This is my very first post so firstly thank you for popping in, let's see if I can keep y'alls attention...shall we?
For starters, this is not going to be some "picture perfect" how to blog. If you join me each week you will get to follow along for the good, bad and horrendous. But hopefully all of these words that were typed up by yours truly in a small coffee shop will help some of you learn how to avoid the mistakes I've made over the years or help set a vague guideline to set up your farm.
Enough introductory nonsense. Its February. NOT SPRING, I know... but I mean that title is catchy. Well trust and believe I am out here being a popsicle but even though the weather isn't conducive to all of us green thumbs (and soon to be green thumbs) that doesn't mean we have nothing to do, precisely the opposite to be honest with y'all. For weeks now I have been flipping through all of the seed catalogs driving myself nuts with all of the endless options. After hours of scanning dreaming of the 'what ifs' even I become incredibly overwhelmed with the process.
Before I make you overthink and panic lets crack into how I figure out what to buy for my upcoming spring season.
*Truly with a pen and notepad anything is possible, even if it feels like a lot I can assure you that you'll get it done with the right amount of ambition*
Figure out your growing space.
This should ALWAYS be step one....I say this aggressively out of love, not anger. I have made this mistake more times than I can count. Its the most important step in my opinion. If you don't know what you're working with how can you create a realistic goal for yourself? Don't let goals become dreams due to improper planning. Figure out the soil type, the square footage, sunlight and your zone.
What are these things?
Soil type: if you have very sandy soil or in comparison very clay like soil you will have to be conscious of the crops that you are choosing for your field
Planning on site always helps to get the best visual
Square footage: I mean if you start 200 tomato seeds be aware of how much space they truly need. You could either end up with not enough space or vice versa not have utilized the full area.
Sunlight: Do you have sun all day? Knowing how many hours of true light you have is crucial in decided which crops to go with
ZONES: Referring to a zone map will help you in a huge way. Being that I am in Connecticut I am zone 5, some crops can be impossible for me to produce or I need to have more equipment such as hoop houses or some type of coverage. Knowing your zone will help you choose seed that you will be guaranteed to succeed with.
Decide what you truly would like to grow.
I usually grow a wide variety of newer seedlings. I like taking the risk on new products and am willing to take the hit if the crop fails or produces less. But keep in mind there are always the tried and trues out there that are verified money makers or heirloom varieties if you want to go real old school.
Speciality ordered Hogheart Tomatoes
Find your best price.
Farming starts with saving money on the little things, a few dollars or even cents here and there in the beginning will matter as you move forward throughout the season. Be sure to look a the quantity of seed per packet...not just the dollar amount of the packet. Also see if you can use a seed company you can get free shipping with. Shipping costs can really impact the start up costs of your season.
COMMIT!! Get the seeds and be sure that you look start to create your seeding schedule.
Nasturtium seedling 10 days post seeding
Hopefully that gave some type of building blocks to help get you on your way to starting 2019 off right! If you haven't even started thinking of seeds you still have time. I generally just try to order sooner than later because I don't want those speciality varieties to be out of stock. There is nothing worse than being hyped to buy a specific type of aster and not being able to get ahold of it.
Beware: Some seeds are on backorder so they may not arrive with the rest of your order which may be easy to overlook and then the small individual packet may get lost in the mix of your other mail. Or even worse it will show up too late for you to start the seed in time for the growing season, so be leery and read the fine print!
If this post stirred up a lot of questions feel free to contact me and i can help to the best of my ability! Us gardeners have to stick together! :)