Back Forty

Back Forty update and seed starting

I know that there is little point in dreading the weather, but tomorrow is supposed to be very windy and rainy. I have visions of chasing my greenhouse across the yard in the cold rain. I went out and stomped the stakes down as best I could, and that’s all I can do, I guess.

Lettuce and carrots have germinated in the greenhouse, and I have more volunteer leeks, so it looks like I won’t have to start any inside this year. Since my leeks prematurely went to seed in that freak show of weather last spring, I have leeks EVERYwhere. I like that, so there’s no problem. I can actually tell the difference between a baby leek and a wild onion now, but please don’t ask me to tell you. You just gotta be there.

All the seeds I planted in early February are coming up, but there’s no sign of asparagus shoots. Half of the artichokes have reemerged and I’m quite happy with that. I halfway expected for them all to be dead. The Tuscan kale that I planted last spring is going to seed now. I guess that I should plant some more in the winter garden bed under the tree, since it liked it there.

Inside, my peppers are FINALLY coming up. I didn’t put the heating pad under them like I said that I was going to, at first. I put them in front of a heating vent and figured that would do it. But it didn’t, and the heating pad went under them a week ago. Now most of them are coming up except the Paprika Pimiento and Red Marconi peppers and the Rosa Bianca eggplants. The most vigorous seedlings are the ones I saved from the most delicious pepper I grew last year that I think was a Hungarian wax pepper. Yay! On Sunday, I plan to start tomato seeds, and maybe a few other plants as far as two bags of starting mix will take me.

The Back Forty is ugly on the whole – there are white fabric covered rows and sheets of plastic and the god-awful greenhouse marring the view of the beautiful daffodils, lenten rose, and Nanking cherry bushes coming into bloom. The rhodedendron that was so beautiful last year is three-quarters dead. I trimmed away much of the dead branches and I’m saving some forked branches and twigs for art work.

But soon, soon, it will be lovely again, and I’ll have about a 2-3 month window to enjoy it and get as much work done as possible before the mosquito guerrillas take over until the first frost.

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