We are the WORST gardeners ever. Let’s just put that right out there. We forget to water our plants, weeds overtake our veggie gardens, and plants just die. Even our lawn struggles with us around, but that’s another post for another day. Regardless, we plant a veggie garden every year and every year we have one serious bounty. Some years some things work better than others but overall we’ve been very happy with our backyard, veggie land. So last week, when the temps reached record highs here in Maine (seriously…we blew away the old records with a few 85 degree days…it’s usually about 40-50 degrees in March if we’re lucky), we decided it was high time we started to figure out our garden. So off to Lowes we went to pick up our seeds and what did we find (and obviously come home with) a mini greenhouse.
You see, here in Maine we must start many of our seeds, such as tomatoes, early since our growing season is so short. The last couple of years, when Colby and I have started our garden early, the planters have completely taken over our home. We pile the seedling trays on shelves, tables, countertops, and any surface that we can find. And then, on nice days we tend to move all those planters outside. It’s a pain. Trust me. And our solution was the greenhouse, since we could just fill it up with our seedlings keeping our kitchen table free for more important activities…like eating. And we could easily roll the thing out to the deck on nice days to catch some sun. And at a $40 price tag, we were sold. We had actually been thinking of DIYing something like this but our materials cost alone would be more than this greenhouse. So home it came…in pieces.
But I am a master at some-assembly-required and had the greenhouse together in 8 minutes flat. I didn’t even have to read the directions it was so easy. Everything just snapped right together.
And then to the fun part, starting our seeds. Since it was 82 degrees outside one evening, I took the seed planting party outside, in a skirt and flip flops. I think I got a sunburn in Maine…in March…strange. My supplies included seeds, fiber pots, and some plastic trays to hold the pots and keep the water and dirt from getting all over our house. The fiber pots are really cool. They’re biodegradable and only cost us $4 for each set. What’s neat is that you can plant the pot right into the ground with the seedling when it’s time to transplant.
Oh yeah, and then there’s dirt. We can’t forget the dirt. We’re trying out a new kind of dirt this time around. Since we have problems with over AND under watering, we picked up a bag of moisture control potting soil. We’ll see how this goes!
Starting seeds is super easy. You just fill the little pots with the potting soil, add your seeds (make sure to read the directions on your seed packets as to how many seeds you should plant in each pot), and cover with a thin, less than 1″ cover of dirt.
Once we had planted all of our seeds, we gave the pots a quick drink of water, then zipped up the greenhouse.
Only a couple hours later, the greenhouse was all kinds of steamed up.
Which was a good thing because we typically keep our house temperature set on the cooler side. What can I say. I’m cheap and heating season in Maine is long and oil is expensive! While I was at it, potting away, I transplanted some of our houseplants into some bigger pots and also started the kitchen window sill herb garden.
One note, more like lesson learned for Colby and I, of starting seeds early is that you don’t have to start EVERYTHING inside. Most plants you can start right in the ground. We learned that the hard way last year when we were starting plants like green beans and lettuce, which both grow like weeds. The plants were HUGE by the time we were ready to plant outside. This year, we opted only to start our tomato plants, sweet peppers, and hot peppers. But word to the wise, because we weren’t smart enough to do this during our first two years of veggie gardening, read your seed packets. There’s alot of good info on there about when to plant and how to plant. It helps. So this year we’re totally playing by the gardening rules. Who knows how it will go but you know we’ll keep you posted.
Pssst…So this goes out to all my gardening readers out there. Do you have any tips or tricks to gardening? We could use all the help we can get!