Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Herbs Galore

Thanks everyone for dropping by this Tuesdays edition of tending the garden.  Today I have some great news.  The little herb garden we started last Thursday is really doing well.  It only took three days for the sweet basil to sprout and four days for the chives and oregano.  One of the great things about following other gardener's posts is I get togather and then apply lots of useful information.  It also helps to follow the instructions.

I had been having a difficult time starting rosemary from seed in the past and then I noticed that the seed supplier, Burpee, recommended using a seed starting formula.  So I made a trip over to the local nursery and picked up a bag of Miracle-Gro Seed Starter Potting Mix - 8 Quart size.  Let me tell you, this stuff is amazing. I have been gardening for over 40 years now and this is, in my opinion, some of the best soil for starting plants from seed I have seen.  

 While at the nursery I also spotted a seed sprouting kit by Burpee. I don't have this exact one but I have to say it is well worth the few dollars I spent.  Burpee 72-Cell Greenhouse Kit - Seed Starting. It's one of those "Why didn't I think of that Items?"  How it basically works is there is a tray of seed compartments with drain holes on the bottom.  This tray fits into a larger tray which acts as a reservoir for the excess water applied when watering.  The holes at the bottom of the compartments then allow the starter soil to wick up the excess water as needed.  The result is that the soil stays moist for days which allows busy people like me to forget to water on occasion.  This is a great setup for anyone wanting to start plants from seed.

I am very excited that three of the six entries from last week have made an appearence.  I am still waiting for rosemary, cumin, and paprika to show their little buds. As you know, I haven't had much luck in the past with starting rosemary from seed, and although it is recommended that it be propagated from cuttings, I don't want to give up just yet; after all, I did buy the seeds. Also, the germination period for rosemary is about three weeks. It has been know to be a bit difficult to start from seed but once it is established it it very easy and drought tolerant which makes it a plus is the desert where I live.

The paprika seeds I bought On Amazon.com from Mountain Meadow Seeds.  These folks really pull out all the stops when it comes to service including many handy growing tips.  I also appreciate the fact that they took the time to write a little personal thank you note and a smiley face; This is how business should be done and that is why I am so fond of grassroots businesses and organizations.

The cumin I also bought from No Thyme Productions.  I'm not sure what they have against thyme but again, they offer the same personal care as Mountain Meadow so they will get my business and my good words again. Search Amazon.com for no thyme productions  They are located in Kirkland Washington and they have a website, http://www.seriouslyseeds.com/   They have great prices and delivery and are really worth a look  As for cumin, well this will be my first time growing it but I am very hopeful of being successful because my frien Dave at Get Dust needs to have a local grower.  Anyhow,  I'll leave you with a picture of the progress of my little herb garden.  Until Thursday, Happy Gardening  -Scott-

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