16 March 2010

What's up with the Greenhouse?

Spinach, lettuce, cabbage, arugula (rockett) and radishes are all sprouted and growing in my shallow soil on the floor. Our year old asparagus seedlings have sent up the tiniest purple spears. Once the plants are well up I'll need to transfer them from their window boxes into roomier accommodations. The cabbages will eventually be transplanted out, probably some of the lettuces too, while the rest will provide some early salads. Outside we have some collards and rainbow chard coming on that overwintered despite my neglect.

The remodel is complete for now and it's time to get going on the next round of seedlings. A new "portable greenhouse" shelving unit inside the larger structure will provide (hopefully) the extra warmth needed to start our summer vegetables. The jury is still out on the survival of my habanero plants. My suspicion is that they'll be compost due to some very cold nights before I put the heat in three months ago. Eh! Next fall I'll do better by my peppers.

I'm debating on a plan to shade the structure this year so that we can grow things in there that need heat but not quite 110 degrees. Things like tomatoes, melons, and passion fruit. The debate is between planting a pair of hardy kiwi vines or a trio of climbing roses at the gable end to eventually shade the east and south glazing. See the problem? One produces lots of delicious fruit but I'd have to give most of it away or dry it because only I eat kiwis. The other would be gorgeous viewed from our deck, low maintenance, and romantic but purely aesthetic. I wonder if I could plant just one rose with the vines? It's not like I need a huge harvest, after all! Long term the structure will be replaced so that throws a wrench in the works too, so to speak.

Speaking of plantings at the base of this thing my attempt to slow the intrusion of water from the east side seems to be taking. Just enough water comes in to water the plants inside but there is no more flooding! The daylillys I planted in a berm along that wall survived the cold and snow and are starting to poke their first leaves through the soil. We also have daffodils and tulips coming up. It's going to be beautiful!

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