Saturday, March 20, 2010

Oh beautiful seedlings!

Can you believe I already have multiple seedlings sprouting up? I'm sure most of you are laughing at me, but I really had no idea that 3 days after I planted that a few sprouts would have popped through! So exciting :)

It's been almost a week since I planted the seedlings and this is what I have!

About 1/3 of the seeds sprouting. I can't wait to put them in the ground or pots! I did buy a basil plant the other day because I needed some basil for a recipe and I could not bring myself to pay $3.50 for a few leaves when I could buy an entire plant for the same price. I cannot wait until my other herbs mature!

I've been reading as much as I can on small space gardening and we got our plot downtown to put more veggies. It's nice because the water is on a timer so we don't have to go every single day. There is a shared herb garden (which will be awesome until mine get mature), a shared salad garden and a children's pizza garden! I have absolutely no idea what we'll plant there, but it's in full sun, which is nice since the majority of our backyard is shaded by our huge pecan tree. We have such a limited space where the sun shines for about 6 hours/day, so we're going to try to be creative!

I'll share our successes and failures. I'm hoping for more successes!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

First seeds planted!

I told you I was excited! I've already planted a lot of my seeds.

I also got a few more varieties to plant now because about half from the Dinner Garden are fall veggies for this area. And because I wasn't prepared this year to plant vegetables, I actually had to go buy something to start my seeds in. But, I didn't get the ridiculously over-priced greenhouses for seed starting. I found some little pots that you can plant right with your seedlings and I got 50 for just under $2. Which is still too much, in my opinion. Next year I'll be prepared and will be saving my egg cartons!

Now, I have no idea if this will work. I know I'm extremely late for starting seeds indoors, but considering we will be moving in 2-3 weeks and it will be at least a week or two before we are somewhat settled with the unpacking, I figured by starting them indoors, it'll give us a good month or so head start than if we were just to sow the seeds directly in the ground. I guess we'll see soon enough, right? :)

My son got in on the action. Yes, we are inside. It was very chilly outside but I couldn't wait!

Here is a list of the seeds I started indoors.

Red Cabbage
Wando Peas
Onions (not sure what kind, but no matter because I love all onions!)
Swiss Chard
Arugula (afraid it may be too hot for it to grow by the time I get it in the ground, but I'll keep my fingers crossed!)
Daikon Radishes
Peas (not sure what kind, I'm assuming regular garden peas)

I'm super excited. I cannot WAIT to see the fresh sprouts of green pop through the soil. I can't wait to prepare our garden area in Savannah to transplant them. I'm excited to see our son pick his own fresh veggies to eat. I have a feeling we'll be giving a lot away as well because I'm optimistic and think I've already planted too much. :)

I know that this year is an experimental year for us, but I'm ok with that. We have to start somewhere, right? I'm kicking myself for not paying more attention when I was younger and we always had a huge garden. I wish now I would have had a greater appreciation at the time for it. But I guess I just took it for granted because I always had a huge garden growing up and just thought that's the way it was for everyone. It's not been until the past few years when my husband and I have become more aware of our nutrition (or lack of) and have been wanting to start our own garden. Well, now is the time. Why keep wishing for it? Just do it, right?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Free vegetable seeds

I'm going to plant a garden.

I'm very excited.

I'm especially excited now that I received these seeds in the mail today....for FREE!

I received them after writing to the Dinner Garden people about 2 weeks ago. I'd honestly forgotten all about it until I received my wonderful package today! The Dinner Garden is a fantastic organization that has an awesome mission:

The Dinner Garden provides seeds, gardening supplies, and gardening advice free of charge to all people in the United States of America. We assist those in need in establishing food security for their families. Our goal is for people to plant home, neighborhood, and container gardens so they can use the vegetables they grow for food and income.

They only began this program in 2009 and have already provided seeds for more than 40,000 families and 100 community gardens! How awesome is that?

This is what I received:

  • Fordhook Giant Swiss Chard
  • Arugula
  • Blue Curled Scotch Kale
  • Fenugreek
  • Mustard Greens
  • Onions
  • Snowball Cauliflower
  • Harris Early Model Parsnips
  • Wando Peas
  • Organic Bloomdale Spinach
  • Red Cabbage
  • Daikon Radish

How exciting are those names? I love them. I love the little packages and the little labels. I love that I got the variety that I did. I would have never been so courageous in a store to pick these out! I'm especially excited about the arugula. Giada always uses arugula and when I try to make her recipes I can never find good, fresh arugula. The fenugreek is a complete surprise. I know when I was concerned with my supply when I was exclusively nursing my son, fenugreek was an herb that came up again and again as a supplement to encourage breastmilk production. Not sure what I'll do with it now, but I'm going to grow it anyway!

So, where am I growing all of this? Those of you who have been to our house in Savannah know that we have a tiny yard. Our entire lot is only .13 of an acre. Yep, not even a quarter acre!

Well, I plan on trying a variety of things.

Things such as vertical gardening. This link has several gardens we'll try. The first picture is so beautiful that I must try it at least! What a great way to fill blank fence space! The gutter system is also a must for me. I'll probably do this to grow herbs.

We'll also do container gardening. I found this blog and tutorial on making your own self-watering container. I know we can get the 5-gallon buckets for free, so the cost should be pretty similar to the ones the guy builds in the video.

Another thing I'm super excited about is the possibility of having a plot in a community garden in downtown Savannah! I've heard about community gardens in other cities and decided to search for one in Savannah and found one! We've applied for a plot and hope to be lucky enough to be granted one!

Hopefully between my container gardening in our yard and our small plot (hopefully!) in the community garden, we'll be able to provide fresh, organic produce for our family to eat all summer and fall! We will also donate some of our excess to the local food bank as thanks to the Dinner Garden for supplying us with our starter set of seeds!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


I'm sorry I've been absent. The travel we did in February seemed to put us behind and I feel like we're not close to being caught up! Trying to coordinate our move is a bit challenging since we've got to get into our house to do a little painting and other things before moving all of our furniture in.

So, I'll probably be mostly gone over the next couple weeks or so, but once we're settled back in Savannah, I'll get back into it!

Oh, and I've lost 10 pounds in the past 6 weeks! :) It's all from just cleaning up my eating a little. I wasn't super strict with my diet, so I can imagine what weight I'll shed once I get into CrossFit and eat even better once moving home!