always interesting because those lessons never end!” Coleman Alderson

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