2020 Garden Thread

AlbergSteve

Minister of Fire
Dec 11, 2017
840
n
Well, 2020 has started off cold and snowy for us, and probably for you @begreen .
There's 1500 garlic under there, somewhere...
IMG_2234.jpg

Spent most of the week on the tractor clearing snow, for us and a few of the neighbours.
P_20200115_095058.jpg

...and I forgot to dig potatoes before the storm hit. Dug these in this evenings twilight!
P_20200117_165650.jpg P_20200117_170137.jpg
 

begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,456
South Puget Sound, WA
Fortunately, this is not our place It's picture sent to me by a friend in Concrete today. They got another dose overnight.

In comparison, we got no snow the past few days and just a dusting before that. The ground here is bare and dry.

Snow2-06.web.jpg
 

Montanalocal

Feeling the Heat
Dec 22, 2014
363
Helena MT
Organizing and saving my garden seeds

This time of year is not only a good time to order your seeds for the coming year, but also a good time to organize them.

For many years I just threw my leftover seeds into small cardboard boxes, and then dug through them towards spring. One snowy winters day I decided there must be a better way, and got a little more organized.

First, I threw away everything I knew I would never plant again, and also everything that was obviously way out of date. Then I created a spreadsheet containing each seed packet. I entered the variety, the year, the amount, the brand and where I have them stored. I sort my storage jars by planting time.

This really helps me when it comes time to order new seeds. As I plant, I update the list in pencil, crossing out packets that I use up, and making any other notes. Thus when I go to order seeds for the coming year, I can tell at a glance what I need. Then when I get my seed orders, I enter them into the spreadsheet and print out a new copy for the coming year.

I also store my storage jars in a fridge. The professional seed banks store their seeds at the lowest possible temperatures and lowest possible humidity. Thus glass jars in a fridge or freezer is the best.

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SidecarFlip

Minister of Fire
Keep my unused seeds in the freezer in a ziplock bag and yes, I do have one of those tractor things to plow with.... :)
 

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AlbergSteve

Minister of Fire
Dec 11, 2017
840
n
Wife has ordered seeds this week. This will be the first year with an indoor seed starting setup with lights, timers and heat mats on thermostats. In the past we used our unheated greenhouse and heat cable in a ''sand box'' and started a bit later in the year. The other project that I'm about to start is building a cabinet incubator to hatch chicks. Pictures and details to follow!
 
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SidecarFlip

Minister of Fire
Wife has ordered seeds this week. This will be the first year with an indoor seed starting setup with lights, timers and heat mats on thermostats. In the past we used our unheated greenhouse and heat cable in a ''sand box'' and started a bit later in the year. The other project that I'm about to start is building a cabinet incubator to hatch chicks. Pictures and details to follow!

Be careful now, the neighbors will think you are growing dope..._g
 
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DuaeGuttae

Minister of Fire
Oct 26, 2016
553
Texas
I also store my storage jars in a fridge. The professional seed banks store their seeds at the lowest possible temperatures and lowest possible humidity. Thus glass jars in a fridge or freezer is the best.
I also save dessicant packs/oxygen absorbers from medicine bottles and keep them in my glass jar in the fridge.

We bought the lumber to make a new asparagus bed, but it isn't assembled yet. We need to get cracking.
 

AlbergSteve

Minister of Fire
Dec 11, 2017
840
n
Be careful now, the neighbors will think you are growing dope..._g
Yeah, nobody cares here any more, everyone's got a plant or three in the back yard. The elderly neighbours would be more interested in what strain you were growing, and would it help them sleep at night! ;lol
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
Last year life got busy and I didnt get the garden in enough to call it a garden. The wife and kid were unhappy about this and promised to help this year. Win!

So I'm itching to get started!

Potatoes from last year were set out on the window sill to start the eyes.

Seeds will soon be ordered to replace older packets and things like tomatoes will be started March 1st. It seems like a good amount of time away, but is really around the corner!

Are you guys preparing yet?

I cant wait to see if the apple trees I put in last year will produce this year!
 

semipro

Minister of Fire
Jan 12, 2009
3,793
SW Virginia
I wanted to get started earlier too so I built a cold frame last year from some old deck boards and a double glazed storm door. I've added foil coated XPS insulation to the inside since the photo. I added a Smartthings temp sensor to it so I could monitor temps and open/shut the door accordingly. I also bought some auto closers meant for greenhouse windows that I plan to install to regulate temps.
cold frame.jpg
 

AlbergSteve

Minister of Fire
Dec 11, 2017
840
n
I cant wait to see if the apple trees I put in last year will produce this year!
That might be a bit optimistic. We've planted about 24 trees last year and aren't expecting fruit for three or four more years.
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
Maybe. I guess it would depend on the age of the tree that was planted and how well it acclimated to the new spot.
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
I wanted to get started earlier too so I built a cold frame last year from some old deck boards and a double glazed storm door. I've added foil coated XPS insulation to the inside since the photo. I added a Smartthings temp sensor to it so I could monitor temps and open/shut the door accordingly. I also bought some auto closers meant for greenhouse windows that I plan to install to regulate temps.
View attachment 255898
I use flipped over clear Rubbermaid tubs. I don't have a ton of room to store coldframes and such so I had to go stackable.
 

Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,668
SEPA
We have some sort of rodent in the garden that is thriving, particularly near the compost piles. When we had an inch of snow, there were many trails hollowed out under the snow that were easily observed. I think they are voles, but need to catch one to be sure. They are moving a lot of dirt around.
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
If they are voles, knock that population down before you plant in spring!
 
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Easy Livin’ 3000

Minister of Fire
Dec 23, 2015
2,668
SEPA
If they are voles, knock that population down before you plant in spring!
Thanks! I have a feeling that the population has been growing over the years due to the conditions I've made for them. I'll make some enclosures to put traps in, so they will out of the weather.
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
Once you get it down to a "natural" level, predators will keep it under control. But the population can easily get out of hand under a heavy layer of snow!
 

EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
A mouse trap set in their path with a little cover over them is deadly!
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,456
South Puget Sound, WA
Garlic got planted and I've harvested carrots and potatoes. Not much garden prep yet. The soil is too wet. I top-dressed some beds with some bunny poop. Started copper spray of peach and nectarines. This will continue every 2 weeks up to blossom stage.
 
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EatenByLimestone

Minister of Fire
Jul 12, 2006
7,326
Schenectady, NY
I want to harvest some peaches this year. I'm going to have to take out a bunch of grey squirrels. They'll strip the tree within a few days.
 

SpaceBus

Minister of Fire
Nov 18, 2018
4,096
Downeast Maine
Before too long I'm going to make some raised beds that can be moved with the tractor. Eventually I plan on building a permanent garden, but we just aren't there yet.
 

DuaeGuttae

Minister of Fire
Oct 26, 2016
553
Texas
We got the asparagus crowns in today (they shipped earlier than I expected, so it was really a rush). I had intended to finish the bed and soil as much as possible before the new year, but I had forgotten just how much the high levels of cedar pollen down here bother me. I just can't work outside as much as I would like in December and most of January. We had laid out the plot and put some fencing around last year, but the bulk of the work was the past two Saturdays.

We put down our cardboard weed barrier last week (though the non-soil is pretty barren still), finished the actual construction of the large raised bed, and managed to move two wheelbarrow loads of organic matter into it (rotted wood/soil from an area of our property where a former neighbor used to pile wood which he cut but didn't really use much). This morning we added a few more loads from underneath a different woodpile and all the compost we had in one of our bins. The rest of the depth is/will be a nice potting soil mix made locally that we were able to pick up this afternoon in bulk. I also installed my "olla" clay pots to help try to keep moisture near the roots for our long, hot summers. I was suprised when I learned that people do grow asparagus down here, but it was a pleasant surprise. We'll see how it does in coming years.

@begreen, is it possible to merge this thread and the other garden thread that was started recently in the DIY forum into one? I don't want to miss what other folks are growing.
 
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begreen

Mooderator
Staff member
Nov 18, 2005
82,456
South Puget Sound, WA
Getting ready for spring. The daffodils, camelias and crocuses are already in bloom. I got started on pruning yesterday. Will do some more this week. The plums and peaches have fat buds on them already. I started lettuce, peas and spinach too.
daffodils.jpg
 
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AlbergSteve

Minister of Fire
Dec 11, 2017
840
n
We have some sort of rodent in the garden that is thriving, particularly near the compost piles. When we had an inch of snow, there were many trails hollowed out under the snow that were easily observed. I think they are voles, but need to catch one to be sure. They are moving a lot of dirt around.
I had the displeasure of moving about 2 cords of wood from a shed that was attached to our chicken coop this weekend. I have never seen so many rats nests in one place, and each and every stick of firewood had a pile of rat pellets on it. Grim.
 

AlbergSteve

Minister of Fire
Dec 11, 2017
840
n
Getting ready for spring. The daffodils, camelias and crocuses are already in bloom. I got started on pruning yesterday. Will do some more this week. The plums and peaches have fat buds on them already. I started lettuce, peas and spinach too.
View attachment 257175
I got our pruning done before Christmas. The trees are one and two years old so it was a quick one hour job. With 30 trees, going to be a much bigger job in a few years! Seed starting starts today.
Wow, that seems early for Camellias.