My Little Greenhouse – Learning
And so it begins….
It’s time for planting! Last weekend, I spent some time planting some (mostly) cool weather plants in the greenhouse. It caused me to reflect on what I’ve learned this year.
#1 I didn’t plant early enough last year. Since we put the greenhouse in in April, I didn’t get my cool weather plants planted early enough. Thus my peas never produced and my Nasturtiums were sickly from the heat in June, and my tomatoes ending producing LOADS of large pretty green tomatoes right when…yes, you guessed it..the first frost hit. The good news is, I learned what to cook with green tomatoes. The bad news is I missed out on juicy red beautiful tomatoes, which I totally prefer.
#2 – Having a thermometer is crucial. For cold days – it let me know when my lemon trees could get below 45º and on hot days, it let me know when to open the door and keep the plants from smothering. We ended up buying one that showed heat and humidity and it was fairly inexpensive.
#3 – The watering hose and wand being inside was invaluable. Had I had to lug a hose in and out each day, it would have been a pain. Just turning on the water and using the wand from inside was a breeze.
#4 – I planted WAY too many of each plant. I ended up with something like 12 or 15 of each herb. I mean, if I lived in the country that would be great, but I only had room for one or two thyme plants, etc. I had people come over and gifted them with the extras, which was actually pretty neat.
#5 – I asked my friends to save their larger pots. Once my seedlings grew large enough, I needed to transplant them into something bigger. With 1000+ plants, that could be costly to buy, so I asked my friends and family to save their pots instead of discarding them from the plants they bought at their local nurseries.
#6 – Perhaps the GREATEST challenge was the wind. Because we live in the tornado capital of the world, my poor husband was always worried about the panels blowing off or them getting hailed on. One evening, he blew up some pool rafts and laid them on top of the roof and wrapped the entire thing in a tarp. The panels are simply held on with some clips, so we are still researching this problem. Any ideas? I’d love to hear.
I have decided gardening is like many things in life. You try and sometimes you succeed. You try and sometimes you BOMB out. But one day, when you do succeed, it is so rewarding.
There is nothing like pushing a tiny seed into some fresh dirt and sometimes, mere days later, seeing that little sprout pop up.
Except maybe plucking that first juicy ripe tomato, taking it inside, rinsing it, slicing it, sprinkling a little salt on it, and then, with the juice running down your forearms to your elbows, tasting your first savory and sweet bite.
It’s what keeps me trying year after year.