Friday, April 22, 2011

The Great Seedling Count

Hi, I know I haven't been around much this month- busy busy around here!!!  I've been having lots of fun planting seeds and here is what I have coming up so far at my house:
100ish Tomatoes
150ish Eggplant (What was I thinking???)
100ish Peppers (hot and milds but no bells yet- I KNOW I have those seeds somewhere!!)
30ish Red Cabbage
3 Comfrey
40ish Jerusaleum Artichoke (they are getting over 3' tall)
12ish Spinach

I have a great friend who has started Brussell Sprouts, Cabbages- red, green and cone, Tomatoes and lots of other goodies for me. 

Seeded 9 Yellow Nasturtiums today (pretty and edible)
1 comfrey growing outside under glass cloche- didn't dare put them all outside in case they all died
The Jerusaleum Artichokes I had put outside never came up- Hoping they will but worried they rotted (the ground is very wet).
65 of the peppers that growing are Jalapeno's.  I'll use some for us but most will be dried for the chickens- They love them!!!

Monday, April 4, 2011

Beets- Beet Pulp- Growing Beets

There is a growing trend of buying beet pulp to feed to livestock.  I don't really understand this trend.  Beets are extremely easy to grow either inside or outside.  They are truly almost bombproof, do well in partial sun/shade. 

Beets do well in a sunny window inside the home.  I get a cardboard box- the cases that Powerade/soups come on work really well- put the box in a trashbag (the 13 gallon inside bags work well) then toss a whole bunch of potting soil (about a gallon) onto the bag/cardboard flat.  Plant seeds, water, put in a sunny window and wait.  In about a month you will be able to start harvesting your beets for either yourself or your animals.  I prefer this method over rubbermaid containers due to the flats being fairly shallow and wide/long.  The plastic containers would work well too.  Just make sure to water sparingly. 

Even easier would be to plant a raised bed/container right next to your animals pen.  Then practice the pull and place method- pull up a plant or two and place into your animals cage/pen.   This is what I do with Mangel beets.  Mangel beets can be grown inside, but they get so large that I prefer to grow them outside.  They should be planted in an enclosure as deer/rabbits/etc LOVE mangels, at least they do mine.  Don't feed mangels till after they've gone through a good frost as it makes them sweeter. 

I feed 1 reg beet per rabbit per day or 1 mangel beet (after frosts) per communal pen per day.  Baby bunnies don't get beets till they are at least a month old, and even then I don't add the popples to the rations list.  So they will only get one or two bites of beet per day- not enough to upset their tummies.

Carrot Experiment- A Success!!!

I had some carrots in storage that had started growing so I potted them up in January (I had the itch- baddddd). They are doing great and now a couple have flower buds on them!!! Once they begin flowering they'll go outside during the day so the pollinators can get to them. I think I'll have seeds in a few months- which will give me plenty of time to grow carrots from their seed this year.

So, although carrots are biannuals, you can get seed and grow them yearly.
Oh, and they make really pretty houseplants in a southfacing window.  Easily as pretty as ferns, if not prettier.