I’ve enjoyed my first home grown salad of the season. Tender lettuce and spinach leaves gingerly harvested from the veg trug. Truly a satisfying feeling. A salad that was fresh, delicious and grown from seed in my own backyard.
Yet I seriously doubt I will grow vegetables from seed again.
It’s not that I didn’t derive a great sense of accomplishment from harvesting my own salad fixins. I did! Honestly, though, I did not enjoy the growing-from-seed experience. I did two experiments: Starting seeds in eggshells (what I affectionately call The Pinterest Salad) and direct sowing seeds into my veg trug (what I call the No-Fuss-No-Muss Salad). And if I had to choose one over the other, I prefer the latter.
Daily I misted the eggshells and the seeds quickly began to sprout. Joyous, I envisioned gently positioning my eggshell seedlings into the trug beside the No-Fuss-No-Muss experiment. The race would be on! But wait, what’s this? My eggshell seedlings became…leggy. Apparently my bright sunny window was not enough. I actually needed a grow light which would provide the appropriate light so that that lettuce would grow bushier.
Meanwhile, the seeds in the trug were, well, trugging along. They were very slow to get going. Day after day little progress greeted my pre- and apres-work inspections. Was I watering enough? Too much? Not enough sun? Too cold? I moved that trug from sun to shade to partial sun/partial shade. Time would soon tell. Wouldn’t it? The broccoli plant looks wonderful but has yet to bear broccoli.
I decided this was too much anxiety for a salad. But patience saved the day and eventually the lettuce and spinach produced lovely leaves worthy of picking and drenching with salad dressing. It occurred to me that I should have written down the date I planted the seeds so that I could generally expect when they would mature. (I think I was looking out the window during science class.) The brocolli has yet to produce.
I continued to mist the Pinterest Salad. I had read that blowing a small fan near the seedlings would strengthen their stems. Whose got time for that! It’s no wonder I prefer the No-Muss-No Fuss method to salad gardening. I eventually took my Pinterest Salad outside and attempted to plant the eggshells in a small pot. That did not work. The shell fell apart and the seedling root structure was far to fragile.
Next year, I will fill my trug with salad fixins, but I plan to buy small starter plants from the nursery, which I expect will be equally satisfying.
Do you grow vegetables from seed?
May 16, 2016 at 7:15 am
I have a community garden a mile away. Usually I just plant seeds directly in my raised beds. I did some indoors this year but I haven’t gotten them to the garden yet. It’s much easier to just throw them in the ground. I always plant arugula and radish from seed. These work pretty well. My carrots and beet seeds have not shown up yet. I like to plant my kale, tomatoes and peppers from nursery plants. Zinnias I start from seed because I fill one whole bed with these.
May 16, 2016 at 8:51 am
I direct sow flower seed like zinnias.
May 16, 2016 at 12:25 pm
Hope you paired a great wine with that anxiety producing salad! I sure do admire your commitment!
May 16, 2016 at 12:28 pm
Hope you paired a great wine with that anxiety producing salad!
May 16, 2016 at 12:30 pm
Very funny! Yes a nice white.