Sunday, February 12, 2017

Early 2017 Starts

It's the middle of February. I started my third set of starts today.

First set: late January: started one tray of "Assorted Chile's." I've observed that peppers in general are usually not ready when I want to set them out, so I'm starting earlier this time. But I'm also starting with things I'm not life-and-death about.

That's the left tray in the top photo.  They've been on a warming pad since then, with a plastic "mini-greenhouse" over the top.

Second set: early February: brassicas. A fair bit of kale and broccoli and cabbage and kohl rabi and other brassicas.

No warming pads, but they're under cover.

Also at that time, a friend had given me a load of inexpensive peat pots. That's the right half of this photo.

Those didn't expand to their promised 2" height (they didn't hardly expand at all), but I'm still experimenting with them. I've got them soaking in a tray, with four or five lettuce seeds in each one, hypothesizing that the roots might do something.. We'll see how these do, if indeed they do anything at all.

Then today, 2/12, I started quite a few more. Mostly tomatoes, a few peppers. Also on a warming mat, also with a plastic "mini-greenhouse" over them.

Tomatoes this year:

Slicing: for real: firework tomatoes. Supposed to be large, even, and delicious. Indeterminate (correction: determinate. Darn.). Also a batch of multi-colored tomatoes, largely for fun; who knows whether they're determinate or indeterminate.

(Science trivia: "determinate" tomatoes try to fruit all together - that's good for agribusiness and large scale canners. And when they're done, they stop growing. "Indeterminate" varieties keep growing for approximately eternity, given enough food, water and warmth. )

Paste tomatoes: San Marzano, as before. We've liked these.

Cherry tomatoes: We've had great success with Chocolate Cherry in recent years. I also planted some 2013 seeds of a sweet cherry tomato. We'll see if those even sprout.

Spring is coming.

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