seed starting

today i made some time for my beautiful beautiful seed stash and made a job out of gettin' my hands dirty. i pulled out the box o' seed packets, my garden journal, the seed starting mix, pen, water, bowl, and newspaper pots, and got to work.

 i sat on our warm, sunny balcony, separated out which seeds to start now, and then poured a very fluffy mix into a big bowl for moistening. my hands squelched and squeezed until the mixture absorbed the water evenly, getting it ready for those tiny seeds that'll need lots of love and nourishment.

then into the paper pots it went (newspaper pots, by the way! completely free! please let me know if you'd like to learn how to make them. i may post a video on youtube soon, but if not i'd be happy to show you over webcam! way easier than spending money on plastic pots that you'll have to store and clean every year). once the pots were 2/3 full i pushed the soil down a bit and found it pleasantly springy.

and then out with the journal, lists, pen, and seeds. each little paper pot was marked with the initials of the variety it contained, and a little diagram went into my journal for remembering later.

in case you're wondering, here's what i got started today (obviously not the full list from before - most of those things will be directly sown once we're at the new house in wamego).

tomatoes: german red strawberry (big meaty tomato), zarnita (medium sized, early pink), lollipop (yellow, largeish cherry tomato - delicious!), matt's wild cherry (tiny red cherry, SUPER tasty)
peppers: king of the north (haven't grown it yet), corno di toro (red sweet pepper, horn shaped), kevin's early orange (sweet bell)
squash: yellow crookneck (pretty standard, tasty when very small)
beets: early wonder, detroit dark red (haven't grown beets before)
lettuce: bronze mignonette, jericho romaine, anuenue, deer tongue, buttercrunch (have grown deer tongue and buttercrunch, but left the harvests to my family. haven't grown any of the others, so no idea how these will all taste! i'm excited)
greens: red ursa kale (haven't grown it before), long standing bloomsdale spinach (tasty in salads!!!!!)
herbs: peppermint (I LOVE PEPPERMINT. i'm really curious to see how the flavor of these little seedlings will turn out), anise-hyssop (So good for tea, and i have a feeling it'll be great for salves), sweet genovese basil (pesto!), lemon basil (Heavenly scented flowers), english munstead lavender (i can Always use more fresh lavender in my life)

there they are in my little journal, all mapped out and coded. i wrote down the date, veg, variety, where in the tray it is, and how many seeds i put per pot.

and here they are, soaking up a bit of afternoon warmth before i bring them inside! hooray! babies on the way! i love gardening. i am so glad i moved to acorn back in 2007, so glad i forced myself to eat vegetables and so glad i learned more about herbs, and bulbs, and seed starting. only from this perspective that took four years to build do i now remember how much peace i found weeding my mom's garden back when i was young, when her tulips and hyacinths brought vivid life to our yard every spring, when weeding was relaxing and a time for connection. even though she and i are states away, i'm glad we can video chat and both watch each other's garden grow.