After-Frost Planting Day

Today I spent several hours getting some plants and seeds in the ground now that [hopefully] the danger of frost has passed.

My first goal was tomatoes.  My mom had purchased 3 Roma tomato plants from Arkansas Tech and I planted those a couple of weeks ago.  Today, I added to those with more I got from Taylor’s, our local nursery.  My goal is to grow enough tomatoes to can (diced, stewed, spaghetti sauce, etc.).  I added 4 more Romas, 2 Oregon Spring, 1 Jersey Star, 1 Celebrity, and 1 Brandywine.  I figure I’ll have enough variety to see what produces well in my garden.  Below is a photo of what I call my “Salsa Garden.”  It has tomatoes, onions, jalapeno peppers, and it will have bell peppers in a couple of weeks.  I also planted carrots and plan to add chives and herbs. On Sunday I planted a border of nasturtium to try to keep pests at bay.

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(The dark soil you see at the top of the garden is the residual effects of my ignorantly placing my tomatoes too close to the dog pen, prior to planting.  Lucy, our black dog, completely destroyed one tomato plant and got about half of another. Hopefully that one will survive.  While I was very frustrated, this reminded me that I have to be careful not to plant anything too close to the dog pen!)

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In this photo, you see four of my my squash hills.  My zucchini didn’t make the transplant (bottom left) so I planted new seeds today.  I don’t know if the other squash will make it, either.  I read that squash weren’t easy to transplant and I’m afraid it may have been too much for me to try.

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This is my first bush bean seedling from a row I planted last week in my raised bed.  Today I planted a whole row of bush beans in another garden Matt tilled for me, so I’m excited to see these sprout as well.

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This is my broccoli garden. What I thought was a head forming on one of my plants turned out to be a flower stalk, so that one’s shot.  I wonder if I’ll get any broccoli before the heat overcomes them.  On Sunday I planted dill in the midst of the broccoli and I added alyssum, a flower that is supposed to be good for broccoli plants.

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This is another look at my broccoli garden. I have onions there, too.  I guess if broccoli doesn’t grow well, my onions are making up for it!

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This is my disappointing cabbage and spinach garden.  The cabbage you see is the largest I have. The others just don’t seem to be growing. My spinach never did sprout, and it’s too late to replant until fall.  This is my second failed attempt at spinach. 😦

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Guess what these are?  I thought they were weeds on the border of where I planted potatoes in March (which subsequently rotted), but since I couldn’t pull them up easily I decided on a whim to google “potato plants emerging,” and guess what I found? These are two potatoes that made it!  I’ll see how they end up doing.

Overall, this part of the gardening experience is hard. It’s physically hard work, and it’s hard doing all that work not knowing how it’s going to turn out. I keep looking at the positive: at least I can learn from my failures and adjust for next year.  And hopefully this year will end up yielding a decent crop after all.

 

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