Sunday, August 12, 2007

Planting Out Leafy Greens.

Yesterday I started to plant out the seeds for the leafy greens. I only got as far as the Pak Choy, spring onions and loose red lettuce seeds. Then I ran out of seeds twisted which was bad planning on my side. I have always checked to make sure I have enough seeds leading up to planting day and this time I slipped up.

So this morning Pat & I went for our daily walk and I bought some of the seeds in the photo below.

I love this variety of lettuces as they come in two colours and are able to be left in the ground and harvested as needed. I tend to not grow the hearting lettuces as I find in the summer months, they can boil in a heat wave.

Did you know a bird will peck at green lettuce in your garden before a red leaf lettuce?

The mushroom farm was a complete flop this year. My fault as I didn't keep it damp enough and forgot about it when we came back from our visit to Whyalla in June. So I kept it for this very reason. Pat was kind enough to turn the mushroom compost and soil for me, while I took photos and collected everything I wanted to plant out the seeds.

All set to go; worm castings, name tags in place, hand claw fork and soil ready for planting in. mrgreen

The worm castings go in first as a power boost for the seeds/seedlings as they grow. Then the seeds sprinkled fairly thickly and some soil over the top. Pat it down with my hand, so there are no air pockets to let the seeds dry out. Then a gentle water with the watering can.

I usually grow my lettuces in seedling punnets and plant out when big enough. But having the bird netting is allowing me the chance to try growing them this way.

Now this planting once again is by moon phases and there is another chance to sow leafy green this month. If you go to Cosmic Gardener's site she can explain it so much better than me. wink

Now Lucy C had a couple of questions and I'll try and answer them for her. But please remember this is my opinion and what I find that works for me here in my backyard.

What are you planting?

I planted out Red & Green Coral lettuces. This are great for non stop picking. I also will plant some other lettuce seeds later on this month that I will harvest as a whole lettuce. Going to try the Butter lettuce variety. This is another loose head, light green variety with soft round leaves with a buttery flavour. That way while I have some growing I am also picking for our table.

Also some Pak Choy (for the rabbits) and the straight leaf spring onions from my own seed saving.

What are the requirements for each type you plant?

A good area (can be a bit on the shady side) with well drained soil. For the lettuces I feed them once up a weak worm wee and seasol for their root system, once a fortnight. Lettuces are mostly water and so if not kept well watered... they can become bitter and bolt to seed. Same with the Pak Choy.

Spring onions I just water and let them do their own thing. Depending how many I have, I transplant them out in little bunches of six seedlings per spot or in single spots.

Do you plant them at staggered intervals for ongoing picking?

I do with the lettuces I pick as a whole plants such as cos, red & green mignonette. But the looses leaf that can be harvested from and left in the ground like the endive and the red & green coral lettuces I planted this weekend. I will only sow once until this plants look towards going to seeds....then I will resow those varieties of seeds.

Spring onions I usually plant another crop when the supply in the garden is getting low. That way I always have them in the garden. When I get low on seeds I let a couple of plants go to seed.

Hope this has answered your questions Lucy biggrin if not let me know.

Tomorrow I am sowing tomatoes and eggplants.

Until next time.... hoo roo

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Lucy C said...

Thanks heaps Lucky.
Will put my thinking cap on and get organised.

Lucky-1 said...

You are most welcome:D

I look forward to reading about it on your blog:)