Friday, March 20, 2009

Recession garden? Bring it on!

A few seasons back I waited too long to buy seeds. I didn't get any pole beans, and my bush beans turned out to be both green and yellow. Surprise, Green Bay Packer colors! But seriously, I prefer stringless pole beans for ease of harvest and preparation.

Last summer compared my small backyard plot to the WWII era Victory gardens. Today's news is full of a new term: Recession Gardens. Folks across the U.S.A. are figuring out what we backyard gardeners already knew: fresh home grown veggies are inexpensive and delicious, with less risk of contamination in the harvest or shipping process. But with the new found popularity of vegetable gardens comes a drawback: not a run on the bank as in the Great Depression, but a run on the seed companies!

I can't get out to buy seeds right away. Despite the thick piles of snow still on the ground, I have Spring Conferences at school this week and next. I won't have the time or energy to shop around. I could order online, but I'd really rather buy locally and stimulate my neighborhood economy. For what it's worth, whenever I get it together, here comes the plan! Step one in any major shopping endeavour: make a list! So far, here's what I own.




I think the beans are covered now: I have both pole and bush styles, green and yellow. Herbs are good: see the thyme, oregano, basil, dill, and more on the left. Only one package of spinach, and that's about it. The black beans came from a plant I put in by mistake last year; I didn't have my reading glasses on for the fine print. Oops! I like black beans in soups and chili, so I'm going to try them again. The painted rocks were a student gift a few years ago; I still love them.

Here's the seed shopping list for now:
Peas, squash (zucchini, green), parsley, lettuces, a little more spinach.
Plants:
Tomatoes (cherry, Roma, and big juicy ones), peppers, broccoli.
Asparagus! I've done the research, and I think I'm ready.


The chives and green onions will come back, as will the rhubarb and the raspberries. It's time to go back to the store and see if they still have a good supply next to the snow shovels, anti-freeze and ice melt!





Parent Bloggers Network is talking about green living this week. What can be greener than a backyard garden, complete with home-grown compost? They're also featuring green cleaning supplies from the Nature's Choice line by SC Johnson. Great idea, but I'd still rather play in the dirt, er, I'd rather weed the garden than clean my house.

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13 Comments:

Blogger Green Girl in Wisconsin said...

I'd rather weed than clean, too. I ordered my seeds and am getting itchy for them to arrive--big fans of spinach and Masai beans at our house.

3/20/2009 10:48 AM  
Blogger Club 166 said...

Thanks for the reminder. I have to go out with the kids and get seeds before they're all gone.

Just have to decide whether I'll tackle corn this year.

Joe

3/20/2009 3:24 PM  
Anonymous Pamela said...

We're putting in our garden beds this weekend - yay! I've got tons of little seedlings and all my seeds. We can only do half our garden now, half later, but I can get my early seeds planted. Hey, thanks for popping by my blog last week! (Sorry so long for a response from me - we're still settling in from moving house.)

3/20/2009 7:21 PM  
Anonymous Melissa said...

I am starting my first ever garden this spring!

3/20/2009 9:41 PM  
Blogger Minnesota Matron said...

Hello fellow teacher! Yes, we did go all the way through the district with the plans, but people's reactions made me reconsider -- what if other parents in the show compare and are unhappy with their district? They point to mine and then there's trouble? Anyway. . . so I gave the post a new twist. Happy spring and gardening season!!!

3/21/2009 12:37 PM  
Blogger Margaret Cloud said...

I am starting this week to plant indoor and hope our weather gets warm I am tired of the chilly air. Thankful we don't have any snow.

3/21/2009 12:56 PM  
Blogger Magpie said...

I planted peas the other day, and was happy to see the rhubarb coming up! (It was a pass-along plant, from a neighbor who moved away at the end of the summer...)

3/21/2009 8:56 PM  
Blogger Flea said...

I think we'll be starting our seeds this week!

3/23/2009 2:21 AM  
Blogger CMamaFishy said...

I garden every year...and it is my passion and my stress release!!!

3/23/2009 11:40 AM  
Blogger kdsalm said...

Don't delay any longer buying garden seeds. As you say, there is a run on garden seeds now (I discovered this problem last year).

I started buying my garden seeds in JANUARY and now (April 1st) I have all the seeds I need for the year. Buying as many seeds as you can from locally-owned businesses is always a good thing.

I have had good luck the past few years with garden seeds from DOLLAR GENERAL stores, so I buy a lot of my seeds from there. This year, the price for the small packets increased from 25 cents to 33 cents and the volume of seeds has decreased by about one-third. However, for a few dollars you can buy a lot of good seeds at just 33 cents per packet.

Also, don't discount the mail-order seed catalog companies entirely. There is no end to sale prices, free shipping promos, and bonus seeds. The catalog seedsment also offer exotic and less-common vegetable varieties that are not easy to find otherwise. Purple Pole Beans and Yellow Beets are some of my favorites.

I like to grow 4 different types of cucumbers (slicers, picklers, seedless, and burpless) and those can be sourced from catalogs. I have plans for 15 different winter squashes from Orange Buttercup and 3 different Cushaw; Golden Butternut; giant neck-pumpkin Butternut; Delicata; and my most favorite Boston Marrow squash.

In 2008, my biggest disappointment was in trying to purchase more seed potatoes. I waited too long and there were none available locally anywhere.

4/09/2009 12:47 AM  
Anonymous Ari said...

After years of growing great food in our tiny city back yard, my wife finally has justification to go as far as she's always wanted to. Now we are in a townhouse with no yard at all, and we have tons of containers of tomatoes, herbs, pepper plants, microgreens, even eggplants. The recession isn't that bad, at least in terms of the eats :)

4/09/2009 6:30 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Neat idea.

6/04/2010 5:30 PM  
Anonymous viagra said...

Thanks mate... just dropped by. Will look for BIKE STN when we get to Seattle. Still in Buenos Airies.

7/25/2011 4:09 AM  

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