Garden Time!

Not time to plant yet but time to start thinking about planting.  And, time to start begging for a garden expansion . . which isn’t likely to happen but it never hurts to ask.  We’ve talked about the garden and we’re going to change some things. Last year I planted over 80 tomato plants, mainly because they come in those little 6 packs and we kept buying different varieties and I hated to throw anything out.  Planting all those tomatoes left little room for anything else in the garden.  And, I’m allergic to tomato vines so Vince had to do all the weeding and picking and that didn’t work out so well.  This year, I think we’re going to plant maybe 3 slicing tomato plants and 3 Juliet plants and buy the rest from the Amish.  They sell boxes of canning tomatoes for probably less than it costs me to grow them, considering how much watering I had to do and the cost of our water.

The plan for the 2011 garden is to concentrate more on the items we love that are more expensive to buy.  This week when the Baker Creek Heirloom Seed catalog arrived, I spend an hour or so going through it and ordered some of the seeds we will need.  Not only are their catalogs beautiful and I so enjoy sitting and looking at them (I hear some of you saying get a life!) but their seeds are all non-GMO and you can read their statement about their seeds here.

My seeds arrived today and here’s what I got:

The bottom one in this photo is a loofa gourd — good for making dishrags and body scrubs, an orange okra and two types of carrots.

Sugar Snap Peas, Jackson Wonder Bush Lima Beans, Bolita Bean (which is kinda like a pinto bean and I think my grandpa used to grow these), White Whippoorwill Cowpeas (I think these are like the cream peas my grandparents planted) and the typical Purple Hull Peas.

Six Week Purple Hull Peas, Mesclun mix, New Zealand Spinach, Endive and Apple Green Eggplant.

I can hardly wait to start planting!  There are probably other seeds I will have to buy but there’s no use buying more than I’ll have room to plant.  The lettuce, spinach, mustard, etc will be planted real early and will mostly be harvested before time to plant the okra and some of the peas but no matter how I plan it, I want more garden space.  It would be easy except for those blasted deer that eat everything!

Are you planning to plant a garden in 2011?  If so, what will you be planting?


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    It’ll be a while yet here in PA but I can’t wait to garden again 🙂 I planted a ton of heirloom tomatoes last year & J planted a ton of peppers. Next year I’m doing half tomatoes & half okra, the rest I could kind of do without, lol…

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    We do a little container gardening. Several tomato plants, red, green and yellow peppers along with banana peppers. We want to try some different things this year. We had peppers until the end of October. That has never happened before!

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    Sarah B says

    HA! I was just looking over seed catalogs the other day but we can’t plant here in Ohio till April or May. Still I like to get my garden drawn up (I draw out physical plans so I know how many seeds to start and where they will go) and my soil additives ready. I add compost since we have really bad clay at our house. Then when it begins to thaw I will have the hubby turn the soil and break it up a couple times before plants will be ready to go in the ground. I have been kicking around the idea of doing a “cold frame” and trying to get some veggies going early…

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    You bet I am planting this year – especially since I will not be doing as much traveling out of state. I have gotten my first seed catalog and waiting for the others. I am thinking about doing more greens and will be starting those soon. I have an earth box which I can drag indoors if necesary.

    Last year, I started building up the garden area and I need to continue ding so during these cooler months. I might try a cold frame on the south side of the house, just for fun!

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    pat says

    I live in Pennsylvania I plant tomatoes, potatoes, onions, green peppers.
    The rest I buy at local plant stands on the side of the roads.

    I wish for a fresh ripe tomatoe right now. The last one was the beginning of November and that was a late one. We didn’t get frost too the end of November and that was unusual for us.

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    Linda H says

    For years, I have made it my own personal traditon to collect the seed catalogs as they arrive in the mailbox and stack them in a basket –UNopened– for New Year’s Day/first week of January –my own special treat for making it through all the responsibilities (hard work) of the holidays. What was that you said about get a life? 🙂 You’re not alone. I enjoy the seed catalogs and the planning of the garden. Because we were out of town at a crucial garden stage last year, I mostly planted tomatoes, knowing they would make it on their own. So, I’m looking forward to diversifying this year… eggplant, cucumbers, pole beans, candy roaster squash, a new heat resistant cilantro I just heard about. I’m not familiar with all those different types of peas, Judy. Maybe you can post a dissertation on the different characteristics and recipes as the season progresses. Spring will be here before we know it!

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    tomatoes for eating (buying sauce toms from the farmers market), basil, garlic (already in), greens (salad, spinach), sweet green peas, pole beans, and afew varieties of squash. Ugh – you made me wish for spring NOW… and I have at least until late April to wait!!!

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    I got my catalog the other day and haven’t taken time to sit down with it yet. And oh how I long for a good fresh tomato! No planting for us for a while yet but I’m going to try some new things this year.

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    Marilyn Satterfield says

    I know several people who garden where there are deer and they swear by this advise. They sprinkle their ground with human hair cuttings ( from the barber or beauty shop). They tell me that they have not had any problems with munching deer . Worth a try and cheap !!!!

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    while In Iowa, I always seemed to get a garden catalog about the time a blizzard would come. Fair Warning ! LOLL ! It will be awhile till spring, but I have fun dreaming and planning. For weedy Tomatoes I use 10 x 30 black plastic and cut small holes for anything done as a plant ( tomatoes, peppers, eggplant) poke holes, add my trellis and grass clippiings. I dont worry much about watering it stays wet under there. I dont worry too much about heat if I keep the grass mulch on top of it. I have gone away for 2 months middle of summer and come back to wonderfull goodies. I cannot bendover with a back injury so theres no way Im bending over for a stinkin weed !

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    Kathy S. says

    We can’t plant here till Memorial Day here in central NY, so I have time to figure out what I’m planting in my container garden. A few tomatoes, peppers(hot and bell),green beans, peas, and I want to try some different types of lettuce. Hopefully the fence we put up(for the dogs) will keep the deer and rabbits out this year.

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    The only weeds I had last year were the strawberry plants that ran wild and over ran their garden boxes. I’ll get them under control this year… I hope. We built garden boxes a couple years ago… 24″ x 16′ that are 16″ high (1 x 8’s stacked) and filled with a mix of 75% peatmoss and 25% sand. I have 4 boxes that are set 3 feet apart and the walkways between and the perimeter are covered with a heavy duty landscape fabric – No mulch – just the fabric. No problem with weeds and any that did get started were easily pulled and tossed.

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    Not a lot of room in our yard for veggies with Charlie’s daylily and hosta extravaganza but I do hope to plant a couple of BIG pots – one with eggplant and two with heirloom tomatoes (one red, one yellow…).

    Like you, when I buy a six-pack of tomatoes, I HATE to throw any away and if I can’t give some away, I plant them all. But since we belong to an organic CSA, we really don’t need to plant that much for daily use… except for beans — I wish we could get more green beans from the CSA so maybe a few poles of runner beans…

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    Judy I was just thinking about my garden today. I think I am expanding it this year and I am also hoping the raspberries I planted don’t take it all over. One thing I do know is that I have to set up a fence for the rabbits and figure out how to keep the ground squirrels from tunneling in. The ground squirrels ate all my beans and cucumbers last year!

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    Cindy B. says

    I use raised beds too. And Territorial seeds/plants.

    I am going to move my cold frame box and get some Swiss Chard started early. My oregano and rosemary are doing well, as is the mint.

    I miss my garden … it is such a reward at the end of the day.

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    Linda Bishop says

    Hi Judy

    Linda here from New Zealand. Hope you have success with your NZ Spinach. I just love this plant. I wonder if you have grown it before or tasted it? The leaves are lovely sliced thin for salad, divine cooked quickly in a little butter & just the remains of the water used to wash.I like this with a squeeze of fresh lemon juice. Stalks and leaves chopped up yummy in stir fries. I think this may become a favourite for you.

    Happy eating


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    Jolie says

    Hi, Judy – just today I was working outside in shorts (70 degrees here in Central TX). I’m preparing beds for spring wildflowers. I use the no-till method for making new beds. I put cardboard down on the ground where I plan to plant. Come spring, the ground will be soft & weed – & grass-free. I love planning for new beds! In Dec, I planted Rocket Larkspur wildflower seeds & those seedlings are coming up nicely. I should be planting broccoli now, too. Lots of plans – I’ll have to check out the seed catalog you are using.


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    carol c says

    tomatos, squash, bell pepper as usual……………requested a catalog-thank you for the link Judy………….and will see what else I can eat. I am limited due to
    high potassium level. As a matter of fact I told DH last Sunday, that I wanted an
    above ground garden this year………….on one side of my walkway so I can get
    water to it easily and weed easily and see it every day-lol.

    We will see how it occurs!

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    I get Baker Creek as well and love they are GMO-free and organic.
    This year I plan to put in some asparus plants and I want more watermelon in my community garden rows. We are all organic there. I love freezing tomatoes now that I’ve tried it and will plant more of those but unlike you, I’m not allergic to the vines. I also need to try those cluster tomatoes for the first time.
    Other than that, its the usuals of lettuce, cabbage, carrots, spinach, broccoli, cauliflower, peppers, eggplants, cukes, zucchine, butternut squash and a few herbs to garnish our veggies.
    Almost forgot, my dau-in-law wants some pie pumpkin so I thought a small ‘three sisters’ patch of corn, bean vines and pumpkins in the community garden plot.
    I’ve already made out lists that will change before I send in my orders but I know I have to order in Jan or risk them being sold out.