H I F R I E N D S
It’s the last day of M A R C H! You guys, I am so excited. Right now, it’s blowing snow, minus 10 with that wind chill and just down right unpleasant. I love winter, but this slow rebirth honestly tears at my soul. I’m confused and feel like I’ve been swallowed up by some eternal grey and cold void. But it’s never as bad as all that, since it’s so temporary and it won’t be long before we are outside in the sunshine smelling the damp earth.
I am currently sitting by a drafty window with my big headphones on blasting the band QUILT (self titled album) and drinking caffeinated beverages interspersed with water and trying to figure out how I am going to write about the almost non-existent March gardening season (PHEW long sentence!). But I can’t stop thinking about how I need to play guitar and mandolin more and just change my life completely? Throw away my phone, read more books and just work on becoming telepathic with plants and how can I start writing music (sounds reasonable)?
A N Y W A Y . . .
If there is one thing that lets me feel a never ending sense of life and excitement during this time of year, it’s SEEDS! Yes, seeds. This year, I ordered some from the Incredible Seed Company and Hope Seeds (both heritage seed companies in Nova Scotia). I have a few packets from Heritage Harvest Seed (now 2 years old) and Veseys, an Island company about half hour drive from our place. I also have quite a few collected from the garden. My ultimate goal is to become self sufficient and not have to buy seeds, but this is only our 2nd year on our acre, so not quite there.
I started …
Tomatoes (many different types: Bloody Butcher, Alaska Tomatoes, Acadian Cherry Tomatoes, German Johnson, Black Prince, Black Krim, Orange Mennonite Beefsteak, Amish Canning Tomatoes, Early Rouge… Okay I have an addiction to buying seeds), peppers, F L O W E R S & H E R B S (lavender, rosemary, basil, sage, catnip, hollyhock, echinacea, black eyed daisies, bergamot, strawflower, poppies, zinnias and I know I’m forgetting quite a few).
I also planted a giant pumpkin seed which is slow going and a couple of pine tree seeds that I collected in the fall. Last year, I planted Oak and Horse Chestnut so hopefully this year, I can add some pine to the property.
S T A R T I N G E A R L Y
For the past couple of years, I have followed the instructions on seed packets. 6-8 weeks indoors before the last frost in your area. Last year, many of our flowers bloomed around (or didn’t bloom for that matter) the first frost of the season. Our tomatoes had to ripen inside and our pumpkins were definitely not orange or big enough to carve. I don’t know if this is going to be WAY too early to start a lot of our tomatoes and flowers, but my rationale is that when I go to the nurseries in late May and Early June to buy perennials, they are WAY older than 8 weeks and they do swell.
E C H I N A C E A
Echinacea is sprouting! I am so excited, last year I planted a lot of it hoping that we would forever have echinacea in the summer. Nothing happened at all. I was disappointed, my visions of an everlasting supply of the cold busting flower destroyed. I blamed it on the seeds not being viable and bought new seeds from a different company, without actually doing research on growing the flower. When it came to starting it again… I did the sensible thing and looked it up on the internet. Apparently, you should stratify the seeds, so I put them in a damp paper towel, sealed in a plastic bag for a week or two and placed it in a cupboard in the kitchen. Lo and behold, they sprouted! I was SO excited and immediately went to the recycling and found a home for them.
H O L L Y H O C K S
I dream of a house being surrounded by the fairy tale flower, and will do my absolute best to grow these. The past two years, I have failed terribly. I bought seeds from Heritage Harvest Seed Company (I think out of Manitoba) and I could not start the hollyhock seeds at all. This year, I ordered from a company much closer to PEI (Hope Seeds in Nova Scotia) and have about 5 little plants growing! I am going to baby these in the hopes that they will grow and grow and grow and live on for the centuries to come on our little farmstead.
They are black jet Hollyhocks and I dream about them at night. They are growing into beautiful wee plants and this is the reason why I am planning to document plant growth. I can’t wait to show you in August or September.
W A X I N G R E P O T T I N G
And, when the new moon graced the skies, my Mom (visiting for the week <3) and I repotted many of the house companion plants: Aloe Vera, Jade, Hoya Wax Plant, Peperomia, Spider plant, English Ivy, Haworthia. You have bigger homes now for the summer and I hope you will be happy!
F A C I N G the C O L D
During my Mom and Merlin’s visit this week – we still braved the cold, heading out through the fields to visit the hundreds upon hundreds of Canadian Geese on the river.
T H A N K Y O U
And I just want to thank you for reading and joining me on this absolutely magical journey of starting plants from seeds. I almost feel like I need to apologize for the total lack of colour from my posts lately, the glimpses of green though – life and more life in this grey and stark winter world. It won’t be long I hope before our world is bursting with colour. Before, winter feels like a distant dream and summer a sweet, buggy reality.
Planting seeds is E A S Y and honestly so incredibly vital to life on this planet. Evolution before your eyes. Vesey Seeds is currently giving away free packets of wildflower seeds in an effort to bring the extremely concerning issue of vanishing bee populations to the public as well as obviously providing more food for the bees. If you would like your own packet to help out, simply fill out a form by clicking H E R E