I am hard at work planning my summer garden, are you? What are you going to plant? Do you have all your seeds, are you still ordering them from catalogs, or will you use starter plants and seedlings that you get from your local farmers market and garden stores? And me, you ask, what am I planting this year?
For sure, most definitely and unequivocally, I will not, and I mean will not, grow forty-two tomato plants as I did in 2021. That number was not entirely my fault, three of the tomato plants self-seeded. I hold myself accountable for planting thirty-nine though, and I am not sure the extra three plants really made that much of a difference. They did not tip the scale of way too many tomato plants. I think that was around tomato plant number fifteen or sixteen. The trouble for me was in 2021 I grew my tomato plants, mostly, from seed. When ones devotes the level of care and self-sacrifice to plant seeds, keep them indoors, on the [small] dining room table for weeks, nurture them and watch their miraculous transformation, there is no way one would stop from seeing this glory all the way through. This is part of living one’s best life, seeing a tomato plant go from a tiny seed to being one of the biggest plants in the garden! This year though, I think, for tomato plants at least, I won’t grow them from seeds.
My plan summer 2022 is to have two separate gardens, one devoted just to herbs and the other one just for veggies. I have measured the two gardens, the bigger one will be for the veggies. I have determined how much space each plant will need to grow, and how much space to set aside for the paths to use in the garden (another lesson learned, it is very difficult to weed if there is no space to kneel, turn around or stand without crushing something under one’s feet; paths are essential). I was able to get all of the measuring done with my trusty tape measure even in the cold and snowy days of winter. It is hard to envision rows of green treasures with the snow, brown leaves and bare trees.
My Herb Garden list includes: bay leaves; lemon verbena; lemon grass; basil (several varieties); rosemary; thyme; sage; lavender; oregano; fenugreek; curry leaves; dill (regular and fennel); fennel; parsley; anise; borage; chamomile; chervil; marjoram; chives; cilantro; fennel; garlic; hibiscus; lovage; savory; and turmeric.
My Vegetable Garden list includes: tomatoes; potatoes; eggplant; cucumbers; peppers (banana; bell; lunchbox; jalapeño; and fish peppers); onions; shallots; leeks; scallions; cucumbers; rhubarb ; carrots; celery (if you have not had homegrown celery, you have to try this, it is the most delicious celery you will ever eat); beets; arugula; spinach; peas; green beans; yellow beans; salsify; arugula; squash; Swiss chard; and sorrel (red veined and French).
Somewhere in the two I have to find room for my edible marigolds, nasturtiums and sunflowers. I want to try growing sweet potatoes too …
I am rethinking things. For the path in the garden, maybe I can make it smaller, more narrow, use different bricks than I had originally planned. I might need some to use pots, too, for some of the plants, and these can be outside the gardens. There is some space in the way back of the yard that might work too. I have not tried that before, not sure about the sun situation there. Back to the drawing board I go. Good thing it is only February. But then I remember, I will have my winter garden to plant first, and that is a whole separate list.
February 2022, by Pixie Millet