Tuesday, March 10, 2009

A Pot to Pea In

I put the peas in their pots, outside, cold or not. It was chilly yesterday, cloudy, rain threatening, but I decided that if I wait too long, it will be warmer than they like. So in they went. In vegetable gardening, it is often tempting to be cautious, to fear failure because we have only one shot for getting it right this year. But really, it doesn't matter, its not like I'll starve. Its an experiment to learn, to know by doing. So in they go.

If you look closely, you can see the TP tubes under the pea plants. Apparently pea seeds like to be planted directly into the garden, but I didn't do this. In order to protect the plant while planting them, I peeled off the paper tube on the lower portion, but kept it together on the upper portion. This seemed to work out fine.

Broccoli starts have been getting bigger, all have well-developed sets of leaves. I think they will go into their planter by this weekend. Right now, however, they will remain in the cold-frame day and night. Behind you can see the failed "winter-sown" broccoli. Better luck next time. The great advantage of starting seeds in your window is that they sprout quickly and you can get a jump on the season. Winter-sown will work, but there is not much of this jump.


  1. I am definitely putting mine out today. Hopefully the squirrel will leave them alone.

    I was not sure if now was the right time to put stuff out and what should be put out. I have a few citrus trees that I know could tolerate the weather but am never sure if I am just doing unnecessary damage.

  2. You might want to wait on the citrus, unless you have a protected southern exposure. Its supposed to go below freezing on Wed or Thurs night. I'm putting out only the things I know can handle some cold nights, like broccoli and snap peas. Basil and tomatoes are in the cold frame for the day, but in the house at night.

    The key is that these things are tender, they just need protection like water bottles or plastic covers or southern exposures with heat holding walls and stuff. Experimenting is the best way to find out!

  3. I'm doing the same thing with my peas - in the toilet paper pot! I think I will also rip out the bottom as you did. My broccoli did not make it in my dim window, though. Yours look very spry and healthy!

  4. Well at least you're not peaing into the wind!


    That last pea shot is beautiful. Um...oh dear.

    (Sugar)Snapping myself out of it: when do you expect to harvest? :-)

  5. Jen,

    I didn't "fold under" my tp tubes, so I just peeled the sides off till about 1 inch near the top. The roots were already sticking out the bottom. The cold-frame has made the broccoli a success so far, without it I think leggy and all that. But my window does face south. Enjoy those peas.


    We'll have to pun-ish you for all that!
    Harvest I hope by early late march to early april. I think its about a 55 day maturity. Thats about where my maturity is too!

  6. "early late march" -whats that?

  7. I have been putting some of the things that I planted in toilet rolls in bigger pots as is (many are going to friends). I had cut the toilet rolls in half, so it doesn't seem necessary with mine to pull any extra off.

    I partly wanted to put two of my citrus plants out because they both have fungus gnats. They have already done some damage to a nasturtium I planted in the meyer lemon pot.

  8. I know what early late March is, dude. It's the 24th.

  9. PS - Frank, have you considered planting potatoes? My mom grows them in pots, very succesfully. A permaculture couple I know grows them in cardboard boxes.

  10. Marie,

    My wife threw a couple of potato pieces into a pot last year and look out! Took over everything. I would love to grow potatoes, just have limited space and pots that get sun. My landlord needs to remove those last few telephone poles from the front and then I'll have another 25 feet to work with! Full sun, same conditions as the flowery front yard garden- total vegetable paradise.

    That said, he's threatening once again to call in the vinyl siders, wreckers of all things garden. We'll have to see.

  11. Shana,

    Gnats sound bad, but not deadly. Tell me, what are they doing? FO you think the cold air will do them in, but the citrus will be spared?

  12. The topsoil of my kaffir lime is covered with them, but it is a nearly three year old tree so I know that it will be fine. The same goes for my meyer lemon tree, but I had recently put a small nasturtium in the pot of my meyer lemon and I think that they are slowly killing that one. I think I will just wait until the weather warms up to put them out. It is not really worth it to just save a little nasturtium which is easy to replace.

  13. How long you've had that nasturtium indoors? Have you always kept them indoors. I always think of them as a happy, not-too-hot liking, outdoor plant.


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