The Garden In March (2013)

I haven’t had much time to write lately. Planting season has begun! We still have a ton of work to do in the garden, but so far I have four 17’x4′ raised beds planted. I’m loosely using the square foot gardening method.

Here are my onions. A dear friend blessed me with her leftover onion sets, which were more than enough to fill my raised bed. Half are white onions, half are yellow. Onion sets are easy to plant (so much easier than tiny onion plants raised from seed). You just push them into the soil enough to get them just below or right at the soil line, and keep watered. Don’t bother covering them back over with dirt. I planted 16 onions per square foot.

cabbage seedlings in raised bed

Here’s my cabbage bed. I planted one plant per square foot. I ended up having to plant a flat (24 ct) of cabbage seedlings from a local nursery since I didn’t have enough homegrown plants. My mother-in-law blessed us with these. I’d thank her publicly, but she insists that we musn’t ever thank somebody for a plant or it’ll die, so I thank her for thinking of us instead.

There are several different varieties in there. My red cabbage grown from seed did not do well at all. I think there were two or three that made it to transplanting. Hopefully I’ll be able to fend off the cabbage moths, and keep the worms to a minimum this year.

broccoli seedlings in a raised bed

This is my broccoli bed. I had to get nursery plants because I managed to kill every single one of my beautiful broccoli seedlings. I’d watered them one evening, and left them outside to continue hardening off. Well, the temperature dipped below freezing overnight, and since the soil was wet, it froze, which in turn froze the roots of my plants. By the next morning, all of them were shriveled up and limp. I hoped they might rebound, but they all turned brown and dried up. Note to self- don’t water potted seedlings before a cold night. Again, I planted one per square foot.

Peas and carrots raised bed

In this bed I’ve planted peas and carrots. On the right side of the trellis I planted pea seeds- sugar snap, purple podded, and Lincoln peas. My mother-in-law gave me some pea plants, so I stuck them in the bed as well.

I also sprinkled lots of different carrot seeds in the bed. I didn’t even bother spacing them, I just broadcast them as evenly as possible in their different sections. I’ll thin them as they grow. I planted: Purple carrots, Little Finger, Atomic Red, and Tendersweet. I also scattered Parsnip seeds on the far end of the bed.

Everything is pretty much still germinating in the pea and carrot bed.

seedlings under lights

Inside the house I still have three grow lights packed with little seedlings growing steadily. Mostly warm weather plants, such as tomatoes, peppers, and eggplant. Plus the celery I’m still hardening off, and a few other different things. Lots going on!!

That’s what the garden looks like so far. Have you been able to plant anything yet?

24 thoughts on “The Garden In March (2013)”

  1. Hi Kendra, this looks great !! My dining room has turned into our seedling nursery. Though we have transplanted now several times and some of our plants are now big enough to go in the ground its still too cold to plant here in Michigan, in fact we had a frost warning just the other night. We can’t wait to get planting though and since I find so much useful info on your blog I wanted to share something with you that may be helpful. I found this neat chicken run for gardens and thought this may be a solution for you…

  2. I’m sooo jealous- we’re still getting snow! Have potatoes and onions ready to plant,but snow predicted for this weekend and below normal temps until at least 1st week of April.

  3. I’m so jealous! Up here in the north, we are just starting most of our seedlings! It will be awhile before much of anything can go outside. But the sun has been shining just enough to get that gardening itch….it’s so hard to wait until May!!!!

  4. I live on the California coast, where the weather is always perfect. I used to live in Pittsburgh, so I can sympathize with that cold weather. Brrrr!!!

  5. Yes, I am planting heirloom tomatoes. I have a grow tray, similar to the one above, and my tomatoes sprouted yesterday! I already have 68 little babies!!! I also started some about a month ago. I transplanted them, but they’re a little in shock. I’m learning the ropes, right now. It’s so exciting, though. And, I’m growing raspberries, hawaiian ginger, lavender, and grapefruit. Fun! Fun! Fun!!!

  6. We are still dealing with cold weather up here in NE Ohio. We had freezing rain. I have a window to build a cold frame out of this weekend (hopefully) so that I can start spinach and peas. Other than that, we’ve still got about another month before I can start planting.
    This post has made me jealous! 😉

  7. Hi Kendra, WOW, your garden looks wonderful! What state do you live in? Here in Maine, we are several weeks away from planting. How many raised beds do you have, and how big are they? I am 58 years old, and wish I had the wisdom you have, back when I was your age! I would LOVE to go back and start over! OH the things I would do differently!

  8. Kendra
    Last year I dusted my broccoli and cauliflower with diatomaceaous earth and it took care of the cabbage worms. This was the first year I managed to grow them without liquid 7. I dusted all my other plants too. Had very few tomato horn worms. There was one beetle on my mustard and chard that it didn’t get rid of. We dust the animals (carefully so no one inhales it) with it also to fight mites, ticks, & fleas. LOVE it! So simple to use. Not too expensive. Organic.
    Just have to be careful not to inhale it or get it in your eyes. If you get in on your skin it is a little irritating, but it is nothing serious. I just make sure I’m upwind.

  9. I also planted parsnips…then read the directions that said they needed to be harvested after one or two freezes. It said the freeze would develop the flavor. Darn…surely I had not planted at the wrong time?! Not ME, a long time gardener??!! (gasp!)

    So I disturbed the soil so that hopefully the parsnips would not germinate, then I planted broccoli instead. Finally, I looked at the planting guide for my zone, and sure enough, parsnips are to be planted in the fall in my area. What a waste of seed!

    Otherwise, everything is coming up just dandy…oh, except we are due for snow in 4 days so I’ll be out hastily covering up the newly emerging tender plants. Hurry spring!

  10. Kendra I really like your raised beds!! Today I planted the potato’s still have the onion set to do this afternoon. I have started all my tomato’s and peppers in 12 milk jugs, all have been moved to smaller pots. Now they spent the day in the greenhouse and come back inside every evening, no heat in the small greenhouse. I’m thinking of putting my Bk-Choi in the lasagna bed, it should survive even if we have one more frost.
    Ellen from Georgia

  11. Hahahaha! I guess I goofed up. It says it is awaiting moderation so I kept making it smaller and now it has all three. Not sure what is going on. My main question is when you refer to “hardening off” what do you mean? Thanks! Your plots look great, by the way.

    • Lynne,

      Wow. Your adolescence sounds like a dream come true. Definitely what we’re striving for 🙂 As for “hardening off”, read my post Hardening Plants Before Transplanting. It’s all there 🙂 I hope you’re able to get into the dirt and grow those homegrown tomatoes again!!

  12. I grew up on a huge farm and we had a huge huge garden. My father was a farmer and we had cows for beef, milk cows, pigs, chickens and turkeys. We had apple and peach trees and blueberry and blackberry bushes. We had a strawberry patch so big we fed the whole county. If we didn’t grow it. we didn’t eat it. My mom would go to the store once a month for coffee, tea, sugar, cornmeal, etc. We even grew pumpkins and squash. We had 4 deep freezes and a root cellar. It was more than a full time job for three people in the summer. We froze, we canned, we made jam. We did it all. Oh I forgot the huge potato patch. Every kind of potato you could image. We even made our own butter and ice cream with peaches right off the tree. I miss it terribly. Now I live in the cement city of Chicago and I found this group I would love to get into. The land was donated by the city and whoever wants to help is welcome to share in the blessings. I am excited to taste a homegrown tomato. That is my goal. Just one question for you. When you talk bout “hardening off”, what do you mean?

  13. Nice, big beds! Your family will be eating well! We’ve planted peas, beans, beets, lettuce and carrots. We also have a couple of pineapples coming up! Enjoy your gardening!

  14. Hi!

    We planted our onions, peas and potatoes yesterday. As soon as we get our cabbage and bok choy fully hardened off we will be planting those as well. I’m so happy that gardening season has begun!!


  15. Kendra,

    Your garden beds look great. I am waiting on the sun to creep around to mine here in the City. Should be able to plant at the Country House in a couple of years, when I can spend more time there. It’s full sun, all the time!


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