Sanctuary Gardener Update ~ 3/10/14

I’m getting excited because I think the winter weather is finally past us. We’ll still have nights below 40 degrees for a bit, but nothing below freezing anymore, I don’t think. It’s been quite the winter for the Charleston, SC area, and I’m glad spring is arriving. My seedlings are coming up in the “grow room,” and there are new signs of spring in my garden.

IN THE GROW ROOM:

My peppers are taking an awful long time to germinate, especially my sweet bell peppers. Yesterday was two weeks since I planted my seeds, and the bell peppers are just now starting to come up. They sure do take their time sometimes!

Emerald Giant bell pepper seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Emerald Giant bell pepper seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

My chili peppers are up (except for the cayenne peppers – still waiting on those!).

Cubanelle (bottom) & jalapeno (top) seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Cubanelle (bottom) & jalapeno (top) seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

I planted Filius Blue peppers for the first time. So far, I have one out of six seeds that has germinated. The peppers will be blue, and the first leaves are a purplish blue color. Interesting.

Filius blue pepper seedling ~ 13 days post planting

Filius blue pepper seedling ~ 13 days post planting

My squash, melons, and tomatoes have secondary leaves. Time to start feeding them!

Zucchini seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Zucchini seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Cantaloupe (top left), white watermelon (bottom left), & honeydew melon (bottom right) seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Cantaloupe (top left), white watermelon (bottom left), & honeydew melon (bottom right) seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Amish paste tomato seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Amish paste tomato seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Pear tomato (top) & Listada de Gandia eggplant (bottom) seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

Pear tomato (top) & Listada de Gandia eggplant (bottom) seedlings ~ 13 days post planting

IN THE GARDEN:

My carrots are sporting secondary leaves now. When I transplant my tomatoes in that bed, I’m going to try to leave as many carrots as possible and let them finish growing. That way, I can at least get some kind of carrot harvest out of this winter crop.

Scarlet Nantes carrot seedling

Scarlet Nantes carrot seedling

This weekend, I cut down the red clover ground cover I had planted in several of my raised beds. In a couple weeks, I’ll pull up the roots and turn it all under in preparation for spring planting.

Red clover cut down in my raised beds

Red clover cut down in my raised beds

NEW SIGNS OF SPRING:

My yard is full of chickweed that is now blooming. Whenever I’m outside, I pull some and throw it over the fence for my neighbor’s chickens.

Chickweed blooming

Chickweed blooming among the clover

I have three grape vines I planted this fall. Two of them have picture-worthy leaf buds on them. (Still waiting on the Concord grape vine to show buds.)

Leaf bud on Reliance grape vine

Leaf bud on Reliance grape vine

Leaf buds on Marquis grape vine

Leaf buds on Marquis grape vine

Saturday, I found the very first leaves on the apple trees I planted this fall. There are “nubs” on both my Granny Smith and Pink Lady trees, but the Pink Lady is the first to show leaves. SPRING IS COMING!

First leaves on Pink Lady apple tree

First leaves on Pink Lady apple tree

What signs of spring are you seeing in your garden?

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