A Gardener’s Diary: Spring has arrived

After all the cold days, this little bit of heat was welcome.

Everything is coming up in the garden and so are the weeds. So many blooms are keeping the bees busy. I transplanted some of my peas. I wait until they are tall enough so they are not bothered by the quails. So far they have not touched the lettuce and the kale.

I have lettuce seedlings coming all over the garden. I use these early sprouts as my guide for early planting. All the snow we had protected a lot of the plants in the ground. Two of my globe artichokes survived and are looking good.

I know every gardener is very impatient to get to work. Don’t be fooled by this nice weather as I am pretty sure that we will have another frost one of these days but I would be happy to be wrong. If you put some of your tender plants in the ground, make sure you cover them up when the temperature drops.

I am planting some potatoes in half barrels this year covered with a bit of compost and shredded leaves. I had a good crop last year using this method.

When transplanting your tomatoes, bury the stem deep. In the bottom of the hole, put one tablespoon each of Epsom salts and finely crushed egg shells. I read also that a fish head in the hole a few weeks before you are ready to plant them is good. Make sure it is at least 30cm deep so it does not smell and creatures won’t dig them up. I did this a few weeks back and even my dog didn’t bother with it. No smell at all.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac Planting Dates Calculator is a very interesting website. I receive a reminder of what to plant and when for my Zone 6, in Vernon. Not everyone in Vernon has the same zone. It depends where you live in the city. Right now you can sow under cover or indoor: broccoli, celery, leeks, peppers, swiss chard and tomatoes. Sow outdoor or transplant: broccoli, brussels sprouts, summer cabbage, carrots, cauliflower, kale, leeks, leaf lettuce, onions, parsnips, peas, potatoes radish, spinach and swiss chard. Every two weeks, I get a new update.

I added some fresh grass clippings to my compost with a few shredded leaves. This will get the compost heating up and working in a couple days. I have saved bags of leaves and will be using them all summer to mix with the grass clippings and to mulch the garden.

The blueberry bushes have been mulched with pine needles and I have removed all the plants that were growing too close to them and gave them some damp peat moss which they like because of the acidity. They look much better and happier this way. I was reading that old coffee grounds are a good source of nitrogen for blueberry bushes. To fertilize the soil, sprinkle some around your plants and rake it gently into the soil.

I will be having my home annual plant sale on May 5 from 8 a.m. until 4 p.m.. I have over 25 tomato varieties again this year. For more information call 250-558-4556 or email jocelynesewell@gmail.com


@VernonNews
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Jocelyn Sewell

Special to the Morning Star

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