Caddyshack, anyone?

Of course I’m not going to blow up any squirrels with dynamite. I do, however, need to squirrel-proof my beds. I planted a lot of seeds on Saturday evening, and when I got up on Sunday the squirrels had already made a mess of everything. I had enough bird netting to cover one bed, and put down some lightweight fabric on the other one until I get more netting. I can’t wait to see where the seedlings pop up. I might need to start a “What the heck is this plant?” post soon so you can help me identify and relocate things back to their original spots. I love my squirrels, I really do. I was hoping that feeding them “the good stuff” would appeal to their good consciences and they’d leave my beds alone. I keep posing this question to them: “Don’t you respect me enough to stay on your own side of the yard and be content to eat the lovely gourmet meals I put out for you?” Something tells me they just don’t understand the concept of sharing space.

Assuming they managed to miss all of the seeds (highly unlikely), I will soon be seeing the following seedlings…..lettuce, carrots, spinach, scallions, leeks, snap peas. Varieties to follow.

The older plants under the lights are doing well, but I’m having problems with eggplant and tomato germination. I do have a few varieties that popped up, but even more that haven’t. I may have to do the paper towel technique because I think the problem has to do with the moisture levels in the seed tray. The first round of seeds that I started in the tray were great, but I also used the plastic cover to maintain moisture. Now, I have some small plants that are in the tray already, so I can’t cover it over. The cells dry out amazingly fast. Too fast for me to get a handle on them. I tried plastic wrap this time, but it wasn’t the same. I’ll give these seeds a few more days, but when the weekend comes I think I’m going to start over. Again. I really shouldn’t complain, I’ve had pretty good success so far for my first time. (I’ll add pictures later tonight….I’m slacking off at work and typing this up.)

The pepper seedlings are doing very well for the most part. And the broccoli and cauliflower plants look great too. I can’t wait to get them outside. If I can find time to start hardening them off this week I should be getting them in the garden this weekend.

Oh, I ordered a mix of storage onion plants from Dixondale Farms this week, too. I had started a few onions in the house, but I’ve come to realize that because of the height of the plants I can’t really effectively situate them under the lights without affecting the closeness to other plants. Dixondale has a great variety, and they ship small plants based on the frost dates for your zip code. I’m going to have a TON of them, since they send at least 5 dozen of each of the three varieties in the mix. I’ve read that people end up with closer to 100 plants a piece, though. So I’ll definitely be sharing with others! The great thing is the cost: $10.25 including shipping. I can definitely handle that, especially when it solves the space issue under the grow lights. I’ll still plant the ones I started inside, and sooner rather than later so I can make space. If they don’t survive it’s no big deal. There are PLENTY MORE coming!

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