Cottage Gardening forum: #7 Piggy Swap and Friends Chat The sowing begins

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Apr 12, 2014 8:15 AM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
ok thank you
Apr 12, 2014 2:05 PM CST
Name: Danita
GA Zone 7b/8
Arlene, Sounds like you had a fun trip! The next time you are visiting there, you may want to check out Bench Farms near Toledo. I've not been there but I've heard good things about it from hummingbird gardeners. They apparently carry a large variety of plants with many butterfly and hummingbird plants. They have drool-worthy inventory lists on their website.
Apr 12, 2014 4:23 PM CST
Name: Julianna
Victoria, BC USDA Zone 8
I've gotten lots done in the last few days of mild weather. Most of the Asian brassicas have been transplanted except for the Red Choi and Red Velvet Tatsoi that I had to re-sow due to damping off. All of the kales are transplanted along with RickCorey's Large-Leaf Shungiku and Red Frills Mustard. I sowed all of my lettuces, arugulas, watercress, and mache in the Lettuce Bed and Beets, Radishes, Carrots, and cute Japanese Mikado Baby Turnips in the Roots Bed. I'm planning to put the chards in between the rows of roots. They're still hardening off in the garage. Last week, I sowed RickCorey's Carouby de Mausanne Snow Peas and a Golden Sugar Snap Pea that I got from Adaptive Seeds, the same place where I got the Sugar Magnolia Purple Snap Pea that we raved about last year. Joseph uses the Sugar Magnolia with some of his pea research. I sowed Salt Water Taffy Swirls Sweet Peas in between the edible peas for some colour and fragrance. I sure hope they come up this time. I think my issues with sweet peas may have been that I've tried sowing them too late when it's warm, when I like being outside! I also sowed a long porch planter with Tom Thumb Dwarf Shelling Peas and Cupid Pink Dwarf Sweet Peas.

Tomorrow is Basil and Tomato sowing day. We have rain in the forecast, so after Palm Sunday Mass, that's my big plan for the day. This is the first year that I have not had my tomato list worked out before sowing day. I've still got to look up some varieties!! Blinking

We have some cold weather next Tuesday and Wednesday, so those heavy poly plastic covers are going to come in very handy! Here's a look at the Asian Brassica Bed partially planted and open at both ends to provide some shade from the heat of the day (it got over 20C the last couple of days - well above normal) and also to provide air movement so the plants don't overheat:

Thumb of 2014-04-12/Sorellina/e6e3e5

This is how that bed looked today with the cover off:

Thumb of 2014-04-12/Sorellina/771be8
Grazie a tutti,
Apr 12, 2014 8:05 PM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
BrendaVR.... Glad to see ya popping in and know you survived the arctic blast up there. Bet you really have to cordinate your planting real closely. Heck you have such a long winter by the time you fully thaw and warm up, it will probably be winter for you again.

Misti... It not too late for peppers. I getting ready to do another batch of them. Now that temps have warmed up don't have to worry about having them under heat for so long.

Need another Id, please. Here is that plan I was talking about that looks like grass but it not. years and years later and still no flower that is if it is a flower. Ignore the crushed pot, high winds here blow everything around. It does spread and I did find out that it does have a tiny bulb attached to it. Anybody have any guess maybe of what it might be?

Thumb of 2014-04-13/starlight1153/7ddb2a

Rain coming in again next couple of days and brrrrrrrrrrr the cold coming back in. Frost with possible hail is predicted.

Danita... Awesome call with that shrub. Thumbs up That one is not one a lot of folks know about. It is pretty for sure. Had seeds of it at one time, now I wonder if I still do. Oh how I wish my seeds would organize themselves.

Sorellina... Looking good there. Big Grin
Apr 12, 2014 11:47 PM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
Thanks Star. I will start more tomorrow then. Im not sure on the plant. We got a lot of yard work done today, rain commin tomorrow here too.
Apr 13, 2014 7:39 AM CST
Name: aka GardenQuilts
Facebook, NGA
and the beloved Winston the pug
Too late to start pepper and tomato seeds this year. I will just pick up plants once I am settled. I can still plant other things -potted herbs, beans, squash, corn, cucumbers, melons. Like everywhere else in this area, the soil is rocky clay with trees or tree stumps and roots. It is easiest to grow plants in raised beds, but the potting mix can get expensive if you do it all at once. My goal is raised beds for veggies and a naturalistic cottage garden for roses and flowers. First, I have to finish digging, checking for signs of life in the pot ghetto and finish packing!

FYI, there is a good app on the allthingplants site. You can type inn your zip code and get the best planting days for your area. It is similar to the farmer almanac's link posted earlier. I printed both out and put them in my veggie seed box. I wish they had the same thing for flowers. Maybe there is a link, but I haven't found it yet. If anyone knows of one, please share.

I am enjoying everyone's seed babies and gardens.
Apr 13, 2014 10:04 AM CST
Name: aka GardenQuilts
Facebook, NGA
and the beloved Winston the pug
Guess what I saw while walking Winston today?

Slate paver rocks! I had made a slate walkway with groundcovers planted in between the slates in my old townhouse garden. I also had slate as stepping stones in the flower beds. With a bigger yard I can use some more....don't tell the movers.

As part of a deal to move out before my lease is up, the new owners are paying a month's rent and moving expenses. They may regret the latter. They saw my house, garage and pot ghetto, so they knew what they were getting into...

For ground covers, I tried Irish moss, creeping thyme and snow in summertime. The creeping thyme did the best. Irish moss would prefer shade, I think. I have seeds for all three, so I can see what works in the new place.

I have to take more pictures of the new place. I put a new 16G card in my camera. I haven't been able to read the pictures. I think the camera took the pictures, but my old card reader attachment didn't read the card. It is so old that Memorex doesn't list it on their site anymore.
Apr 13, 2014 12:13 PM CST
Name: kacee
southern california
I dont know how many of you have ponds, but every year I buy all new pond plants in the spring, and every year they die out, due to the cold, in the winter. nothing extravagant just hyacinths, duck week etc. this winter was so mild everything made it. will not have to restock anything. not sure why this is a worry, but I hope it doesnt mean a hotter than usual summer.
Apr 13, 2014 2:13 PM CST
Name: Jonna
Belgium, Europe
risingcreek wrote:I dont know how many of you have ponds, but every year I buy all new pond plants in the spring, and every year they die out, due to the cold, in the winter. nothing extravagant just hyacinths, duck week etc. this winter was so mild everything made it. will not have to restock anything. not sure why this is a worry, but I hope it doesnt mean a hotter than usual summer.

Try the Iris pseudacorus if you like it. It's very hardy, it survives at least -15°C here in my pond. If you want them, I can send you seeds.
Apr 13, 2014 2:32 PM CST
Name: Jonna
Belgium, Europe
I'm extremely busy with all kind of things, but I do check the posts here regulary. It's really impossible to tell you about all the seeds that already germinated here, but I want to let you know this year I have so many containers germinated. I can't keep up with it. I have sprouts in over 250 containers!!! At least 50 of those were winter sowed more than a year ago. A lesson to learn: don't empty your containers too soon. Some of the 'old' ones who germinated here are : Iris (a lot of species), hardy Geraniums, Erodium, Colchium, Narcissus, Allliums and - I was very surprised about that- a lot of special Penstemon species. And there were more, mostly rock garden plants, but also trees and shrubs.

Also want to tell you that the Cosmos atrosanguineus survived here in the stables. Most of the plants survived, so I hope they will bloom earlier and set more seed than the few they did last year. Really would like to spread the seeds of this fertile string.

Apr 13, 2014 3:30 PM CST
Name: Danita
GA Zone 7b/8
Ella, I worked as a florist for a while which helped with the ID.
Could those be the Crocosmia masoniorum that we got from Colchie in the 2009 Piggy Swap? (over at DG) Mine haven't bloomed much at all but I just figured they didn't like me. ^_^

Jonna, exciting news about the new seed-babies! I'm especially excited to hear that the Cosmos survived! Hurray!
Apr 13, 2014 4:26 PM CST
Name: Dianne
Sacramento, CA, zone 9a
Jonna - I have kept about 12 of my milkjugs for a year - maybe that wasn't such a bad idea after all. Good to know that some things can still germinate after a long time.

I am going away for 3 weeks, and hope that everything will survive. I will have to postpone seeding my basils, cucumber, and summer squashes until mid-May. I stuck some cantaloupe seeds in the ground, and some bush beans and hope they will germinate and be alive when I get back.

All the spigarello, Brussels sprouts, bok choys, and kohlrabis have gone to seed so I pulled most of them out except for 1 each to collect seeds later.

Have a good Easter, all, and "talk" to you in a few weeks.

Apr 14, 2014 8:43 AM CST
Name: starlight1153 Zone 8a/b
Danita.... That must have been fun. I just don't have the eye or the cordination for floral work. Picking a bunch of flowers and adding a bit of Baby's Breath and a fern leaf or two and a ribbon is about my talents.

I even took floral design classes and, I have a bunch of books collecting dust,and mine was always the sad looking ones. Only thing I ever did good and enjoyed was making a basket with shrub leaves for fillers, some assorted flowers , but the thing I loved was taking Glad's and making a handle for the basket out of them.

Nope, didn't get no seed from the swap for these. When I digging Iris at a friend's to bring back, these were growing around and mixed in with it. IO thought it might be a Crocosmia too, but year after year no bloom and no clustering. It always just looks like grass pieces.

Drives me crazy. It's a big tease is what it is. I keep looking at it dy after day, year after year and keep hoping that something special will grow and bloom or it will do something and nope it just keep sitting there bugging me. I even ripped hundreds of pieces of it out and still it comes back to haunt me. Blinking

But Thanks, because you did help me to figure out which of the other Crocosmia I have growing. Hurray! I have Lucifer and a friend gave me like 5 pots of the beautiful orange and didn't know the name of them.

I think it took about 4 years before my friends orange ones finally filled out a one gallon pot decent and put out maybe three or four racemes of the flowers. I'm hoping the ice and snow hasn't killed all my pots. No sign of life yet in any of them. I had repotted and divided in the fall and the darn things were still green and had leaves until the ice blast. They need to get busy and grow, I got hummers waiting on the flowers from them. Hilarious!

Rising.... They was talking a couple of weeks ago that this year because of El Nino that we was gonna have a drought year. Sad For once I hope they are wrong. Heck they already have us on water restrictions and raised the water rates even though we have plenty of water now. They getting ready for what's coming. We getting ready for thunderstorms coming in here in the next hour or so and another 2 and a half to 3 " of water.

Andi... I am happy for you. Glad they gonna do that. I would make sure that they set up when the truck coming and such so the bill on them and not on you.

Jonna... Glad you having a good time and getting new babies too. Maybe since you had such a mild winter you'll have a longer growing season this year and be able to grow some things that take a bit longer.

Joesph.. How you coming? You all planted in the ground yet?

Apr 14, 2014 8:55 AM CST
Name: Misti
Fate, TX
seriously? we are dropping to 34F tonight. Almost the record. I hope my babies will all be ok out there. Blinking
Apr 14, 2014 9:33 AM CST
Name: Terese
Leesburg, FL zone9b
Wisconsin Dells Area, zone4
Lets move on to the next thread.... this one is quite long and takes time to load...

New thread
Terese -- Leesburg, FL & Lake Delton, Wi
My Email is my userID at

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