Seed Starting For Early Spring Crops-Class handouts

The Seed Starting For Early Spring Crops class that I taught today was sponsored by one of the organizations I’m a member of called Home Grown New Mexico. Home Grown New Mexico puts on many classes about growing, raising, making and preserving your food throughout the year. They are about sustainability, urban farming and growing organically which is right up my alley and the classes are open to the public. If you’d like to see what other classes/workshop Home Grown New Mexico is putting on, check out their website homegrownnewmexico.org.

Now, here are the handouts if you weren’t able to make the class or if you didn’t get them as we ran out of them during the class today-it was definitely a full house with about 35 people attending. It was a good mix of Master Gardeners, Interns and the public that attended. I really like to teach when you all show up! Hope you learned something and enjoyed it!

Starting Cold Hardy Plants in Early Spring Inside-2014

seed germination chart

PRESPOUTING SEEDS

Cold hardy crops for early spring in March-April

COOL-WARM SEASON CROPS

Seed starting INSIDE

I’ve been planting seeds INSIDE for a couple of weeks now. Here is my update on my seed starting endeavors this spring so far.

PEAS-Not everything is successful-My pea seeds I planted inside have NOT done well as I had hoped. They are barely coming up now inside so I planted more outside and if these make it, I will add to the other seeds that I planted outside on Saturday. I think the heating mat was too hot for them so I put them on a table under the lights but with no heat. We will see..

FAVA BEANS-I’m so excited-I’ve never grown fava beans before but are trying them this year. I sprouted fava beans that I got from that Homegrown seed swap and bought some more that I got from Spanish Table Market here in Santa Fe. The companies would like to say that the ones they sell you to eat are different then the ones they sell you to grow.  If they are treated then that would be true but so far I have not found that to be the case. They are both sprouting just fine. Today I saw three of them breaking ground in their little pots on the heat mat under the lights. Once up I will transplant them outside as they like the cold. I’ll talk about them later.

CHARD, BOK CHOY seeds planted-MAR 13-The chard and bok choy germinated in 2 days!

BORAGE seeds planted-MAR 13-Germinated in 3 days!

MORE LETTUCE-seeds planted-MAR 13-just starting to come up

SPINACH seeds planted inside as well as outside -MAR 13-Not up yet

TOMATOES-seeds planted today-Sunday, MAR 18-planted 27 different varieties! Hope to put them out 8 weeks from now-mid May or sooner. Last year I planted tomato seeds inside on Mar 21.

POTATOES-I’ve been chitting them for a week now. Chitting is getting the potato eyes to sprout.

The next major inside seed starting will be in 2 weeks-Basil, oregano, marjoram, zinnias and probably a lot more.

Planting peas on St. Patrick’s Day

I always use St. Patrick’s Day as the day to remind me to plant peas. I don’t always get them in exactly on that day but it is my reminder to get them in soon. The weather was great this past week so I planted peas yesterday on St. Patrick’s Day before the horrible winds hit today. The winds were horrific up here at the house today-I bet 60+ mph. UGLY!! The bed I usually plant peas in has garlic in it this year so I have to put them somewhere else as PEAS DO NOT LIKE TO GROW BY GARLIC. Wherever you plant them, amend the soil with some aged horse manure (or compost) digging it in the soil.

Then put some legume inoculate on the peas (if you have the powder form) or under them (granulated form) in the row before burying them. Legume inoculate is an organic bacteria that fixes nitrogen from the air and attaches it to the roots of peas or beans making nitrogen available to them. I can just see the little bacteria grabbing the nitrogen from the air and taking it down by the roots! The next season, leave the pea ROOTS in the soil and plant a crop that is a heavy feeder by them. Once you’ve used the legume inoculate, you don’t have to add it again to the soil as the bacteria will continue to live there. Ahhh! The growing season has begun!