Monday, February 8, 2010

Seedy Monday

From the Country….

Spent the last two days organizing seeds form last year and ordering a fresh new crop of seeds for this season. It’s always exciting to peruse seed catalogues with their glossy pictures and snappy write ups, filling you with the idea that you can grow anything! The truth is not every fruit and vegetable is gonna grow in your soil. (oh how I long for a crop of artichokes!) Our short growing season doesn’t allow a lot of leeway for certain vegetables that take there time to produce a crop. It’s often a crapshoot for things like tomatoes and peppers (especially the hot varieties). Its not to say that you can’t, It’s just you have a lot of variables often not in your favour (the horrible all consuming late frost in June and that of the early variety that can veer it’s frosty head your way early into September). It is all about the season and whether Momma Nature is gonna be good to you this year. My Granny says to never put a sensitive seedling out until after the full moon in June. I live by these words. Although I have resigned myself to the fact that a meaty heirloom tomato (you know the one, bigger than your fist with that sweet but tart juice that runs down your chin with every bite...) just isn’t gonna happen here on this farm there are some nice alternatives. Although I long for a crop of Cherokee Purple tomatoes, wild cherry varieties is what I have to settle on. They are super sweet and about as tiny as a marble. They have a monstrous plant and are very prolific. You can harvest then in clusters (just snip the whole branch off) or individually pick them (with the patience of a saint…) A must have for the garden. I order mine from Salt Spring Seeds. This year, for me, it’s all about greens (both Asian and various lettuces) zucchini, some squash, Thai eggplant, herbs and heritage poultry. The last thing you can’t order from a catalogue but that’s another story so stay tuned for that one….
The Roosters in the barn are in their prime crowing away, it’s almost deafening when you go in there. I have way too many roosters and not enough hens, the product of hatching your own. To my amazement there isn’t any cock fighting, everyone seems to be getting along just swell. Maybe too well though, then hens are getting drilled pretty heavily. Poor girls, all the want to do is dust bathe, eat and lay the odd egg (it is winter for goodness sake!) and now they have to contend with the likes of probably over dozen roosters. I am often flabbergasted of how blatantly obvious these guys are, doing it right in front of me. They often meet with the end of my rubber boot! I have to stick up for the ladies! The girls spend their days in hiding with their backs to the wall of the coop their only safe haven is the nesting boxes where they lay their eggs and then I come along and steal their hard earned work. Anyway, I am out to the barn to collect eggs and then finish my seed ordering. I will leave you with this quote I found from my discounted date book that I recently purchased.

I’m not afraid of storms, for I am learning how to sail my ship.
-- Louisa May Alcott

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