I have not been posting lately but at least I have been gardening. It was a tough winter and a tough tax year (I worked 800 hours in 3 months), so I was kind of burned out. A cold, fairly wet spring with a lot of gray, overcast days did not help. Helping me along is the fact I’m now the coordinator for the Bolton Community Garden. Even if I wanted to ignore my own garden, I have to make sure everyone else gets off to a good start this year.
My seed starting efforts this year produced mixed results. I killed half my pepper starts, so that means no Jimmy Nardello, Padron, Tiburon Ancho, or sweet Red Cherry peppers this year. Those are plants I can’t find locally, which is why I start my own. At least the Shisito survived, which I was hoping to compare to the Padron, so that’s good. I found some Ancho Poblano starts which should be a good substitute for the Tiburon Ancho, But the Jimmy Nardello is a real loss. This is a great pepper and I can’t understand why it is not more widely grown around here.
For the tomatoes, I salvaged most but killed the Opalka starts. I reseeded them and they didn’t germinate! For Opalka I was able to substitute Blue Beech, an heirloom paste tomato from Vermont which I hope will be a more than adequate substitute. Here are my modified planting lists for peppers and tomatoes (and they are all now in the ground except for Trinidad), and the Blue Beech already has flower buds.
- Aconcagua (Cubanelle type Argentine heirloom)
- Ancho Poblano
- Revolution (bell)
- Trinidad (spice pepper, Habanero-type without the heat)
- Esterina (yellow cherry)
- Jaune Flamme
- Chocolate Pear
- Big Beef
- Sunkist (yellow slicer from NH)
- Blue Beech (paste from VT)
The garden is now almost completely planted, save for the cucumbers, which go in those unplanted squares. Since I had such germination problems with direct sown cukes last year, I have started them indoors in peat strips. Those will be planted this weekend, when the rain stops and warm weather returns. It is 61°F/16°C now, so I hope the bean seeds don’t rot until warmer weather returns tomorrow. It doesn’t look like much but I am equal to or ahead of other plots in the community garden. The raised beds are a big advantage, particularly in these weather conditions.