Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Happy Earth Day!

I thought this would be the perfect time to share some of the little veggies I have coming up in my garden.

Lettuce


This first photo is a bit of a cheat because this lettuce managed to stay alive through the winter! It started really growing during the past few weeks. I planted some from seed this spring and here's what the little baby version looks like:


The seeds came in a mixed pack. They turn into a gourmet mix of lettuce and it's fun to see the different forms it comes in. This one is a little bit more red:


Mesculin (also Mesclun)


Mesculin is another type of fancy mixed lettuce. It will be fun to see what this lacy little one grows into.

Dwarf Kale


Isn't the dwarf kale cute? It looks like a little bow for now. These are called blue dwarf kale, so we'll see how blue they get. They're supposed to stay relatively small and not spread out too much. I was reading in a magazine recently that miniature kale is the hot new thing because it's ultra nutritious. It's like all the nutrients got compressed into a tiny little package. Funny enough, I read that in a fashion magazine on the "IN" page. So my garden will have the cool new accessory for spring.

Arugula


I love arugula so much! I bought these seeds last spring on ebay and I swear they have a germination rate of near 100%. It's nuts! Arugula everywhere!

This is one that has grown a little faster than the others.


Spinach


It looks like it's going to fly away! But look how different the mustard spinach is.

Mustard Spinach


I'm excited to be growing spinach this year and to have it coming along so well! I can't remember ever growing it in the past. I've read that the mustard spinach is pretty spicy!

Cilantro


You can never have enough of this, which is good because there are countless little sprouts out there. I think some decided to grow itself along with what I planted.

Dill


The dill was difficult to photograph because it's so tiny! No, that isn't an egg behind the little dill. It's one of the many rocks I put in my pots to discourage the chipmunks from digging around.

Sugar Snap Peas


It looks like a little bunny rabbit. This is a view showing more:


I think I have nine or ten coming up.

It's amazing how well all these little plants are doing during a Wisconsin "spring". It's snowing lightly right now. But they're hardy plants that can take it. We still have a long time until tomatoes and basil can be grown outside. I have started some basil seeds, though.

If any of you would like to get started with growing vegetables or herbs from seed, let me know. I can help you if you aren't used to gardening. It doesn't take much to get going. I bought most of my seeds at Dollar Tree for only 25 cents a package! A few packs were 20 cents at Big Lots. The dill is even in this Dollar Tree container I cut holes in the bottom of.

So growing seeds isn't that difficult, it doesn't have to be expensive, and it is really rewarding. Besides saving a ton of money, you'll find that the vegetables and herbs you grow taste a whole lot better than what you buy from the store. That and you'll feel more connected to nature and learn about many of the little critters in it as you take care of your plants.

Butterfly Animated Gif Transparent 400px by 400px 91 kb

If you are already into gardening, I'm open to a seed exchange!

Also on the topic of nature, I picked up a book at the library yesterday that I've been meaning to read for a while. Wicked Bugs! Look at this beautiful cover:


The awesome, intricate back cover:


To give you an idea of the illustrations:


I picked a bad customer for this example, but I guess the nice bugs probably didn't make it into the book. I think I remember reading about this book on some of your blogs a while back. I've only read the intro so far, but I can't wait to read the stories of bugs behaving badly!