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Welcome! Many of us here are wintersowing for the first time this year. We hang out on this thread to discuss any and all questions, comments and happenings along the way. Those of you who are experienced - come help us! : )
I am hoping to get some time to sow some more containers of annuals and some more tender stuff. I have been saying that for weeks now and it really truly is APRIL! The thing for me is that we have a wedding this month and I am throwing a Bridal Shower tomorrow and we have out of town guests and all kinds of things this month. I don't know when I am going to squeeze it in. I just know I want to get a head start on a few things that I was waiting on.
Temps here are lower during the day, but higher at night. Weird huh? Seems we have been down in the 50s and 60s in the day, but only in the high 30s and even 40s at night. So not much chance of freezing. I think there is still like a 10% chance that we could have a hard freeze before the end of April. I have been trying to research it, but it is hard to say, and since this my first year with seeds, I never paid much attention! HA!
What are you up to these days? Counting sprouts? Still sowing?
Was going to do a couple more things today...my butterfly weed and some more milkweed and I can not find those seeds any where.
I think when I was trying to get things all together so I wouldn't loose stuff I may have thrown away the envelope they were in by mistake. aargh!!! A very nice DG'er had been very generous to share. I do have a samll container of the milkweed out...no sprouts yet.
So lesson for next year is to have a storage spot/container to put all seeds in when they arrive!!
>>These sudden cold blasts are worrisome. I will go out and cover them this evening and hope for the best.
Kathy -- i know what you mean. We are also expecting about 5 days of really cold [below freezing at night]
snow [Ugggggggg] and cold days, below 40
looks like Next Friday or Saturday will be decent.
I'm very tempted to toss a blanket over my containers... but i'm going to leave them all. I took two lil nursery pots and put them in my unheated sun room, only because they are not 'covered' and they have been very wet lately -- and i want them to dry out. but all else is on their own.
OK, so foxglove, strawflower & datura yesterday, and zinnias and 4 o'clocks today. Wheeeee! The weather here in western CT has been pretty cooperative in terms of sunny day followed by rain, sunny, rain, for about the last week.
I'm supposed to be helping DH build a deck, but I kept wandering over to my jugs and getting distracted ...
I am still torn on the whole cover not cover thing. Part of me wants to cover them but they do have the jug top over them so they are sort of covered. Part of me wants to go all of the way with this and see what happens by leaving them on their own. Of course I blew the leaving them on their own thing by watering them LOL. They got very dry. We have not gotten enough rain and that hole at the top of the jugs is sooo small.
I am sitting on the fence with the cover. Eventually I will make a decision.
Watering them will help keep them from suffering from the freeze. I had to start watering mine as our dry climate between deluges is just too hard on many things I will be growing.
I did discard covers on Linnaria and blue flax, but they get under the cloth when it dips below 30, as do most things sprouted. Largely because it is easier to just cover the whole crowd than sort them as to who really needs it and who might not, LOL!
Kathy, keep us posted about your decision and how it goes, works or does not work, okay? This fine tuning stuff is real useful.
If it will help I will let you know. I really think I am leaning towards letting them be on their own. That was part of the reason for WS. If I have to cover and uncover and pamper and bring in house, then I am no better off than if I started the seed in the house as in past years.
I am playing this one through so I know what and how to plant next year. So far WS has been so cool! Thank you all for the encouragement.
Jim, I think that has to do somewhat with the species sown, I've got all but a couple of things on your list of sprouted containers, and they are up too- some sown earlier, some later. Most of my containers that haven't sprouted were sown earlier in the winter too.
It got down to 24F here last night. Sproutlets are green and pretty and do not seem to have suffered a bit. I did not cover them at all. I admit that if I had tomatoes sprouted, I probably would have covered them but they were more recently planted and have not sprouted, yet.
It was about 60 degrees here yesterday, but supposed to be in the 20s tonight and tomorrow night. I just stuck a few jugs of tender sprouts in the garage for overnight. The hardy stuff is out there with no protection. The jugs aren't even taped anymore but I expect those to be fine.
I just sowed some of the tenders a few weeks ago but have a few sprouts of marigold, cosmos, baby's breath- just a few. Sill have some tender annuals to sow. Maybe this week.
Jim you could send us all a Godiva chocolate cigar... I'm rather partial to those.
Did any more of your double rudbeckias sprout?
I am looking for a few seeds if anyone has a few extra to trade for named daylily seeds or other plants.
Small red sunflowers
BLk eyed susan vine
purple wave or the new type petunia
I know this isn't the trade forum but I thought you guys might have some extra. I didn't get any response from the other forum.
Bluegrass...not me. sorry. I wish I had those seeds too =)
i'm in the same cover or not to cover dilema.
I have about 15 jugs that have plants as high as 3"- 4" that have not been uncovered at night. It's snowing now and expected to be 28 tonight. it was almost 80 here yesterday!!!! the ground is very wet but theres no accumulation yet.
my dad says put a blanket over them but what if the blanket gets wet?
My chrysanthemums "Snow Lady" sproutlets look a little battered but no worse for wear after three snowstorms and very low temps over the last two weeks. It was 18 degrees night before last, and the wind chill must have been below zero (60 mph gusts!). I put my one WS container in a heavy pot just to keep it from blowing away. When I took it out today here's what they looked like. I am thrilled! They're going to replace all the plants I lost to late freezes...a lot!
I did 8 diff kinds of peppers yesterday. I didn't save any seeds so this is it! but, i'm going to sow my tomatoes inside in front of my uncle's basement sliding doors. haven't decided about herbs yet, but I have a lot of herb seeds.
Nuts Karen... last year i was gone a lot ... so i'm thinking though that i finally had germination in around June.
I'd have to check my [lousy] notes from last year to see if i had anything by Memorial Day. I honestly can not recall.
they got planted out in Sept.
Some of my WS babies were big enough to transplant into some 4" pots and have found new homes via the round up we had over the weekend. I had red & pink salvia coccinea and blanket flowers ready to go. These were just started in February!
I have all but 4 of my jugs with at least one sprout. The least success rate I've had (other than the ones with 0 sprouts) is with purple coneflower. I sowed 2 jugs, one only has 1 sprout so far and the other jug has 3 sprouts.
My dill was planted about a month ago and it's already about 4" tall!!
I think purple coneflower (echinacea) has low germination for a lot of folks- myself included. They can be slow too, so don't be too quick to dump them and, when you do, use the "strategic dump" and you might be surprised. I had that happen with coneflowers.
It's one of those where, even if I only get a few plants from a pack of seeds, I figure I am ahead since it's still cheaper than buying mature plants, and more fun and rewarding to grow them from seeds. "My babies", a Mom's pride.
2 nights of bitter cold temps and everything is still looking good. I have carnation and valeriana that are big enough to plant into larger pots but I want to hold off until the weather warms up a bit. They are doing so good in their little homes that I hate to disturb anything.
OK, I'll give a chocolate cigar to everyone who come to visit my babies, how's that?
Still waiting on the Rudbeckia, both inside and outside, Karen!
But, I have baby Cosmos (2 varieties) and another new dalylily cross!
Keeping in mind that the Sunrise is a cross-species cross (purpurea x paradoxa), if the seeds do germinate, they probably are going to be nothing like the parent.
I'd suggest you try Echinacea "Paradiso". These yield a wide variety of bright colors and the seed is germinating quite well for me.
That sounds like an invitation to me. Thank you. I love meeting new friends! Don't make up the guest room just yet. I will let you know when. Just keep those chocolate cigars handy.
How much ramen noodles do I have to eat to save enough money to go visit Jim?
It all depends on what you are eating INSTEAD of Tpo Ramen! Best RT airfares I find St Louis - Geneva - St Louis are between $600 and $700. Of course, once you're here, you'll have to cover room and board with work in the gardens, on the ponds, etc!!! But no Top Ramen!!! With Ramen Noodle packages running 1 Euro each, I can make a similar but tastier dish with various noodles, bouillon cubes, and stuff from the garden for about 35 centimes (Euro 0.35)!
Garden work is not a problem! Ramen is less than 20 cents U.S. I do not know anymore how that compares. During the 4 years that my daughter was in Germany I kept up but she is home now so I do not pay much attention. Too many numbers!
That is not bad for airfare. You may get many takers on garden work for room and board LOL. I hope you have those cigars ready.
That's the same price we paid for ramen when I was in University!!
Well, the price of one pack here would buy about 7 oe 7.5 packs there!
I'm not really sure that chocolate cigars exist here, so it may have to be handmade chocolate truffles.
BTW, I just seeded Blue Sage (Farinacea victoria) and Edelweiss (Leontopodium alpinum)
Hey...be careful. My uncle made an offer like that when he lived in Wimbledon and I visited for 2 weeks. Well, there and Paris for a few days. We found a flight for like $360 roundtrip. on British Airways no less. I love International flights...free booze ;)
has anyone tried the noodles called "Mama's" that you find in the oriental food markets? they have 3 pks of seasoning inside ..herbs, an oil/flavorings and then a small pk of ground chile hot peppers. yumo. we usually get them by the case when we make it to a shop. I think they're vietnamese.
Bluegrassmom I have Black-eyed Susan vine and Allysum, I will send you a D-mail.
I am hoping to pick up some coleus somewhere too. I do have a few areas that are almost 100% shade, and I am trying to figure out what will grow under there...
I pulled all my containers out into the sun today. I wouldn't be surprised if we have passed our last frost for the year. Nothing is predicted through the 17th and our nights are consistently in the 40s now. I also watered everything well, hoping that April showers will bring May flowers? Right? Even if I have to bring the showers myself. : ) I have a few more seedlings already and warmer temps are on tap for the next week. YAY!
I had some WS babies still in their container, but I'd already transplanted some. It was left open, under the carport, and it got down to 33º last night. They didn't look any worse for the wear. Yippee!
Mine have made it thru several freezes and still keep gorwing. You would think they got the hint by now to stop growing til it gets warmer. I do not think they are going to wait til it is warm enough to put them in the ground. I may have to up pot in a week or so.
I think Cosmos exist to overtake the world! LOL I love Cosmos, but I planted some a couple of years ago and they LOVE to reseed...with a vengeance!
I transplanted some salvias and blanket flowers last week for the RU. So far, they're doing great! Here are the ones I took with me to the RU. They're in little 4" containers. The plastic forks are markers so people will know what they are.
We had a week of good weather (60° - 66°) and NOW I believe in WS. These ones sprouted:
Agastache foeniculum Licorice mint
Allium afflatuense Purple sensation
Alyssum Wandering rose
Centaurea montana Amethyst in snow
Cerinthe major purpurascens
Cortus matthioli pekinensis
Cytisus Boskoop ruby
Dianthus deltoides albiflorus
Dianthus Spooky mix
Escholzia californica Buttermilk
Gaillardia pulchella Sundance bicolor
Helianthus annuus Moulin rouge
Lathyrus sativus azureus
Linaria purpurea Canon J. Went
Lobelia x gerardi vedrariensis
Matthiola flavida integrifolia
Monarda dydima Snow white
Papaver somniferum Persian white
Penstemon hirsitus Pygmaeus
Penstemon whippleanus Chocolate
Ratibida Red midget
Rudbeckia hirta Cherokee sunset
Rudbeckia hirta Indian summer
Salvia sclarea turkestanica
Silene keiskei alba
Veronica teucrium Crate lake blue
Viola wittrockiana Schweizer Riesen
It is a lot, but I have about another 150 containers with no sprouts at all. I don't blame the WS, these seeds might take some more time or are just bad seeds.
I'm happy with what came up. I never could have done so much indoors.
Well, I'm going to plant these in my garden. There are still a lot of open places there. And what I have left over I wil sell. People are getting to know I have a lot of special plants. Where I live there is just one nursery in the neigbourhood with just common plants and they are very expensive.
I have 1 sprout in the 40-cell tray I put in the unheated greenhouse (doesn't an unheated greenhouse count as WS?) and about 7 seedlings in the water bottle I seeded later and just left outside.
OK, no smart remarks, here! I'm just learning! I was trying to be "scientific" with your seeds!
Some would consider using a greenhouse the same as wintersowing I guess, but I don't. I think there is a lot to be said for snow and ice and rain doing their magic on the seeds. More natural, as it would be in the natural world. The container just protects them from washing away, being eaten or carried away be critters, and whatever else might happen out in a garden bed. I generally get good germination and survival of wintersown ruds, they're probably about the most reliable for me. Anyway, I'm glad you are getting some sprouts.
Well, while others don't seem to be doing as well with them, I'm finding that the Echinaceas and Rudbeckias are my best ones. All of those I have seeded are up. I'm still wondering about seeds of other genera!
I always get low germination on echinacea, get tired of waiting and dump the jug. I do get some sprouts, just not nearly all the seeds. Some people hold onto those jugs for years; I don't have the patience for that.
I have a lot of Echinacea purpurea sprouts in my garden every year. Really have to thin them out. I got some seeds of other Echinacea species, WS them, but no sprouts at all yet. Maybe it's important to harvest the seeds at the right time. If you're too early they might not be viable, if you wait too long, they are gone (fall on the ground and sprout). It might be the same as the Dicentra spectabilis. I really have to watch them every day when they are setting seed.
Another DGer, KD2000, told me that she preferred using gallon bags for WS and since incoming milk jugs from friends and family was so slow, I decided to give it a shot. The draw back I saw was keeping the top of the bag up up/open. I did a few where I cut the bottom of a plastic water bottle like a 16 oz size, and it seemed like that took up too much room in the bag, and since I have been the toilet paper (and paper towel rolls Hoarding Queen since I saw the tip in GardenGate Magazine...I thought I'd use a paper towel holder instead.
well...Houston...we have lift off!!! look at what I found today =)
(i think this is Virgina Stock, from a group trade)
Nanny...cute name ;) it was trial and error. it doesn't seem like the bags have as much space to sow, especially with the bottles inside, but once it warms up some, I can roll the top down. If anyone has a better way, I'd welcome the advice. maybe I'll post that question on the WS thread.
Nice Anita! How exciting to see all of those coming up!
I STILL have yet to sow any of my tender stuff.
I got out and watered everything good last week because they were all getting dry, of course, then it started RAINING for two days straight. Then on Sat my nice gentle rain turned to HAIL! ACK. I ran out there to protect some of the ones I had opened up so that they didn't get pummeled to death. I think they are ok, only my cornflowers are looking a little ragged. So I hope they recover.
This week we are in the 70s again and I too am expecting some more warmer things to get going. Especially with the combo of the rain and then the warmer temps.
We have our big wedding this weekend for my friend then I really expect to be able to spend some time outside. We will get our compost delivered next week and I should have plenty of time to get some stuff planted. I am so excited!
We have had hail a couple of times and it is so great knowing that my babies are covered by their containers and safe. I love this method! I started my spring sowing the same way this week. No starter pots in the house. This is fantastic. It is so logical and makes so much sense. Why oh why have I struggled every year trying to grow these guys in the house? They are getting sunlight and have their own little green houses and are practically carefree and I will not be carrying them in and out every day trying to harden them off.
nanny -- for part of the winter, all my seeds went outside in my unheated sun room. I just cant recall how long they were out there. I put 7 Purple MW seeds on a heat mat, i have 1 that germinate so far. and i have 1 pink also. Scarlets all came up in less than a week.
nanny -- i have not WS'ed any yet... I should do it, soon - since it's warming up... and of course when i get a few more containers. I still have Zinnias and Marigolds to do to. I've got some Zinnias on a heat mat ... last year i also did it, and most keeled over some time after germination. so far i've only lost 2 out of 14.
My 'to sow' list keeps getting longer and longer. Or else I need to start giving seeds away =)
its damp outside..windy. the pollen is killing my sinuses today and theres a new cat/kitten shelter where my potting table was at. (the sinus problems is new too...ugh) we had to rescue momma plus 4 from the shed because I didnt know she was in there and locked her up for 3 days. my brother showed up to change oil in my tiller...he's being nice to me because he's waited till the last minute to get his taxes done. So, nothing has turned out right today.
complaining isnt helping either =)
I better get great germination because I've been promising plants to everyone! I've got about 50 outside, another dozen inside and haven't yet done the bulk of my tender annuals. And I'm having a great time!!
Well, I had to work on the pond bridges and the vegetable garden terraces today, so I avoided looking at the WS containers.
Yesterday, I transplanted, into pots, about 37 HOS or individual plants from 5 WS containers.
I know! I can hear Karen and others saying that we are not supposed to "transplant" WS seedlings except directly into the garden.
Except, . . .
I don't yet have any garden prepared to take the plants that were crowding out their containers;
they were crowding them so severely as to become "leggy" and potentially too weak to survive a later transplant; and I just felt that I had to take charge here!
You do what you have to do. Just stick them into beds when those beds are ready.
I've only planted out 2 jugs. Our weather is too ugly to do anything. Cold, rainy, dark, dreary, windy... it's awful. My yard is a swamp. Of course it's supposed to be beautiful on Thursday and Friday when I'm working.
Wow! Amazing list, Anita! That's really something else! All in all I have sown 52 different kinds of seeds, so nothing in comparison to yours, though I still have all my annuals to sow. Many I will be direct sowing, as I'm just running out of time and containers, and I have so many other projects demanding my attention. I just can't keep up with it all!
LissaD, seeing as how warm you are there and still have not sown your tender stuff yet, either, I don't feel so bad.
Here's what's newly up now since the last time I posted a list of what was up:
Finally I'm seeing my digitalis and aquilegia up. I waited a long time on those. Most of them took about 2 months. I still have some that have not germinated yet. Ok, I must be patient! The 'Cherries Jubilee' Achillea only took a week to germinate, and the seed package said 14-21 days. I'm psyched over those!
Yes, it's supposed to be beautiful here, too, on Thurs. and Fri., and, of course, I have to work. Good news is that the weekend, when I'm off, should be good, unless that changes. I'm also off Monday next week, and we are going to get rain. The report says showers, 40% chance, so we'll see. Hopefully it won't be much.
nannie -- when your container of seedlings looks like a Chia Pet... it's impossible to separate them [without driving yourself nuts] so you'd take that giant hunk, and split it into smaller chunks/hunks and just plant that.
sometimes, if my container is just a QT sized container... i will plant the whole thing as ONE. that is HOS.
I find gallon sized, i can quarter... then i have 4 hunks.
I used to plant HOS before but always felt like I was doing something wrong! LOL It made me feel so much better to hear that it was an actual technique (whatever that means in gardening~ Ha!) Now I feel clever.
I should have done that (Picasa) so my family can watch what i've done. They think I'm crazy too! I'm like the bag lady, collection jugs and bottles. fruit containers. cereal bags. its bad.
I like how you've used several methods. Proves there is any wrong way.
Last spring I lost so many seeds by trying to direct sow and I thought I didn't need to be on DG. you know, like not being worthy, LOL. tis true. But this wintersowing has proved to be so much easier to me.
I didn't even sow my seeds 1/4" or 1/8" below...I literally sprinkled them on top of my mix and taped the lids down. nada. zippo.
Yes, it's much better than direct sowing for most things and sure easier than indoors under lights. And I can start so much more outside in the sunshine. It would cost a blood fortune for enough lights and shelves to start this much indoors. No costly greenhouse either.
I have to say, though, that I do still direct sow larkspur in fall. I get much better results.
Nannie, I did the same thing. I just sprinkled seed on top of the soil and taped the lid down. I figure if we are copying the way nature reseeds stuff then that is the way to go. I have never seen mother nature out there with a rake covering seed and tamping down earth. Seed got covered a bit by accident with the watering and that is the way nature does it too. Son of a gun it worked! I am a believer!
Heather, I love the way you've put together that web album. What a great idea. I wish I had time to do that. I spend so much time here when I'm on-line that I don't have time for many other things. Plus I work 52 hours a week and spend a lot of my free time doing gardening stuff. You know how that goes. Sometimes I wonder how people find time to do other things.
Hmmm... And I spent all that time sprinkling starting mix on top of the seeds, and now I find it's not necessary at all. Live and learn!
I am doing most of my spring sowing this same way in jugs. They sprout faster than direct sowing in their mini green house and it is easier to keep them watered properly. They will be nice and strong plants when they go out in the cold cruel world in the garden.
I hear ya, I am definitely going to be more ready next year. This is the easiest way to get started for the next growing season! It relieved the pressure of making room to start seed and then trying to take care of them and lose them to damping off or getting leggy. This is too cool. I used to try to use milk jugs over my tomato plants in the garden in early spring to protect them from the cold. I should have realized then that the best thing to do would be plant the darn seed in the jug in the first place LOL!
Way to go. One thing I like about w/s is that you can customize it to your own needs - whatever works for you! I'm taking my coffee out to the patio now and seeing how my containers look. I haven't been out there since last weekend.
Ive not heard updates lately about Lorraine, but I hope she'll be back soon. I think its been almost 2 months, hasnt it? In the Mixed Seed Nuts thread, Lorraine was the first to mention WS to me, so its all her fault that my back porch and sidewalk look like a milk jug jungle, lol.
I wanted to brag...Friday I transplanted 10 pots of Tarragon from one 2ltr bottle!!! I made a hefty one for me and could have made the others smaller and possibly made 20 pots, but since I planned to give these away to family/friends I didnt scrimp. I did the HOS method ;)
Friday and Saturday were gorgeous days. my front porch and the two flower beds next to the house are cleaned out. Spring was here...now its rain till Wednesday then colder nights again. I wish she'd make up her mind. ;)
I'm glad to hear that your "tarragon" was so successful! As you are planning to give these away to so many, I fear that you are thinking that they are "culinary" tarragon ; i.e. the tarragon used in cooking.
I hope not!
Culinary tarragon (also known as "French tarragon" almost never sets seeds and is, therefore almost never grown from seed. On the other hand, "Russian tarragon", a cousin, and just as deceptive as a Cold War sleeper agent, looks a lot like French tarragon, even smells a lot like it, but has (relatively) almost no flavour, BUT can be and routinely is grown from seed.
Hope I'm not raining (too hard) on your parade here! If so, I'll be happy to try to send you a few rooted cuttings of French tarragon later in the year!
I did! I do! Have "Poached Egg Plants" growing. Last week, I transplanted 11 of them to individual pots. There are still a few in the jug. Mine came up a bit more sparsely than yours, and I am of an age where it is hard to radically alter habits all at once, so I am still "transplanting" before "setting out". Hey, well you guys got me this far, anyway! No, but it's cool, because each of my transplants are showing really strong growth and I'll be able to put them exactly where I want them, with confidence!
We've had a few days of really nice temps...into the 70's. Not bad considering it was snowing on 4/14! The warm weather is just what many of my seeds have been waiting for. I've got lots of little sprouts. :) I'm not really organized enough to list them but I can tell you a couple that I'm especially excited about~
These are all things I'm sowing for the first time. Plus, I found some old Malus sargentii - Flowering Crabapple seeds that I could never get to germinate before. I looked into the jug yesterday and yep, I've got two little sprouts! Wouldn't that be something if I can actually get a tree out of the deal :)
I still have things I've sown in the house that have to be hardened off...I got a late start on this whole WS idea. But I'm so glad that I'm not having to fuss with 50 different seedling groups in the house this year!
I've been real pleased with the germination of my echinacea: White Swan, Merlot, Green Envy and Twilight (we'll see if the last two come true from seed). It is tough seeing how slow they grow, but I know from having done some regular old echinacea purpurea last year that they will have a big growth spurt sometime by mid summer. At least I still have the ones from last year which I bet will bloom sooner than these since they are good sized plants already.
Hmm, Goji berry. Do you hope to get a harvest of those PMcP? I haven't read up on them at all, but they sure have a great rep right now for being a very healthful food. Hope they do very well for you.
Veronica, don't give up on any containers yet! I've had stragglers germinate in June, so don't lose hope.
nanny, I've wintersown 6 or 7 different butterfly weeds, and only one has sprouted. Swamp Milkweed is one of those I've sown, and its one of those that hasn't sprouted. I believe its typical for them to wait till its consistently warm.
OK... panic is beginning to set in just a tiny bit.
Here I have all these beautiful plants growing and they all look so healthy. What happens when I plant them out?
I took the plunge and cut out about 1/3 of a container of poppies. They were only about an inch tall but the roots could be seen in touching the bottom of the container. It was one of those clear plastic ones. I took the hunks and I dug up a good little section of soil. Made a hole and plopped them in. Today of course they are looking a little bit shrivelled and sad! I am trying to keep them moist so they can get established. But they get quite a bit of sun. I did plant them early in the evening after they were out of direct sun so they had overnight to recover... am I doing this right?
I only did a third of the container so that if they all die I can try again. LOL. I like them better in their little containers.
Hi everyone! I've not been online for a few weeks as I just adopted my rescued dog and have spent tons of time getting her settled in! She's a sweetie--although I caught her digging in the garden--uh-oh!
I have lots of sprouts and maybe I'll list them later because my unhappy old cat finally got to sit on my lap and I dare not move ;-) but I wanted to tell you my experience from last year with transplanting some WS sprouts.
Most seedings I put right in the ground and they did great!! I was planting them in April (our last frost date is May 15) and my co-workers were appalled (?spelling) but they did really well. But some of the perennials seemed less happy and I did what you did Lissa--I took some from my container and put them in the ground and waited to see what happened. I read somewhere that there is this term--potting out maybe--where the seedlings are put in a larger pot and then stuck in the ground near the house where it's shady. Actually it's called plunge potting. And it lets the plant get strong and mature to be planted in the ground in the fall or next spring. Or that was my take on it anyway! It did seem to work with a few things and I decided to try it again this year with a few plants that I REALLY want to do well to give them more of a chance with the slugs in particular.
I plant out when the sprouts have several 'true' leaves. Then I put something over them for a week or so that provides a little shade. I planted the wallflowers, alyssum, calendula, and flax this weekend and I put a tray over some of them--one with holes in it--and even stuck some little shells around some of them cos I ran out of trays. LOL the yard does look interesting!
thats my reservation about planting all my goodies...that they'll be planted in places all over the yeard and i'll have to run around covering them up. uncovering them. Although if they've been outside so far, they are supposed to already be hardened. no? yes? for the cool weather, I think mine are ok because I have been leaving the top off of many of mine, but I will be very surprised if we dont have a couple more freezes. or snow
I intended to plant this afternoon but I had the pleasure of a satellite tv guy who was obviously on the clock.. He was here from 12:45 till 5:00pm.! at 3:30 I said, do you think you'll be done by 4:30 because I have to leave and he assured me, OH Yes...not. I finally left him fininishing up some of the outside work. so I hope to get outside tomorrow. and by the weekend its supposed to be 86!
several of my herbs (in freezer packs) are up...no sign of tomatoes and peppers.
If you've cut the tops of your containers, the seedlings should be hardened off and shouldn't need covering once planted (hardier things that would be planted now). For me, wintersowing is all about simplifying the whole process- they get planted and watered and are pretty much on their own after that. Wintersown plants seem more resilient to me.
Today I'm planting the first of my wintersown babies! Calendula, Feverfew, Lunaria, and Lupines are ready for homes, and its supposed to be in the 70's here today..doing the happy dance!
that has happened to me before too... dont know if it was the rabbits or squirrels.
my first year with MG's [in `07] I planted out over 75 lil MG seedlings... they ate all but about 7.
forget about the Sunflowers... they never last either... and with all the food i toss out there for the lil buggers, they have to eat my plants too.
I opened them and cut off tops as the sprouts began to show.
How do I know when the 'real' leaves are showing...yall I am a beginner but went full fledged into the winter sowing...it is so easy so far. I will try and post pictures of the ones I think are ready and the ones I think need more time in their baggie/container homes.
It is fun and I do think they are getting stronger.
OH -- i forgot to mention... i think my Purple Millet keeled over, but the Rose Mallow -- I've got about 5 that are nice and strong. We did have a bit of real cold weather where i lost a few when they were tiny seedlings... but i think a good 5 survived. I'm real excited about these... as they are really pretty, and i'd never heard of them before. Lavatera trimestris "Silver Cup"
UGH, I am sitting here on the couch while my husband is playing outside. We are getting compost and gravel today for our projects. And here I sit. I threw out my back yesterday morning. I have been to the chiropractor twice in 12 hours, and now I must rest...
so frustrating. I am not sick, I am not tired, I just can't put any weight on my hips. I guess this is one way to get me to slow down a bit.
Joy of joys though, some of the irises that I rescued last fall are putting up flower stalks and I got 5 daylillies from Wandasflowers when she was giving away daylillies to newbies last fall and one of them is going to flower as well. My first daylilly!
Lissa, the good thing about gravel and compost is that it will still be there in a few days. You need to take care of YOU.
Lynn, hurry...go look...we're in suspense. I bet/hope they are OK.
I sowed Anise Hyssop, Lemon, Genovese, Cinnamon and Sweet Basils today. 1 more. ??? and my peppers that I sowed last week have teeny sprouts opening up! my hungarian wax peppers!!!! yeah! the one and only pot that i used a plastic coffee can and spread saran wrap across the top, then held it in place with a rubber band worked!
maybe my tomatoes will be right behind that. I rearranged my pots and freezer bags. more pictures when the sun moves to the other side of the house.
and cleaned out two more flower beds. I thought it was getting awfully hot out. when I quit, it was 84 degrees!!! can you say, Farmers Tan?
AND...the guy finally came with the tractor to plow the garden today!!!
Where has the season gone?? there are still more seeds i want/need to germinate.
I have only WS'ed 1 MG [no germination yet] but yesterday i found a seedling out in a bed. I'm thinking it's GrandPa Ott, due to the seedlings location.
It just started pouring again... checked the radar though, and it should blow thru quickly... the winds here have been howling the past few days... yesterday i actually found it tiring to be out there in it. Luckily none of my containers blew away... i had some of them out 'sunning' on my patio ,,, then the winds really whipped up and i had to get them back in their boxes. And silly me - i was out there with my note pad and clip board with spreadsheets trying to take inventory -- that wasn't gonna happen... everything kept blowing away - than heavens i have a fenced yard.
Hopefully i can get out there after the rain, as i know i have a few more seedlings that i have not had a chance to make note of,
[listening to the weather in the background... some storms may be severe, winds 25-40mph ... no mention of gusts]
I am so behind in my record keeping. I have scraps of notes everywhere, in pockets, in the GH, in the garage, laundry room, by the computer. I really need to get organized.
I agree, Teresa, where has the time gone? I still have seeds to sow, also.
Yesterday, I almost planted the Cherry Tomatoes and the Atkinson Tomatoes that I got from the Piggy Swap in an EB. They are still small, is it better to wait until they are larger?
As a former Washingtonian, I'd give the tomatoes a chance to grow and not put them out until about 15 May. But then, I grew up on "the other side". When I lived in Seattle, I never planted tomatoes out until early June!
This comment may generate some other ideas, from folks still growing in the PNW, but I think waiting is better.
Jim, I have to agree with you. I was just over anxious. When I brought them outside, they looked so small. I am going to take them out of their teeny pots and pot them up, but leave them in the GH.
I feel for you Teresa. I hate the severe wind. I grew up near Omaha, NE
Nannie, I am envious of your Farmer Tan! I would love to see a few days of 80 degrees. Post the pictures, not the Farmer Tan pix, LOL, well maybe the guys would like them!
I may be the only guy here, but I'm always open to pics of tanned women gardeners!
I am still "transplanting" my WS plants. I guess I am just less organized than others : I simply do not yet have places to put them!!! Priority goes to the veggie beds. Actually, the transplanting is pretty cool, because you get to see these plants begin to mature; and you get to give them away; and you get to hear people say, can "I have one of those?"
Anita asked about 3 or 4 screen pages earlier if I was now "sold" on WS.
Well, in a word, "No".
I will have far more flower plants than I have ever had before. AND that's great.
So far, way less than 50% of what I WSed has shown up. That's not cool
[I admit that all failures may be my own for WSing seeds I should have sown indoors or sown later; but how do you know if you don't try? Unfortunately, some that have not germinated are ones I normally germinate indoors. Fortunately, some that have not germinated are ones I normally germinate indoors AND I kept seed!]
I am also disappointed that some of my "experimental" seeds (crosses, mutants, other oddities) that normally require vernalization have failed to germinate by WS. Again, I have kept extra seeds to try under my usual controlled conditions.
I planted 3 varieties of tomato as a WS test. So far, only 1 has germinated. Meanwhile, my "normally grown" tomatoes are burgeoning! The "test" is not done yet, of course, but WS for tomatoes is not looking good.
I sowed 6 varieties of peppers and chiles in WS, and 46 varieties inside to grow under lights. I had success with 43 of the indoor sown peppers, and most are now outside during the day and in the GH at night as 6" - transplants (I cannot reliably put them into the garden until the end of May). Not a one of the WS varieties have appeared yet (and all sown were ones that did successfully germinate indoors)
Consequently, I remain "iffy" on WS.
I see both advantages and disadvantages.
I do think, however, since this is my first attempt, that there is a lot to learn from this, and that a more judicious choice of seed to sow (and when) in subsequent years will probably add this technique to my repertoire as suitable for suitable plants, if that is clear!
This is my first year to winter sow and I'm very impressed! I'm also scared to death to lose the sprouts I have so far, and very nervous that if everybody survives... where in the world am I going to put them, and when will I have time to plant them!?
Edited: Removed outside link to spreadsheet. Sorry if I offended, or worried, anyone with the link.
Uggggggg. we jsut got pelted by hail!! i ran out to cover my seedlings... all seemed OK, but i did toss a sheet over the.
and brought in my Yvonnes... luckily that was unscathed... as were all my new hostas in pots.
Just out of curiosity, why are those of us referring to our "journals/records/spreadsheets/etc" not referring to DG Garden Journal records? That's where all of my data is, but when I refer to it, no one seems to look at it.
Is the DG Garden Journal format not useful to folks? Hard to refer to?
Why would you prefer an X'cel spreadsheet?
I'm just really curious, because I have been using the DG Garden Journal and found it really useful for WS, so I am really curious why others keep referring us to weird offline databases.
With all due respect, not knowing "Sundownr", there is no way I am going to open my computer to rabid viruses by clicking on a "google.com" link when DG offers a perfectly good, and secure, journal option . . . unless someone can give me a good explanation of why that was a better choice than using DG's secure sytem and how safe it is for me to access that remote point.
Jim -- i think it's because i know excel and find it easy to work with... I have not had the time to figure out The Journal ... i thought i would have over the winter... but i dont know where all that time went.
Each year i can add sheets to my "Book" so i have the previous years to refer to. It's jsut been easy for me... and for me to enter all that data into what Daves offers... i shutter at the time that may take... and time i just dont have right now.
I've got well over 200 seeds in my database, then i have a list for the containers I've sown.
cripes... and i'm a house wife... i honestly dont know how working women/men do it.
I'll take a peek at your journal ... when i get a free moment tonight... now if i can just remember why I sat down in this chair again... I know it was for something not Daves related... but i tend to be drawn here.
Honestly Jim I have tried to figure out the garden journal and I haven't been able to figure out how to add to it!
I have always been familiar with making databases in Excel so that is what I used. this way I can sort data by the categories I have included. I also use Google.docs for a lot of applications. It is a very safe application to use and to share.
Here is my google doc spreadsheet. I haven't updated the most recent rash of sprouts. I only have about 25 containers out of 115 that haven't germinated.
I'm very sorry if I broke some type of protocol with the outside link to my WS spreadsheet on Google. I wasn't aware that viruses could be hidden in them, but I guess it's possible, so I removed it.
To answer your question, I used Google Docs for my spreadsheet because it was handy, I'm already familiar with it, and I haven't taken the time to look over the Journal and how it functions. I'm sure the Journal is a great little tool, as others have said, and some day I will get around to looking at it.
OH Bev, I don't think there is any rule about it. I was very interested to see your seeds and what you have growing. I think Jim was just being cautious, and there is nothing wrong with that! Everyone has their own comfort level with sharing information and clicking on links, etc. I have a whole business online and so I go a lot of places and see a lot of things. Google docs is one of the programs I use a lot so I didn't have a problem using their link. :)
Welcome! Glad you could join us. It is so fun to see the different types of seeds everyone grows. I am not doing a lot of veggies yet. I only have a cherry tomato so far, but I had 10 sprouts that came up. LOL. I will probably be able to keep the whole county in cherry tomatoes!
Bev - Sundownr ... i missed yours and now i see you edited it out... i'd like to take a peek... i like ot see how others do their spreadsheets. If you dont want to repost it... you can send it in Dmail.
I think LissaD answered for me!
There is no protocol, and you did not offend in any way, Sundownr.
It's just that DG has the tools, yet I find that few seem to be using them.
At the same time, having spent 1000s of dollars replacing a system wiped out by opening a "google" document -- not to mention the ongoing project after 7+ months of reconstructing an address book and recreating lost documents and info -- there is no way I will again open a "google"-based document.
Some days, I just don't sleep much, Teresa! Comes with aging, I guess.
I never knew about the DG Journals until I started WS, and now I find it irreplaceable.
I also use Xcel for some things, such as keeping track of heights, spacing, light, water & fertilizer requirements of perennials. So, in my opinion, they all work together.
For reference to others' work, however, I like the DG Journals because I am 99% sure that if I open one I'm not going to be "bitten" by some new bug that will get past my firewall and anti-virus.
anita -- for some reason... i just can't get the hang of access.
I was hoping my library would have a 'class' for it [like they do word, excel and PP] but there is no demand for learning it. Odd. tried to muddle thru myself.. but i just dont get it.
>>just don't sleep much, Teresa! Comes with aging, I guess.
I hear that from my mother-in-law too, and my mom is getting close...i know she's an early riser - though she says you have to be when living in the desert [southern AZ] because you have to get the work done before it gets too hot.
Jim -- i see what you mean about the Journal ... i guess once i figure out how to get the data in there... it'd be easy enough to use.
i see you have "Argentine Jasmine" Mandevilla laxa -- i got some from Ilsa too.
I did mine on a heat mat in a south facing window. out of 7 seeds, i had 4 germinate ... i think 1 died ...
though there are two good sized seedlings. I'm hoping for the best - not sure how they will do in my zone, but she said they did fine for her mother - who was in a colder zone... so we shall see.
I understand the sleep thing- I can't sleep past 6 a.m. anymore. Usually I'm up before 5:30. But I go to bed by 10 most of the time.
I've never learned to use the Journal, either. I've used an Excel document in the past and it works for me. I figure if I ever give up membership to Dave's my info would be lost. The spreadsheet is mine.
i havent had time to re-do what I accidently started as a table in Word. and I lOVE working with Excell. What was I thinking?
as long as it works, no?
i actually had to water my WS jugs tonight! these 84-87 degree days weren't supposed to happen this soon. I almost lost 2 jugs from the heat, can you believe it??? it always snows when my snowball bush blooms. (which is now)
(edited to remove a wise crack that was un-necessary. yesterday was a bad day, I think. i was full of em')
Jim I know I'm a bit late to react on your DG Journals. Was too busy with transplanting my WS seedlings.
As you know I'm European, so I'm not familiar with the US common names. I always use the latin/botanical names.
Your Journal is very good, but there are 2 things that it makes it very hard to work with it for me:
1. The common names are in alphabetical order, not the botanical names
2. If I want to see how some of the seeds I've WS'd are doing at other people, I have to check a lot of Journals.
I have quite a lot 'not common' plants, but even the common ones are not all on your Journal. That's not a
offense, just to let you know that I would prefer a D-base with contributions of all WS'ers.
I prefer to send my experiences to Anita (she has to wait some time, because I'm too busy now). She has a good system. If everyone sends hers or his experiences to her, we will really have a D-base that can be used by all winter sowers.
And I think that is what we all need. I had a lot of good germinations, but some seeds gave just one or two sprouts. Some others didn't sprout at all.
And, altough I have my D-base in Lotus, I can transfer it to Excel.
And, if some people have no Excel or other compatible D-base, I think Anita will try to publish their results, as she can get some help doing that.
Help it is raining buckets here. I just planted out some of my WS containers this weekend and I am afraid those and the ones still in the milk jugs out there are going to drown. It is raining buckets and I just saw a huge turtle hot footing it down the 17th fairway behind my house. He was heading north! :o)
We've had lot's of rain, too. Love it, though. Your turtle story reminded me of one of my own. Believe it or not, we had a turtle crossing sign on a street near our home with this silly looking turtle on it similar to deer crossing signs. Shortly after it was put up, it disappeared. We assumed someone thought it would look better on their wall. The saddest part was that less than a week later there was a dead turtle on the road right by where the sign was! I guess he didn't see that the sign was missing!
If you have a good amount of drainage holes in your jugs, I'm thinking they will be fine.
more sun today. its been in the 80's since last thursday! 20% chance of rain.
i shouldn't admit this but the first flower that was up, the one thats been without a lid the longest has buds on it!!! i should take a picture with one sticking thru the hole where the cap goes.
i was out of town till after 8pm last night and did something crazy to my back putting my sewing machine in and out and in the back seat to get it cleaned and serviced yesterday and I dont know if i can work outside again today. needless to say my machine stayed outside last night.
I do see you points, but let me respond.
As you know, I live in Europe (and, in fact, have not lived in the USA for 2/3rds of my life!), so I hardly know any "Common Names". Sometimes, I know the American ones; sometimes I know the Thai ones; sometimes I know the French one; and, most often, as I deal with all these flowers that are essentially new to me, I don't have a clue!
When I open my Journal, it is alphabetical by botanical name. If, when, you look at it, it is alphabetical by "common name". that is just one of those weird defaults of DG.
And it's easy to fix! Just move your courser over the column "Genus", click, and "voila!", the list will be in alpha order by botanical name!
Of course, my journal will have only the seeds I have started; and that probably has SOME overlap with yours, but only some.
"Lotus"!!! I actually did not know it still existed; or at least not in a form compatible with modern computers! I learn something new every day!
Of course, that's the other problem, from my perspective. If I were to contribute to a "D-base with contributions of all WS'ers", I'd have to either use or be able to convert my own info to a standard format in a software programme that would require me to do everything! With the DG Journal, I just enter info. It's all set up for me! And, if I go look at someone else's Journal, I know how it works and can follow what they have done easily.
Jim, I found out that it is really easy to get the botancial names in alphabetical order. Thanks for your help on this. Now I can really use your journal.
I know Lotus is very 'old', but it is much easier to use than Excel and much better. I can convert Lotus (1995 version, so 14 years old) to Excel, but I can't convert Excel to Lotus. I hate that Microsoft always tries to keep their customers away from any other program. I started my D-base in Lotus and I want to keep it there. Really don't want to have to do all the extra's I must do in Excel.
Maybe there is someone who can learn us to send in all our experiences on WS, independent which program one uses.
Here's what I planted today from my WS jugs. some of these are listed by the names given in seed trades:
Rose Campion (one of my favorite flowers. attached is a picture too so show how thick this thing was!)
Delphinium - Dwarf Chinese - Blue Butterfly
Chilean Monkey Flower
Echnicea - Merlot
Wild Bergamont (which is Monarda, I believe)
Cosmos Picotee Bipinnatus (this had blooms already)
Aquilegia - Double Pleat - Blue/White
Color Wheel Garden - blue ( free gift from Select Seeds)
Cardinal Climber - Ipomeoa multifida
these were the guys screaming to get out...by no means am I done
Yayyy, nanny! I had pretty good germination from the 2nd sowing of the Nicotiana sylvestris, but they're tiny and just sitting there. Hoping this warm weather gives them a boost. I've gotten some containers planted out the last few days, and am thrilled to see this rain we're getting now- they should settle in beautifully! I have germination in about 2/3s of my containers now. I discovered some slugs trying to devour my babies yesterday- something to keep an eye out for. They're typically only a problem for me on the containers that are sitting on the ground (I've moved all the containers off the deck to make room for people and furniture, LOL).
Do any of you fertilize your wintersown seedlings? They typically don't seem to need it, but I have a few jugs that seem to be growing sluggishly, and I'm thinking I'll give them a nutrient boost.
I am not bragging because I dont think it was anything i did. because if anything, i was 'sloppy' with my sowing. But Ive only seen 3 or 4 empty jugs out of 60 plus. That means that my friends here on DG's have good seeds, eh?
Neal,my starter mix was supposed to have it, but now that we've had a few rains and snows, I plan on using fish emulsion. i read that was good for young seedlings.