Friday, February 8, 2013

Spring fever

Yep, I have a good case of spring fever. Last night I started 18 tomato seeds. All heirloom. (Gold medal, .brandy wine, and flame hillbilly.) Today I am planting a hybrid. Beef master.. Just in case the others fail due to what ever mother nature throws at us. I am not one for gmo food. But this is one of the earliest  hybrids. And are the results of cross pollination. To improve on the health or size of the plant. It to me is not like a test tube modification.  Or chemically engineered product.

 Heirloom tomatoes are old varieties grown from seed saved from season to season. Heirlooms are a category unto themselves. They tend to be less disease resistant and "wilder" in appearance. Fans insist that their flavor and uniqueness make up for any disadvantages.
Hybrid tomatoes are developed to give growers the best characteristics of all varieties. Fruit size, crop yield and disease resistance are all traits of hybrids.

 I use a small pinch of stuffing like you would use in a pillow or toy. I place it in the bottom of a shot glass size cup. This works well for wicking water  up to the soil, with out soaking the soil. After the plant gets a good start, I transplant it in a 12 oz cup, or a self watering soda bottle. I have had very good results this way.I reuse these cups to replant. So they are not wasted.
I use a box covered with trash bags to make like a green house or terrarium affect. In a few days the seed should sprout.
I took a walk around my yard today and found signs of early or false spring. We have had some warm days. Not normal for this time of year. So I took a few photos.

This is a self watering drum I cut in half to make 2 planters. I have asparagus planted in this one. And should be able to cut off and eat some of it this year. I planted it from seed a few years ago.The sticks you see in it are last years plants. They look like wood sticks. I should have added more dirt..
This photo shows a juice bottle in the corner to add water to the bottom.
 It also allows me to see the water level. So I can add more if needed.

 The photo below is elephant ear garlic starting to grow already.

I have Iris starting to green up too.  And daffodil are up 2 inches. 
So it looks like an early spring is on its way.

 If you want more information on how I did the containers please click on this link
 It will take you to my old garden blog. I have not up dated it since 2009/10. I gave up on gardening after the summer of 09. Too much rain. And last year drought. This year I am planning to be ready for what ever mother nature throws at us. By using more self watering containers. And or umbrellas. HEHEHE.

 Hybrid plants, such as ‘Big Boy’, ‘Beefmaster’ and ‘Early Girl’ tomatoes will produce viable seed. Plants grown from that seed, however, will not be just like the hybrid parents; instead, they will be a completely new combination of the good and bad traits of the plants that were initially crossed. It’s impossible to predict just how the seedling plant will perform or what qualities the fruit will have.

Have a wonderful day and remember to laugh and play.Photobucket


greekwitch said...

I love your method! I do not use many seeds( i do not hava a garden, just an apartment that looks like one).I want to play in the dirt again. I miss that a lot. Ever since i got pregnant i have n't really worked with my plants. They need my attention. Now that the weather will get a little bit warmer i will tend to their needs.

angela said...

Love your wicking beds, as I've said the tomatoes did not do well this year way too much heat. But we harvested lots of silverbeat, and are on our third crop of beet root. The carrots did well as did the onions but the chickens dug up my beans and eggplants so I will have to rig up something to protect my winter garden as we have been having much more success during the winter.

Wendy said...

Hi Ernie - how creative you are! I do remember your posts from a few years ago. I was impressed with your gardening techniques back then (especially the soda bottle one) and I'm still impressed at how you manage to make things work - out of very little materials.

Do I sense a renewed feeling of strength in you? Awesome! Mother Nature, here we come. We're ready for whatever you throw at us!!

Happy Gardening, Grammy - hope you continue to have nice warm days.

greekwitch said...

Hi honey! Thank you so much for your comment. It relaxed me as a hug! You are always my sunshine!
Lots and lots of love!

greekwitch said...

As always my heart goes to you from half the world away. I hope you feel wonderful and that you will spend a great weekend! Lots and lots of love!