Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Garden time

Spring has sprung here in New England. We've had almost a week of pleasant weather after two weeks of heavy rains.

At the beginning of March I started my seeds in my cellar. I have an old 25 gallon aquarium that's perfect for seed cultivation. I added a cheap heating pad from Walmart, several blocks of one inch thick Styrofoam and two 4' fluorescent light fixtures. I also put a remote thermometer inside next to the plants to make sure it's warm enough.

The foam blocks are stacked to hold the trays of seeding close to the lights and the heating pad is placed under the starter tray to keep the soil warm for fast germination. The lights just fit on top of the aquarium and are connected to a timer to turn them on and off on a 12 hour cycle. Most of the seeds are up and doing well.

I took time outside yesterday to survey my vegetable garden. The soil is now dry enough to work it a little. It was a real chore to turn sand into garden soil. I've turned truck loads of manure, compost and seaweed into the garden to help make the soil rich and productive. It's working. Last year even after six weeks of rain and colder than normal conditions everything grew as planned.

It's time expand the garden. I've decided to make the flat, rectangular area into four 16' long raised beds about 4' wide. I plan on adding two foot wide walkways between the beds. I bought the lumber yesterday. I'll post photos after I start the process.

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