Nothing stands in the way of progress

Well except the cold, the wind, the rain, non-gardening work and feelings of fatigue after doing too much in a time of pleasant conditions.  I’m beginning to think I’m getting a bit soft.  I have memories of seasons years ago when I would have pushed through on a cold day with gloves, a beanie and oodles of good intentions.  I got stuff done.  But in the old garden, a window of time where it was nice weather and the soil wasn’t soggy was an opportunity not to be wasted.  Dry crumbly soil was a rarity and an afternoon shower could set you back weeks.

Freshly transplanted seedlings

It always feels great to transplant seedlings so they can stretch their roots and take up their space.

In my new garden things are different.  The soil is very rarely soggy and if it ever is, its not for long.  Maybe this is making me soft.  The sense of urgency has been removed.  So, when the day is dry but unbearably cold (by my standards up here in the northern Waikato) I wimped out and headed indoors.  But to be fair there was a driving wind with gusts around 40km/h delivering the cold and just being out in it was exhausting.  And you couldn’t blame living by the sea for this wind – it was coming from an inland direction.

Seed trays waiting for life

It is hard to believe that the majority of my abundant garden – and a fair share of extras for friends are in this small selection of trays.

But progress has been made.  On the only nice day that I had availability.  A delightful combination of things in my garden right now.  And I made the most of it.  I looked at the seedlings that were sown in early August in the corner of the dome, positioned proudly on the new shelves.  They seemed swamped by the number of seed trays that were still awaiting of signs of life, that held the hopes and dreams for the majority of my garden.  But on closer inspection (also known as admiring – which I do often, along with willing my seed trays to give up their seedlings to the light) I decided they had grown enough and really needed to be repotted in to pots of their own so they could grow on, in the journey to be amazing.

Cabbages in pots

My poor homeless cabbages found temporary accommodation in pots

It was a lovely time, in the warmth of the dome and before I knew it a couple of hours had passed me by.   Looking around the green to brown balance in the greenhouse had changed and it was the plants that dominated the scene.  As repetitive and time consuming transplanting can be – it is one of my favourite spring chores as I get to know each plant personally and imagine them taking their place in the garden in full maturity.

brassica harvest

The brassica harvest upon eviction was on the large side – but nothing was wasted – we’ve been eating brassicas for days!

Feeling encouraged by my efforts, instead of stopping there I decided to deal with my brassica conundrum.  I really wasn’t sure what to do about the young cabbages still growing there.  They were starting to heart up so could have been good candidates to be eaten, but it felt too soon.  But I needed the space, and greedily all the other spaces in the garden.  There wasn’t a single spot that could temporarily house some poor wee cabbages – so I dug them up and bunged them in pots.  They haven’t seemed to mind – so far.

Dehydrated Kale

Dehydrating the mountain of Kale seemed like the best use of it. It can be eaten like chips or crushed on a meal as a garnish to sneak greens past reluctant kids and added to all sorts of things. The Kale consumption in this house has gone up immensely since the crunchy goodness emerged from the dehydrator.

This cleared the way to sorting out the bed, removing the spent, bolting and ready to harvest crops.   It felt good in the afternoon sun to be changing the shape of the landscape once again.  Some of the brassicas had gotten quite tall and as the end bed in the first row, you eye is drawn to them.  I then refreshed the bed and mixed in compost, well rotted manure and other bits and bobs and should have probably stopped there as the day was getting on.

Pea seedlings

It didn’t take long for the peas to go from enjoying being alive to needing to move on to a new home.

But I saw my pea seedlings sitting there…  waiting… and thought it wouldn’t take much longer to finish the job and get them in the ground.  I put up their trellis and freed the seedlings from the seed tray, gently untangling their roots and lovingly securing them in the ground.  I didn’t quite have enough, so I finished the row with seeds and took my weary body inside for a quality relax on the sofa – feet up on the foot stool and did nothing more for the day.

Peas planted out

It is always great to look back on a productive day and see a row of seedlings ready to grow into their full potential.

That was 3 days ago.  Nothing much has happened since, because of the cold, the wind, the rain, non-gardening work and feelings of fatigue after doing too much in a time of pleasant conditions.  But I still feel good about it because I achieved so much.

Come again soon – I look forward to my next burst of over exuberance in the garden.

Sarah the Gardener  : o)

9 Comments on “Nothing stands in the way of progress

  1. Gosh you have been busy. I like reading your blogs and look forward to seeing the whole dome. Oh I have bought a 10×6 seed tray which was despatched yesterday so guess it wont be far away. If it were not for your video I would not have known they came that big. Thank you.

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  2. What beautiful seedlings! So green and crisp…
    I’ve direct-sown (i.e. scattered) some past-date last-chance spinach and coriander seeds in a recently vacated bed and now something has come up. What exactly it is, I’m not sure – I’ll have to wait until the leaves develop a bit more. My money’s on it being the spinach, but at least I can be certain it’s not the apple mint that used to infest that bed!

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    • That is a great use of old seeds – you have nothing really to lose. Coriander seed leaves are smallish and pointy – they almost look like the seed leaves from a pepper plant, but the spinach ones are long and shaped almost like how a child would draw rabbit ears. Seed leaves always amuse me because they are nothing like what the true leaves look like. I never weed my carrot row until the true leaves come out – they look too much like grass and I’ve accidentally pull out half a row before! All the best with your seeds. : o)

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      • Now I’m even more confused – the seedlings I’ve got have round leaves. I wonder what they are…
        I guess I’ll have to follow the traditional method of classification: wait for it to get a bit bigger and then see what it tastes like!

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  3. Look at your lovely little seedlings, so much potential in every plant. I’m thrilled that peas can be direct planted now, saves the potting on step.

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  4. Oh, those unfortunate cabbage. At least they look good so far. It would be a waste if they do not get a home.
    Does the dehydrated kale get canned like that, or is it just dehydrated in the jars? I dehydrated a bunch of stinging nettle, but just put it in jars so that I do not need to leave it hanging out like it was when it was drying. It can get dusty that way.

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