Saturday, December 19, 2009

Winter Gardening

Since the cold weather broke, we've had gloriously sunny days. That's especially welcome as the days are at their shortest now. And when the daylight fades, I turn on the Christmas tree lights, the lights in the garlands above the kitchen cupboards, and the icicle lights on the peak of the house. It's very cheery.

But this morning was solidly overcast. The atmosphere was milky and it looked as if snow were hovering in the air. Around noon, the sun started to break through. I was just a little too late to get a really atmospheric picture of this little spruce laden with snow. We are thankful to have a good snow cover insulating the perennials and shrubs. Besides that, it's a beautiful scene outdoors these days. Our daytime highs have been in the single digits and the overnight lows dipping down to around -14C. That's pretty comfortable winter weather.

My little experiment with container gardening in the solar space is going well. These two containers were seeded late in September, and I've been picking from them for about four weeks now.
It stays very cool in the solar space, just above freezing at night, so the growth is very slow. But I'm able to harvest one spinach and one lettuce salad each week.

You can see that a few lettuce seeds accidentally fell into the spinach pot. No problem, just let them grow up together.

Other years I've seeded pots like this in the spring, starting them in the greenhouse when we begin heating it in March, and transferring them to the back patio when the weather warms sufficiently. But after the success of this fall seeding, I'll be sure to do this again. I'd much rather pick it from our own pots than buy it in a plastic bag that was shipped from 2,000 km away.

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