Welcome to my zone 9a habitat garden near Houston, Texas.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Veggie dreams

What a gorgeous day this has been here in my little corner of the world. I hope yours has been equally sun-filled and beautiful and that you were able to get outside and play in it for at least part of the day.

Here at the end of February, while I'm still digging, dividing and moving perennials and some shrubs around to various parts of my garden, it is time for me to start thinking seriously about my spring vegetable garden. While all those other parts of the garden have claimed my attention, the fall/winter veggies have been coming to the end of their run, except for the beets and carrots that still have a way to go, and now it's time for the changing of the seasons.

A month ago, I planted some 'Russian Banana' (Note: Corrected from 'Yukon Gold'.) fingerling potatoes, but, as luck would have it, they have never come up. I'm really afraid they have rotted in the ground. We had quite a lot of rain just after I planted them.

I also purchased and planted a few extra asparagus crowns, but other than those small efforts, I haven't planted any other vegetables yet.

I know that some in the area start their spring veggie gardens in February, but that is just a little too soon for me. I don't really want to have to protect the tender plants from frost, so it's better for me to be patient and wait until the calendar turns over one more time. Meantime, there's a lot to do to get ready.

My vegetable beds are actually in much better shape than they have been in some years, so there's not a lot of cleaning up to do - just pull a few weeds and rake the soil, or in some cases turn the soil. Add a little compost or well-rotted manure and work it in and I'm all set. All I need is seeds or plants. And just a smidge warmer weather.

I've got some of the seeds already. I have some from last year and I ordered a few from Seeds of Change recently and they came this week - sweet corn, carrots, cucumbers, haricot vert bush beans and sunflowers. Can't have a garden without sunflowers

I usually have pretty good luck with spring and summer vegetables. Indeed, the garden generally produces more than my family can possibly use of tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, green beans, squash and corn.

These few weeks before the beginning of the new gardening season are like spring training in baseball when every team is a winner and anything is possible. Every pitcher is a potential 20-game winner; every team can be a World Series champion. It's the same for gardeners - anything is possible.

In my mind's eye, I see a garden of perfection, a trophy-worthy garden. Luscious plants with shiny tempting fruit and no yellow leaves or insect or disease damage. And no weeds.

Ah, I can dream. On a day like this today, anything is possible.

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