Sunday, April 3, 2011

April Snow

Say, What's all the fuss about?
These are the crocus that I bought on sale last fall - planted real late - they did great.
These greens are right next to the house and we should have radishes soon.

This is direct seed lettuce that needs thinning - I use a tweezers.
This is pellitized seed and needs no thinning - love this method.

If April showers bring May flowers just what does April snow bring? It snowed big fat flakes most of the morning and the weather is not cooperating but planting continues in the greenhouse because everything else is just TOO wet outside. I had a video of the snow but for some reason it just wont load - but then who wants to see more snow?/ not me either.
The onions have sprouted nicely and maybe this year I can get them in as early as possible. Plus I think I said I have some nice shallots that I found in the grocery and intend to plant them even though fall planting might have been better.
The lettuce pictures show the reason I have gone to pelleted seed. The cells will be so much more productive that the ones that I have to thin as thinning first disturbs the roots and I just can't seem to thin as effectively as only planting two pellets in a cell. The pellets from Stokes that were multi-seeded germinated nicely. Some of these plants are destined for the cold frames if they ever dry out. I trenched the water out of the cold frames on Saturday but after today that may not have been much use.
I saw a few parsley seedlings today - unheard of in a week - but I think the hot water treatment does some good as parsley is very slow to germinate. The rest of the crop might take as long as 2 -3 weeks to get out of the ground so keeping them moist is an issue.
I got the pepper crop seeded yesterday and turned up the heat mat a few degrees as peppers like warm and the weather for the next week does not seem to be going in that way. Next I will get on to the tomatoes. The new garden location for them will have to have all the stakes repositioned as we pulled them last fall.
Now for a side issue. We are having renewed discussions here in GB over CHICKENS. The law on the books says: a resident my have 4 chickens (hens) on their property. There seems to be some who want to limit that rule or add a lot of bureaucracy to the issue. One must get a permit but its a "No Fee" permit - something a city clerk or treasure office could issue. Instead you have to go to the Humane Officer and get the permit. The committee in charge of this issue approved nine cats at one residence the same night they had issues with the chicken count.
Let me know if where you live allows urban chickens and how many. Plus just what kind of hoops do you have to jump through to get the permit, if one is required. I am going to another meeting this next week on this issue and would love to hear from my blog readers about this. You can post anonymously if you like but let me hear from you.
Happy Gardening


  1. DJP,

    What is the spacing between your vertically grown tomatoes? I typically use cages with a 3 foot spacing, but it appears from your pictures that you are closer to 10-12 inches between your twine. I've got an 2X8 foot raised bed all prepped for this years mator crop and looking to increase my productivity.

  2. When did you plant your greens next to the house. I'm impressed at their size so early in a Wisconsin spring.

  3. Madison has a permit process for chickens much like a dog license. $10 a year. They also require an animal premises ID # from Wisconsin, which is kind of nutty, but free. I can say I have no idea if this in enforced very much, probably only if you have complaints.

  4. Hi Grubboy,
    yes the tomatoes are much closer than 3 ft typically they are 12 - 18 inches and so that would double your plant amount. Caged tomatoes if not pruned to two stems will as you know make a lot of growth and prevent the light from getting to your fruit. I got rid of the because I did not like the winter storage of the cages and the too much cutting of my arms getting fruits.
    Happy Gardening

  5. Hi Richard,
    To tell the truth I planted most of those in fall, the radishes were planted recently and that is what is in the front. The lettuce and mustards survived the winter and we have already started eating them. Multi-season planting is the goal.
    Happy Gardening