So this year, string beans, parsley, basil and tomatoes are in for sure. I'm going to try some new things like thyme and oregano in addition to zucchini. I tried growing flowers last year but actually none grew after being transplanted. The green thumb apparently extends only as far as my knuckle!
Garden stores and outlets like Home Depot, Lowe's, Target and The Christmas Tree Shop are stocked with seed packets, topsoil, plant food, tomato cages and other equipment needed for the amateur gardener. I've already purchased some of the seeds and today went online to see when I should start sowing them indoors (indoors being my garage). I discovered that I might be a bit late getting started. The rule of thumb for most plants is 8 weeks before the danger of frost is over, and that makes me a couple of weeks behind schedule.
Last year, I invested in seed starter planters and I saved them all. This year, especially since I'm already a bit behind, I'm going to purchase a grow light to keep them warm and hopefully encourage them to germinate a bit faster.
So consider this a kind of 'public service' announcement if you are planning to grow flowers or veggies. Get started this weekend like I will be doing. If all goes well, the seedlings should be planted in the ground around Mother's Day when this long, cold winter and chilly early spring will officially be at an end. Will keep you posted.
Here is a handy planting guide found online that might help:
- Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Eggplant, Lettuce:8 weeks before the last frost; takes five to ten days to germinate: germination temperature of around 70F.
- Peppers: 8 weeks before the last frost; 5 and 10 days to germinate; germination temperature of around 80F.
- Tomatoes: 6 weeks before the last frost; 5 and 10 days to germinate; germination temperature of around 80F.
- Watermelon, Cantaloupe, Muskmelon , Cucumbers, Squash: 4 weeks before the last frost; 5 to 10 days to germinate; germination temperature of around 85F.
- Artichokes, Leeks, Onions, Celery: 10 to 12 weeks before the last frost; 6 and 10 days to germinate; germination temperature of around 70F.