The Winter Session of our veggie start CSA is now open for memberships. Purchase one today HERE.
Hardneck vs. Softneck: Softneck garlic is the type you usually find in the grocery store- soft, braidable stems, stores well, and has a mild flavor. Hardneck garlic closer to wild garlic; tough stem, with a strong complex flavor. It doesn’t store as long as softneck, but it has beautifully large and pungent cloves.
Winter 2013 CSPS Garlic Varieties: Thanks to Kirsop Farm for once again providing their beautiful garlic varieties!
Korean: Hardneck, red striped cloves, extremely pungent flavor
Silverskin: Softneck, excellent for braiding and storing, mild flavor
German: Hardneck, large cloves-excellent for roasting, strong flavor, very hardy
Video: How to plant and grow garlic
Video: How to build a cold frame
1. Choose an overcast day, otherwise wait till late afternoon to plant.
2. Lightly water your seedlings and the area
3. Use a hand trowel to move aside enough soil to fit your seedling.
4. Carefully remove your seedling from its container by holding container sideways and gently massaging the bottom and side of the
compartment. Very gently pull seedling out while massaging. Dig a
small hole at the appropriate spacing (see newsletter for more info)
5. Pop seedling into the hole so it is buried to about the same level it
was in the pot. Gently pat down
6. Water right away and daily until seedling looks robust.
Tip: fertilize with liquid seaweed at planting to minimize shock.
Brassicas: Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage, Kale, Brussels Sprouts
Alliums: Onions, Spring Onions, Garlic, Leeks, Shallots
Leafy Greens: Lettuce, Spinach, Celery, Mustard, Rocket, Silver Beet
Peas and Beans: Broad Beans, Runner Beans, Peas
Root Veggies: Beetroot, carrots, parsnips, radishes, salsify, turnips, swedes
Tips for Growing Tomatoes and Peppers in the Northwest
How to grow superb Summer Squash
Tips for growing Winter Squash
Tips for Growing Cucumbers in the Northwest
Harvest to Table: A great searchable guide for planting, harvesting, and storing vegetables
Ed Hume’s Monthly “What to do in the garden” –Calendar. Also available in booklet form at local nurseries
The Garden Hotline. Master Gardeners Staff the hotline. They can answer just about any garden question you may have as things come up. (206) 633-0224
Growing More with the Space you Have- a video from Territorial Seeds
How to make a hoop house for cheap
Growing Tomatoes in the NW
Planting Veggies early with the Wall o’Water season extender
Garden Planning Options
- If you have plenty of space, consider traditional “row-based” gardening.
Steve Solomon, founder of Territorial Seed Company and author of Gardening West of the Cascades, is the Northwest’s best-known advocate of this approach (despite his move to Tasmania). He has determined that the row approach, which allow more space for the plants, not only requires fewer inputs (fertilizer, water) and less labor, but yields bigger, better-tasting veggies to boot. This model is detailed in his recent book, Gardening When it Counts: Growing Food in Hard Times. We encourage you to look for it at your local, independently-owned bookstore if you are interested in growing according to those principles.
- If don’t have space to spare, consider biointensive gardening.
Biointensive gardening is the marriage of biodynamic and French Intensive principles. John Jeavons is biointensive’s primary advocate, as you might guess by the title of his best-known book How to Grow More Vegetables Than You Ever Thought Possible on Less Land Than You Can Imagine. This technique requires more inputs and more labor, but boasts greater yields than traditional row-style garden planning. If you are short on soil square-footage, Jeavons will help you make the most of it. Which brings me to our third option:
- If you don’t want to do all that math, square foot gardening is for you.
Both row-based and biointensive gardening require calculations from you. It takes time to determine how many plants or seeds in how much space, not to mention graph paper and pencils. If you want to skip that step, square foot gardening is a foolproof way to do it. Mel Bartholomew is the originator of this system; his most recent book, All New Square Foot Gardening, gives all the details. Put simply: you install a square-foot grid (twine and push pins are sufficient) over your raised bed and then plant either one, four, nine or sixteen seeds or starts per square foot, depending on the crop. Easy peasy.
No matter the method by which you choose to plan your garden, be sure and follow best practices for best results:
Rotate crop families. This means know your plant families (see link below) and don’t plant crops of the the same family in the same place more than once every year (every two years is better if you can swing it).
Use companion planting to your advantage. Some plants contribute to each other’s growth; others impede. It’s easy to take advantage of the benefits of companion planting. Why not plant onions and broccoli together instead of onions and peas? Know your companion plants (see link below) and help your plants help each other!
Free Garden Planning Tools
http://gardenplanner.territorialseed.com/ (not free but quite an excellent resource)
Northwest Pest Guide
Seed Sources (Our Favorites)
1. Growing Vegetables West of the Cascades by Steve Solomon—Information about NW soils, planting schedules, growing specific crops, and a general all around solid book.
2. The Maritime Northwest Garden Guide
a. Seattle Tilth——www.seattletilth.org (Planting Calendar)
3. Growing More Fruits and Vegetables than you ever thought possibl by John Jeavons
4. Square Foot Gardening by Mel Bartholomew http://www.amazon.com/Square-Foot-Gardening-Mel-Bartholomew/dp/0878573410
5. The Complete Book of Edible Landscaping: Home Landscaping with Food-Bearing Plants and Resource-Saving Techniques By Rosalind Creasy
8. The Future is Abundant- a book of all sorts of edible/”permaculture” projects published by Washington Tilth, 1982
- Soil Basics from WSU extension. Includes links to their free soil test service. You get 5/year for free so I’m told.
- http://www.umass.edu/soiltest/ is another well known library.
- How to build soil http://www.gardeners.com/
- Planting Calender NWHow to build a hoop house to extend your growing season. Note: you can grow leafy greens under in winter and on in the middle of the summer.
- Crop Rotation (see attachement too). Basically, be sure to change it up!