Every year I say that I will simplify. Every year I say that I will scale back. But then an unexpected warm snap in January stirs up the gardener in me, and the empty gardens and mosquito-free air erase all of the bug-eaten leaves and overgrown patches from my memory.
This year is going to be an interesting and unpredictable one for a variety of reasons, one of them being that my husband will be graduating from law school and we may or may not be moving. At this point, we are kind of hoping that we will stay here, and with that thought in mind, I have been sketching up plans of what I would like to do in the garden this year. It’s hard not knowing if you will be here or not, but at any rate, I think we can fairly aim for a spring crop of peas and other cool-weather vegetables even if we do have to move.
Awhile ago another blog, The Prudent Homemaker, tipped me off to the seeds available at Dollar Tree for $.25 a packet. If seeds are hard to not purchase, cheap seeds are even harder. I only needed a few more vegetable seeds to complete my already well-sketched out garden plans, and was glad to find them at the Dollar Tree and Menards. And then, of course, I had to pop into Walmart and find some other seeds that also needed a place in my garden.
And then I learned about winter sowing, where you use recycled milk-jugs as mini-greenhouses and set them out in the snow or cold weather. The idea is that the seeds will wake up when they are good and ready, and be stronger for the exposure to brighter light than they would find under indoor lighting. So far, I have planted 13 different varieties of flowers, and I also scattered some Salmon Peony Poppy seeds in the back plot, having read that it is good to plant them in light snow, which we still had.
It was a good thing I planted them that night, because the next day, more snow came – 11 inches of it!
And of course, having nothing else to do in my garden when it’s cold outside, I started reading internet research on wintersowing, and discovered you could get a variety of seeds from Wintersown.org just by sending in a self-addressed, stamped envelope. Really? Almost-free heirloom seeds? I had to try.
I ended up getting 10 varieties of flowers, vegetables, and herbs suited for my zone, and 7 varieties of heirloom tomatoes for the price of six postage stamps.
And now I really need to stop.