Last years seeds after being transplanted into larger containers.
Our Shop "Greenhouse". This is the growing center that Michael built me for about $70.
It is that time once again here on our little farm. I am starting seeds for our late winter/ early spring garden. I have learned that there are a few things that must be overcome when growing under grow lights. First, the plants must be large enough to plant outside. Growing under grow lights is a bit more unsure than growing in a greenhouse. Due to this, I have to factor in a little more growing time for my plants. This is easy by starting the seeds earlier than usual. Secondly, I must make sure that there is plenty of time to hardin off the plants before planting them in the garden. Our growing environment is much different than a greenhouse, and I must take into account that our little plants haven't been outside at all. To hardin off plants, place them outside for a few hours each day. This process takes about a week and the time outside needs to be increased each day. This is a very important step to remember and plan for when growing under grow lights.
This year I am thinking about using hoops over our beds to enable us to plant outside earlier. I want to increase the amount of produce that we grow here on our farm and decrease the amount of food that I must purchase at the grocery store. (We are still harvesting Collard Greens from our garden, but our lettuce has endured one frost too many for this year).
I will be starting Cabbage, Broccoli, Onions, Cauliflower, Spinach, and a few flowers that I want to use on our front porch for spring color. I will also start some different types of lettuce in a few more weeks. Our family loves broccoli so I would like to freeze a lot of this veggie. Michael and I are the only ones to eat cooked cabbage so I only need to freeze enough of that to use in soups and have some to fry upon occasion. However, we all enjoy fresh Cole slaw so I need to plant enough to have Cole slaw and a Cabbage Noodle Salad often. We only like to eat cauliflower fresh so I won't need any of that to freeze. I add cauliflower to our garden salads and I make a wonderful cauliflower salad. Our family also likes to have cauliflower on vegetable platters served with dip. We love having baby spinach in our salads. It is wonderful served fresh, but I must admit I do not like garden spinach cooked. I love spinach out of the grocery store cans, but I could not eat fresh spinach cooked. Michael likes it sauteed with garlic and olive oil. I couldn't even eat it like that. I will stick to fresh spinach salads. I love to make a salad with fresh spinach, pecans or walnuts, and strawberries served with a Raspberry Vinaigrette dressing.
I will post pictures of our plants as they start to grow!
grace and peace,