Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Pushing the Season

Wow! The last few days have been so lovely I have had to literally stop myself from planting! When it is so sunny and feels so warm, I want to put everything outside and in the ground. Fortunately my mother, with her fifty years of experience of Alaska gardening, is able pull up old planting journals where time after time there will be killing frosts the middle of May. If the frost doesn't kill the Cole plants, it causes them to bolt. Actually, temperatures below 40 will cause broccoli and cauliflower to bolt, that is produce tiny heads. This reminder cools my planting fever and I will hold off planting the broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, zucchini and chard for at least two more weeks.

There is still plenty for me to plant. I am planting garlic and onions, a true plethora (love that word) of them. Also I am going to plant peas(already up and growing in their sixpacks in the cold frames.) I planted some turnips and beets in 250 count seed trays and I hope to get them in the garden in the next few days. Normally I direct seed turnips and beets right in the garden, but I am hoping to get them a bit earlier this year. I tried it last year and we harvested turnips three weeks earlier than normal.

Tomorrow we will plant the corn. That is always an exciting day. It can't take the cool weather either, but we give it extra protection and cross our fingers alot!

Since I took the mulch off of the flower beds last week the perennials are jumping. The peonies and bleeding hearts always survive as well as the delphiniums. This year the companula has really spread. Three years ago I put in some philipendula and thalictrum, both are thriving! A big surprise is that the sea holly and the clematis that I planted last year are coming back. They are both zone 3/4 and I didn't expect that they would make it. Lilies are popping up everywhere (I think I should divide them this season). I still see no signs of the astillbe or the goats beard, but it is still early. One perennial we can always count on is rhubarb and I am happy to report that we will have rhubarb in time to make pie for Mother's Day--this Sunday! Isn't Spring just the best!

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