Updated: Apr 9
We have decided to start a new blog in light of Covid-19. We hope that we can empower you to take control and start growing some of your own food. You may be new to gardening and not know where to begin. We have sifted through a lot of information to bring you what you need to succeed, just the basics. We will add a new post every week or two that will advise you about what actions you could be taking in the garden to have a successful harvest.
Today we are covering the basics of starting seeds, and planning your garden.
What to Plant
Starting with getting some of your seeds started indoor, here is an introduction to seed starting by the National Gardening Association.
Only a few things need to be started inside in March and early April. Things like tomatoes, peppers, eggplants are all warm-weather plants and need to be started early to be big enough to really take off when you plant them outside in May. They can be started inside now.
Be sure to use sterilized seed starter to avoid a situation called damping off, which is caused by a bacteria found in garden soils.
You can use old seed trays, just be sure to wash them with a weak bleach solution first. Alternatively, you can use egg cartons or other containers you have around. Just be sure to poke drainage holes if the conatiner isn't porous. Another option is to make pots with newspapers.
No Need To Take On Too Much.
If you are new to this just pick a few things. Leafy greens are nutrient-dense, easy to grow and don't take long to get a harvest. We suggest lettuce, chard, and beets as a good first attempt at gardening. You can add a few more veggies in every two weeks as you create more space to grow in.
When to Plant
Plenty of seeds can be directly put in the ground when the weather/temperature is appropriate. In the next week (March 24 - 31) the following seeds can be planted in your Cape Cod garden or in containers outdoors:
Here is a chart that shows when to plant different crops on Cape Cod:
Here are some things to consider as you start planning your garden:
When you are starting to think about where to locate your garden here is a good video to get you thinking about all the factors:
Raised Beds or Not
On Cape Cod, we generally have sandy soil. Some people will have pockets of clay as well. Building raised beds is one solution but sheet mulching is another approach.
Here is a video on the pros and cons of raised beds.
Here is a series of picture that demonstrate a technique we use a lot at Resilient Roots - sheet mulching! You can sheet mulch in your raised bed-ponder that!
So get your seeds and supplies ordered or pick them up at the garden centers (they are still open and some have curbside pickup) and start planning where you want to start your garden or place your containers and we will be back next week to enlighten you with some more gardening tips.