Yesterday I spent much of the day working in my garden, plowing and planting. And I must say that while at the moment, I don’t feel settled at the farm or the ranch, I feel completely at home in my new garden.
Give me a garden and I will find happiness, peace and satisfaction.
Yesterday, I planted peas and carrots. I had forgotten how tiny the carrot seeds were until I tore open the package and poured them into my palm, nearly loosing them to a natural phenomenon called wind.
Planting tiny seeds such as carrot, lettuce and radish can be somewhat challenging. Rather than plant one seed at a time, ensuring proper spacing, I simply sprinkle them haphazardly down the line realizing that if I want, I can always go back and thin out crowded plants once they sprout up.
I’ve heard that some people don’t even cover the tiny seeds with dirt, they just scatter the seed in a wide row and walk on top to press the seed in the soil. I always feel much better if I go along and lightly sprinkle the dirt over the top then lightly press the seeds down with my hands, just to keep them from blowing away!
By day’s end, I was actually feeling quite productive.
Until I got wind that Glenn, the man that unknowingly out-gardens me year after year, already planted his corn.
I’m nowhere near being ready to plant corn. I haven’t even prepared my garden bed for corn. Nor have I constructed the fence that will keep the deer from consuming every last morsel. I haven’t even shoveled the manure necessary to produce a worthwhile crop.
But I do have some seed.
These are my favorite varieties, two of which I found at Holman Seed Farm in Collinsville:
1. Serendipity – Super Sweet with big stalks, great for fall decorations once the plant has been exhausted.
3. BT Hybrid – I grew this variety for the first time last year. I chose this variety to sell in the farmer’s market because it doesn’t get the worms like the Serendipity and the Sweet Ambrosia. I was a little leery of this variety at first. I wasn’t sure I wanted to eat something that a worm wouldn’t eat. But I ate it and I survived to tell about it. Believe it or not, it tasted much sweeter than expected and it was a good seller at the market.
Corn does great in this climate, but it does take up quite a bit of space. To save on space, I plant two rows, 6 inches apart and just run an antique push plow up the middle every so often until the plant is big enough to shade the ground below.
Around here, the last freeze date is April 15th. If corn is planted before this date, I run the risk of losing the crop to a freeze. Although I have heard stories of corn turning black from a freeze and making a comeback.
So if I do plant any, it will only be a couple of rows. That way, my loss isn’t all that catastrophic. While I’m at it, I think I will stick a few tomato plants in. If they make it, great! If not, it’s not that big of a loss.