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Indoor Seedlings for the Summer Garden

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I started seeds for the summer garden in a flat indoors, back in early February. Many of the seeds germinated and have grown, but it always is amazing to me that each kind of seed has its own schedule.

Mostly tomato plants, started in February.

Tomatillo seedlings emerged first, then the Rutgers tomatoes, then the Cherokee Purple, Amish and Wuhib tomatoes in unison with the Jalepeno peppers. The eggplant and Pasillo Bajillo peppers were next, the Purple Beauty and Golden Greek peppers followed, and the Red Cheese peppers never showed up at all.

Pepper and eggplant babies, started in February.

The flat was started a week or so earlier than usual, because I wanted to have some seedlings up to have a “show & tell” for a seed starting talk I was giving. Now, though, I am stuck with the consequences of that early start.

The consequences aren’t all bad, because peppers and eggplants are pretty slow to germinate and gain size, relative to tomatoes at least. The downside is that the tomatillo plants are going to be overgrown before it is warm enough to plant them outside. I may need to toss those little plants into the compost and start that crop again.

Originally, all the plants in the two pictures above were in the same flat, but the tomato and tomatillo plants grew quickly enough that I’ve already moved them to individual containers, to give their roots room to reach out and grow.

I’ll be shifting the Jalepeno and eggplant babies into separate containers soon, because they also are getting big enough to need their own spaces.

Meanwhile, out in the yard, during some glorious, spring-like weather, I’ve planted little patches of beets, carrots, lettuces, and chicory, interspersed with radishes. Those patches all are in the bed that will hold sweet potatoes in the summer.

Since the planting time for sweet potatoes is so late (end of May to mid June), those spring crops should have plenty of time to reach maturity before they need to make way for the main summer crop for that space. If all goes well, this plan will actually work!

Home gardening can provide a lot of good food for families and communities. It’s also some work, but I love it. This blog is about the garden and yard where I “grow my own,” NW of Atlanta, Georgia.


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