The seed tin of happiness
Like many gardeners, Easter is my starting gun for major gardening activities and also like many of them, I always feel a pang of guilt at starting seed sowing now. Everyone else seems to have lots of healthy seedlings and it's easy to be a little envious of their bounty. However, it's best if I ignore that and crack on now instead. I don't have a greenhouse and only a limited windowsill capacity so I've found a later start works better for me. That way everything should be at peak perfection for planting out in VP Gardens at the end of May.
Having culled all the old or unwanted packets of seeds, my seed tin really is full of happiness with the promise of colour and harvests to come. It's looking a little different in there this year as there are as many packets of flower seeds as well as my usual vegetables.
Some of these are earmarked for the newish border at the bottom of the garden. I'm being a little cautious with the revamp here because there's plenty of bramble sending out new shoots even though I dug them out pretty thoroughly. I want to make sure it's gone before I set out the permanent plants, therefore some direct sowing of colourful annuals is my answer for this year. I'm going to try some Nigella in the sunniest spot, not the usual Love-in-a-mist but Nigella sativa instead which produces the black seeds used in Indian cooking. NAH uses them when he cooks curry and they've been a gap in our store cupboard for a while. I'm also going to add some bronze fennel to the single terrace bed so I can top up its seed jar; I've missed this particular harvest from the allotment.
On the vegetable front the tomatoes are all blight resistant varieties this year - more on this in a future post. Surprisingly (to me) I'm growing spring onions for the first time. I do miss my allotment onion and shallots, but don't have the space for them here. However, I'm cooking a lot more stir fries in our more heart friendly diet these days and it'll be good to have a successional supply of spring onions to add to them. I'm also going to grow aubergines again despite them being a borderline success last year. Growing them outdoors is always an optimistic activity, so I'm looking at ways I can give them a little more protection.
Courgettes, squash and cucumbers have all grown well on my patio allotment previously and I'll sow these in a couple of weeks time. I've just sown the mangetout to scramble up behind them; I think of them as my 'two sisters' instead of the more familiar three sisters approach.
It's shaping up to be a grand year in the garden *crosses fingers*
What seeds have you sown this year? Are any of them for the first time?