2012: The year my annuals became perennials

I thought petunias were annuals, but apparently I was mistaken, as three of mine have come back. I hadn’t gotten around to emptying last year’s planter boxes yet, and this mild winter has rewarded my procrastination!

And our little vegetable seed starters are doing fine. I procrastinated on transplanting these, too, and it’s a good thing because the temperature dipped down to 30°F last night and there was frost this morning. The seedlings, still in their little cups on a tray, were easy to move inside for the night. (The petunias, fortunately, appear healthy and happy in their little planter boxes despite last night’s cold temperatures.)

I recently got some seed starting inspiration from Offbeat Home, one of my favorite websites ever. I’m not sure if the eggshells (as seen above) will work or not–I used a toothpick to poke drainage holes in the bottoms, but this was only after I accidentally flooded the seeds with water and then let them sit in damp puddles overnight while I fretted about what to do. I’ll have to wait and see how those eggshell seeds turn out. But the idea to use toilet paper rolls? Genius! I planted some pumpkin and winter squash seeds in the empty rolls, placed them under the chicks’ heat lamp (because germination for both of these crops is best achieved when the soil is 85-95°F), and in only two days had 100% germination! The packages estimated the germination at 7-14 days, so I’m feeling pretty awesome about my horticultural prowess right now.

The garden might end up being a little too ambitious this year with all these vegetables I plan on growing, but I’m pretty excited about it right now. I think part of the reason we’ve lost interest in the past was the lack of variety: tomatoes, peppers, and basil have been our main crops, with an occasional zucchini or salad green. But this year! This year we’re trying all kinds of plants, with the usual tomatoes and peppers but also squash (winter and summer), all kinds of greens, some beans and peas (which have always seemed really intimidating to me for some reason), beets, onions, carrots, and on and on. And herbs! Bajillions of herbs! Oh I am so excited!

Aaron built us some awesome raised beds, which don’t look like much right now, but will soon hold the bounty of awesomeness that I plan to eat all summer.

Oh! And the ornamental onions are flowering!

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5 Responses to 2012: The year my annuals became perennials

  1. joshbfarmin says:

    I work at a nursery here and have had people saying the same thing! People have been getting Peppers allll through the “winter” here in Sacremanto at least! Not sure if thats a good or bad thing! : ) Good luck with those beds, they look great!

  2. Hi, I love your blog! I like the pics and you’ve done a great job experimenting with egg shells and card tubes – great idea and I’m looking for cheap ways to garden. I’m hoping to get vegetables growing this year too so I look forward to reading about your progress.

  3. Renee Lambert says:

    oh! look, you guys have followes besides me and mom! Good work! And it’s true, yours pics are fantastiqué Kristin! I am also going to try some porch gardening in my new apartment here in Bangui, so I’m going to check out the website you linked to see if there are any helpful hints. p.s., I am now, more than ever, convinced that the whole fam damily should up and re-locate to Argentina to run a farm. I am pretty sure our combined skills set would make our farm not only an uber success, but a damn fun way to spend our days! Think of all the gardening experiments we can do, not to mention cheese making….

    • Nancy J. Lambert says:

      What great ideas! Oh, John says it makes him nervous about farming in Argentina bc he is the one who knows how to milk cows and bale hay!! I say, lets go for it!! Nancy

  4. Alessa Smyth says:

    I never thought I’d say this, but those are some pretty onions! And the planter boxes already look awesome. Good job Aaron!

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