It has been wet here in Central Texas for the past week, and I have only had a little time to get the garden fleshed out as I would like it to cook for the next seven weeks. I have already planted a bunch of my union sets, but I am looking at a bunch more as I go through the washroom every day reminding me of what I need to do.
I have seeded about 130 tomatoes, eggplants, and peppers, but I have a long way to go. I am to the point that I can now bring in my compost with my tractor, so I should be looking good by this weekend on my Ruth Stout gardem. Then it’s off to get some hay. I am using Pro-Mix to start the seeds in. I plan to use fish fertilizer once they have germinated and are looking for the sun.
I am growing all my starts on heat mats as it is getting rather cool here especially at nights. I also just finished a four-tier rack with grow lights to encourage all my plants after they have popped up.
I am also experimenting with growing slips from a couple of Korean sweet potatoes I purchased. On the Korean sweet potatoes, I was amazed after viewing some videos on YouTube on how robust they were. It seems that they have runners that have a tendency to grow more roots as they head for who knows where! While they seem to be extremely robust once started, they are slow to grow slips. As I have a huge amount of horse compost, I am thinking about just building a large bed and embed a bunch of them and see how they do?
While I seem to be developing spring fever, so is my wife. She is starting to grow garlic starts in her sunny kitchen window along with getting some ginger going. We have a large deck on the backside of our house, and my wife has many earth boxes that she grows herbs and other things. The photo on the right is ginger that she is starting. We have a large asparagus bed and the ginger will go in there. The ginger is from the grocery store and so is the garlic.
Below is a graphic that my wife and Daughter-in-law inspired. It’s great for planting most anything, but especially for climbing vegetables like cucumbers, beans, and other things. The design uses landscape timbers for the square beds and four pieces of hog wire for the fly-over. We used stones and flat rocks for the paths. The pig wire is stabilized by connecting them to small T-posts driven into the ground as anchor points. Its fun to walk under the wire and have cucumbers and green beans hit the top of your head! And yes, I do live on the top of a hill.
Do you like Okra. I love the stuff. Loads of fiber and other good stuff. My wife cooks gumbo all the time. Fried okra is the bomb as one of my sons likes to say. Lately, I have been purchasing okra at a local Asian market but have no idea what the cultivar is so I am doing a little experimenting this year and ordered the seeds in the graphics below. The okra is “Granddaddy’s” from Sow the Seed and “Steward Zeebest” from Southern Exposure. Interesting names and both are hand-me-down types of seed and not normally available in your standard seed catalog. I’ll show and let you know how this works in the future.
To close out this blog, I want to talk about what is on my mind. One of the things that keep me up nights is the Coronavirus in china. Yes, the virus is looking bad, but along with that goes just having basic food. If you cannot go out to a local grocery store, what could you do? I suspect this is happening in China with the lockdown of many of their cities. I would think that having a garden that you could address your food needs and get you through something like is happening in China would be great. The garden along with some common storage foods costing no than $100.00 would get you through something like this. Grits, rice, and beans come to mind. So see you on the next blog.
Cheers from Central Texas
Prepare while you can
Purchase seed and start that garden
Take care of your family, friends, and neighbors
Look after the poor and those who have less than you do
Think about things DIFFERENTLY. Start a GARDEN!
I eat an all plant diet and have for about a year. I am now 77 and have as much energy as I did when I was much younger. This book (PDF) is free. To get this Book go HERE.