Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sunflower Seed Sprouts

Use 1-2 cups of  sunflower seed.

Spray with bleach spray and rinse thoroughly, then soak seed for at least 6 hrs.

Add soil-less mix to tray bottom - just cover the grooves.

Rinse the seeds one more time and then spread evenly in tray.

I really do not cover the seed just make sure it is all spread out.

Cover with wet paper toweling and a tray lid.

Cover with a cloth and place in a bottom warm spot - mine are on top of grow lights.

In about three days you should have sprouted seed so uncover them.

Keep them watered (spray or liquid) with lid in place but in light now for growth.

After about 6 days I start taking the plastic cover off and allowing them more full sun.

These are ready - I pull them out or cut them and enjoy "yummy" home grown sprouts.

As you can see most of this post is a technique for growing your own sunflower seed sprouts.  These sprouts usually retail for about $4-5 a package and you can make a tray for next to nothing with a little planning.  They take about 6 - 10 days to have an edible product that will last another week in the tray and about that long if you cut the last ones in the tray and refrigerate them in a wet paper towel in a plastic bag.  Any questions just ask and I will try to help with a response.
Happy Gardening

Monday, March 18, 2013

So Where Is Spring - Really!?

Crocus March 7 2013.

Cold frames planted last fall. They replaced the hoop house.

My future Aspen planting board.

The newest cold frame (season extender).

Google - Cold Frame Manual and go to the Door County site.  (second)

Planting board in use for lettuce.

The best compost bin I have ever had.  Make some now.

Last March 7th in 2012 - NO SNOW!

With some rain recently I thought we were on our way to getting rid of the snow but not so; and there is even some hint of some more today.  Well, even with that threat, it's time to get some building done.  With planting soon to be on every one's agenda now would be a good time to build a cold frame or two and make a new planting board along with maybe some more parts for the compost bin.  I did recently make a presentation at the Kress Family Library in DePere and built a new cold frame to demo for that event.  I also gave away a new planting board as a door prize - the first time I did that - what fun!  When I bought the board for making the gift planting board, I found two pieces of lumber that tempted me for a new board of my own - a fantastic piece of Black Walnut and a beautiful clear piece of Aspen - based on the price I got the Aspen but I am still tempted by that Black Walnut board - six feet of gorgeous wood that would make a great heirloom for someone.
All the plans for these projects are on former blog posts and I would refer you to them instead of repeating them again.  I myself go back to them too - the Cold Frame plans are April 9th of 2009 and the Planting Board is April 26th of 2009 also.  The Compost Bin Board Cut-outs are on April 8th 2012.  So April looks to be traditionally  a building month - but with all this snow still around I think this would be a good project time and then if April allows one can get to other garden projects with these done already. 
I also am working on showing you a series of sprouting photos as we are so hungry for greens that I started a tray of sunflower sprouts.   I want to share that process because sunflowers are one of the larger sprouts that take a little different technique than one uses for alfalfa or mung beans.  We really like sunflower sprouts on salads, in eggs, and on sandwiches and a tray that you start at home would retail for almost $30 if you bought them at the produce market.
I have to get the greenhouse plastic insulation in place before I start up the heat and that job is on the work list for getting done just as soon as I see the accountant and get the taxes done - always a March job (both of them).
We have had crocus in the yard for most of the last few snows and I am hoping for February Gold daffodils soon. We had them last year by this time.  The apple trees will need their spring pruning but I am still looking for a warm day to get that job done and Mother Nature has not helped me there...
Happy Gardening.