Saturday, January 16, 2010

Preparing the Garden Bed

I got my onion seeds in the mail today along with a free packet of bell pepper seeds. I'm nervous starting onions from actual seeds vs using seed onions that have already been started. When I swung by the feed store to get our two-week supply of dog food and some corn meal gluten for the sand burrs, the guy working told me that they just got onions in, so I picked up a bunch of 60 Texas Sweet for $1.60. I'm going to prepare the bed to plant the Texas Sweet this month, then start the Red Creole onions indoors to plant at the end of March.

The Red Creole seeds can germinate in cool weather; however, the bell pepper seeds need warmer temps. I am trying to do this frugally, so I want to try to germinate them without buying a warming pad. Our oven is gas with a pilot lite, so it is always warm, which makes me think maybe I can store them in there and leave myself a note on the oven handle that they are there...

As for starting the bed, I've been trying to figure out the easiest way to do it without hurting myself. I pull muscles easily and have had problems with my hips since I was a kid, so tonight in googling tips for preparing the bed, it looks like stripping the sod with a spade is going to be the easiest. After mowing or weed-eating down the grass and weeds, the area needs to be watered (which it is raining, so the day after it stops should make it easy), then use the spade to precut the area into smaller squares, slide the spade under and flip the sod up. I'm sure it's easier said than done, but this seems like it will be MUCH easier than hand tilling.

After removing the sod, the area will be filled with some compost and manure, then I can plant the Texas Sweet.

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