I sowed lettuce and radish outside, last weekend. Robb doesn't believe he likes radishes, but I intend to prove him wrong. Radishes, when young and fresh are delicious.
We've got all sorts of seeds germinating in the room that will some day be an office. Up until last week this was the Crap Dumping Room, but Robb's been trying to weed through all of our random junk, and get us better organized.
Our tomatillos have actually sprouted. There's a tiny, fuzzy, pale root, just poking out of the bottom of each seed. It's very hopeful.
Back when I spent my summers in Cooperstown, working for Glimmerglass Opera, I used to start plants in Maryland, and then drive to New York with a car full of baby plants. Eventually, the tomatillos all re-seeded, and Ellen and I started buying plants from her friends who owned a garden center. As a frustrated garden-less urbanite, I wasn't going to miss one second of growing time. Nevermind that I was only living at the farmhouse for eleven weeks every summer. I planted short season crops, and when I was gone, Ellen and dairy farmers got to eat my veggies. Ellen is a good friend and would usually find a way to bring me a big grocery bag of my tomatoes, first in Maryland, and later when we lived in Connecticut.
By the way, who was the nice person who left a package of garden seeds under our Christmas tree at our party? I know that Allie brought us seeds from her flowers, but who brought the vegetables with the completely bizarre slogan, "¡Está bien comer vegetales que no hablan!"
So what will I be growing? (And do I actually have room for all of it?)
Alyssum: Tiny Tim (supposedly a favorite of beneficial insects and honeybees)
Beans: Tendergreen Improved Bush
Beet: Gourmet Blend
Cucumber: Paris (for making tiny cornichon pickles), Marketmore
Leeks: American Flag
Lettuce: Gourmet Baby Greens
Mustard Greens: Ruby Streaks (We were seduced by the beauty of this plant)
Pepper: California Wonder
Poppy: California, Hungarian Blue Breadseed
Radish: French Breakfast
Tomatoes: Brandywine Red, Green Sausage, Sun Gold
Sunflowers: Sunzilla (to hide the World's Ugliest Fence)
Swiss Chard: Five Color Silverbeet
Zucchini: Black Beauty
Plus some other stuff that we mail ordered, like hops for making beer, and various California wildflowers.
Mostly, the seeds are heirloom varieties, because I'm so delighted by seeds that have been saved and grown for generations.
We're supposed to be having an arborist come out to remove a dying mulberry tree that shaded our entire back yard. But with two solid weeks of rain, his schedule is a big mess. I can't prepare my second vegetable bed until that tree is gone.
There's something important to me, about planting a garden. It's like an investment on the future, even if I won't be there to participate in that future.
I've put in a garden in every place that I've lived (any many where I've worked) where there was even a scrap of dirt. I usually planted tough perennials that would survive, long after I was gone. I can only imagine how big the trees that I planted in Charles Village are by now.