05 March 2010

seed shopping

Spring is quickly approaching for us here in the NW. We have a chance of snow early next week (I'm crossing my fingers!), but after that, winter will be done. To prepare, I went seed shopping.

I usually plant fun things for the kids. I wasn't too impressed with our purple pole beans last year--harvesting was difficult because it was hard to find all the beans under the tremendous foliage, and the flavor was nothing spectacular. I was going to give up on fancy-colored produce, until I saw the Carnival carrots. Those will be fun!

After last year, we're hooked on sugar snap peas and cukes. Last year we grew Armenian cucumbers, which I loved. But this year, H has requested "regular cucumbers," meaning cukes with a hard green skin like we buy in the stores. I found the Spacemaster. The package claims it won't take over the garden...well...I'll be the judge of that. (And I'll let you know later this summer.)

Nasturtiums are also becoming a garden staple. The kids love the idea of edible flowers. Last year, I attempted to train a trailing nasturtium up a cone-shaped trellis, but the stems kept trying to grow downward. This year, I'm going to plant them into some hanging baskets and keep them by the front door. We may even get some bonus hummingbirds!

Otherwise, the garlic is already coming up. It was planted last fall. And I only grow tomatoes from starts, so that purchase will have to wait another month or two. I must have tomatoes in the garden. Small ones for the kids, and large beefsteaks for sandwiches, barbecued burgers, and bruschetta. We've already got the perennial herbs greening up, so I'll buy some Globe basil*, and maybe some parsley. Hubs wants to try asparagus, but I need to do some more research first.

*Globe basil is amazing. It grows in this nice, compact mound. It has nothing but small, tender leaves, and it's ever so slightly more pungent than basic large leaf basil. Plus, the bugs don't eat the leaves. I had Globe and large leaf in the garden last year, and Globe won hands down.

What are you planning for your garden this year?