Friday, April 1, 2016

Gardening: Seed Obsessions

Farm farm farm farm farm. Farm.

When it gets warm, all I can think of is what I'm going to plant.

I already blogged on the topic. But I can't plant any of it until next weekend, so my brain keeps spinning.

And I ordered seeds. Bad chicken! Not nearly as many as usual. But too many. So let's list 'em. Because.
  • Blue Lake bush beans. As discussed. From three different sources.
  • Jade bush beans, because I want to try one or two alternatives to Blue Lake.
  • Adriana lettuce, because it was wonderful last year, except I don't actually plan to plant lettuce this year, so what's my excuse?
  • Tohya soybeans, because if I like green soybeans at Japanese restaurants, why not grow them?
  • Sunshine winter squash. This one, according to Carol Deppe, works as both a summer squash and a winter squash. So when I inevitably fail to harvest the summers squashes, the plants won't be a waste.
  • Fortex pole beans. A pole bean that I hear about a lot.
  • Evergreen Hardy White bunching onions. Because I keep meaning to grow perennial bunching onions. These will probably go in in late summer or fall.
I also have many, many seeds from last year. 

As previously discussed, I really need to force myself to prioritize. Let's list those priorities. The idea is that the ground must be prepped for each priority before I can move on. Except I'm cheating on that with the potatoes; they're really a lower priority than the beans.

I feel the need to define my watering rules, before I start the list:
  • Strictly dryfarmed: They might get a little water to get them to the "first true leaves" stage or one good soaking after transplanting, but otherwise, that's it. If they die, they die.
  • Tentatively dryfarmed: I start out as firmly dryfarmed but if they start to fade I'll start watering, because I want the harvest more than I want the experiment.
  • Lightly irrigated: No more water than they seem to need to survive; if in doubt, err in the direction of watering too little.
  • Irrigated: Ideally just enough water; if in doubt, err in the direction of watering too much.
So, the priorities?
  • One 4X6 bed of Yukon Gold potatoes, tentatively dryfarmed.
  • Blue Lake bush beans, irrigated. All three different seed sources.
  • Howden and Orange Rave pumpkins, lightly irrigated.
  • Tomatoes from seedlings, strictly dryfarmed. Early Girl plus one or two plum tomato candidates.
  • One or two more beds of Yukon Gold potatoes, at least one of them strictly dryfarmed.
  • Armenian cucumbers, lightly irrigated.
  • Sunshine hybrid squash, tentatively dryfarmed.
  • A Bean Experiment, two or three beds' worth. Maybe just a different kind of bush bean. Maybe the soybeans. Maybe dryfarmed and sprawling pole beans. Maybe Supai Red with pole beans growing up it. I'm not sure. There are a zillion beans worth trying; I'll try one or two this year.
  • Howden Orange Rave pumpkins, strictly dryfarmed. Howden Orange Rave got near to producing a ripe pumpkin last year, on almost no irrigation. (I think it's the pumpkin in the photo.) Then we panicked on a hot day and started watering. This year I want to finish the experiment properly.  (Corrected--when I first posted, I misstated the pumpkin as Howden.)
  • Costata Romanesca squash, strictly dryfarmed. Really, as long as there's space for this, it's no labor; I intend to insert the seeds into the ground by the fence, let them fend for themselves, and see what happens.
  • Parch corn, if I didn't already plant Supai Red as part of the bean experiment. I'm looking at a shorter variety that apparently finishes sooner, which would be good, since ideally this dries down on the plant.
I could keep going, but it's very unlikely that I'll get this far. 

I'm also torn about my favorite Copra onions; I'm almost too late, or possibly already too late, to order plants, so I'll have to order them before I decide whether I'm going to plant them. If I added them, I'd probably insert them between the tomatoes and the second set of potatoes.

I think that's all.

Image: Mine.


  1. Yah! Armenian Cucs! And all the other good stuff too, but Cucs! Armenian! Yah!

  2. :) So, you're saying, maybe some cucumbers wouldn't be a waste of space?