Guardian of the Pepper Plants.
I always start my tomatoes the first week of March and my peppers the last week of March. That is just how I do things around here. Had a little switch up this season. Peppers planted; I still do not know what tomatoes I am NOT going to plant. I love them all, but honestly, can a girl live all year on tomatoes? I suppose the same can be said about peppers.
Peppers are tricky in the PNW. Unlike tomatoes, if I am forced to pick them before they are ready, they will not ripen up on the side board. Most peppers need 80 to 90 days of decent weather to make fruit. Decent seldom describes summer in the PNW.
Normally I hate plastic in the garden (that was not always true) But if I want peppers they will go through different sizes of plastic pots before they go to the garden. Then they will live under a plastic tent to boost the air temperature. Some years it is mid July before summer finally comes to Everett, Washington. Without the plastic I would see few peppers.
Fat, thick walled bells and big, luxurious chili peppers come from the store. For homegrown sweet peppers we grow Italian frying peppers. For chili we grow short season Czech Black (67 days instead of the normal 90!) But even our blacks do better in a sunny season. We can grow a decent amount of Spanish Pardons which are supposed to be eaten immature. They have a nice spice. I am quite impressed with my season if it includes a few ripe peppers.
Loved this video from Donna at Rainbow Gardens. She is a great pepper teacher!
Now you know as much or more then I know about peppers. Thanks Donna!
See the little Anna’s hummingbird in the picture? He (she?) hoovers by my office window and taps on it with her beak when the feeder is empty. If I step off of my deck and into the garden she chatters at me. I think she is telling me I am trespassing. Spunky little hummer!
Debs in Everett, Washington… where I spent my morning making soil-block-mix, up-potting peas and broccoli, and planting my peppers in soil blocks made from brand new mix.
Sunshine and 35 degrees outside, 85 degrees in the greenhouse!
Peas in the greenhouse! If not for the snow and hungry squirrels, they could be planted outside. I’ve always planted my peas outside on Lincoln’s birthday. I’ve pressed those first seeds into frozen soil and into soft soil on sunny days. This year (2018) there was snow on the ground on pea planting day. Thankful for my greenhouse!
I have three pea seed varieties that I started for potted peas this year. Dakota which I’ve been saving seed for. I’ve tried Dakota in the garden and was not happy with it. But it shines when planted in a large pot. Green Arrow was also a stinker in the garden. Before I toss the seed to my chickens I decided to give Green Arrow a try in a large pot. I have friends who do not have gardens but love fresh, raw peas so I plan to bring a pot of peas to each of them. Cascadia Snap Pea is great in the garden, but I still grow a pot of them on the back deck to munch on when we have BBQ. They are lovely!
Peas can handle cold nights but with temperatures dropping into the 20’s at night, I’ve been bringing all my starts in to my kitchen at night. I’m starting to get quite a collection of starts. It is part of the joy of spring for us at the Toy Box Urban Farm. It will be nice when the nights start staying above freezing when candle lanterns are all I need to keep my seedlings cozy all night. Until then I’ll keep transporting trays of seedlings into the house at night.
More snow predicted for Everett, Washington. 36/33 degrees F. The candle lanterns will be burning all day in the greenhouse. Soup and bread sound good on a snowy day.
While watching the snow fall it would be lovely if you joined me on Instagram or Facebook for #NTin2018. Mark chapter 12 is on for today, February 23 (Happy Birthday to my Nephew Ted!) Hope to see you on the On-line fellowship later today!
Also scheduled for today, planting fava beans. If you have never tried fava beans (a.k.a. broad beans) can I just say, there is so much more to fava beans then Chianti and liver.
I have posted a video from a February when rain was the weather of the month instead of snow and freezing nights. The job of planting peas in soil blocks stays the same. Pop some corn if you have it (the video is only 10 minutes long) and get ready to get dirty!
Debs… fighting a nasty sinus infection but still getting outside
Grin, some little girl made the cone into a wild flower vase, #DogWalk at Mukilteo
Well that was bad. Sinus infection on the right side of my face that was so painful I couldn’t function for a week. Then I felt better on Wednesday (today is Friday)… for about 23 minutes before the sinus’ on the left started to swell. My mouth is raw from mega doses of vitamin C. I woke up this morning at 1 AM and realized that I feel fantastic! Hallelujah!
Since I couldn’t get back to sleep I posted the Ephesians Bible study that I was working on before the head crush came. It is full of typo’s that I need to edit but it is up. If you like, you can click here: Ephesians 1:1-2
The beach at Mukilteo on the Edge Water Side. Sunset Dog Walk
Stress, why can’t I just talk myself out of it? I remembered to pray for my former supervisor. He is prone to crones disease when he is stressed. I was very worried about him and prayed often for his health. But honestly, I thought I was OK, that this was going to be good for me (not working for the school anymore). But I had a difficult time just letting it rest. I felt so ashamed. That was wrong but it was there.
The Washington Olympic Mountains and the Mukilteo ferry dock from Edge Water
The Almighty had given me direction last spring. Put in your notice. But not wanting the school to be burdened with the need to find more teachers who will work full time for $800 a month (we are a ministry not a business… at least we keep telling ourselves that, and watch as God supplies our every need) I chalked up my notion to put in my notice to end of school exhaustion. Maybe I could have saved myself and my supervisor a whole load of misery if I had listened to that still, small voice instead of being a team player… and seriously, no one at school thought I was a team player. Lesson learned. I’m finally getting a tiny spark of feeling good about tomorrow. It’s time to get back to work, my work, my life
Debs, August 18, 2017
January 20, 2015: Obama was president and the world was going insane. I can see that looking back. But like frogs in a pan that is slowly being heated we Americans just hunkered down to wait out this presidency for the next, more tolerable executive in the White House. It seems that “tolerable” was not the Almighty’s plan for America.
When Lindsey and Missler first published this informal chat I thought is was interesting. It has only been two and a half years since I watched it. On a sleepless early morning, I put on my headphones and looked for something to watch since I couldn’t sleep. This came up on my “suggested for you” list. Days before the big eclipse that has so many troubled or excited, their talk is even more relevant to me. Have a listen, let me know your reaction.
To the King and the kingdom!
Debs, August 17, 2017 in Everett, WA
I was not supposed to be home when it came…. but I was.
We have not been camping for quite a while. Our income has not allowed it for a stretch of time. We still have to be careful, but it looks like we may be able to take a couple of trips if we can do it for the price of gas in the Big Green Bud. Now if I can just keep myself from buying too many new toys. Because I’m thinking we need this stove and pot (or at least the pot) Giggling is the sound of the day
Happy Birthday to me! I kept saying how much I liked Kelly Kettle, but did not think there was one in my future. They are not inexpensive. But there it was! Now there I am practicing on my back porch, giving it a go, bringing water to a boil, dumping it down the sink to get any factory finish out of it before we take it for a drive in the mountains. I am a happy girl!
By the way, the zebra pot has nothing to do with Kelly Kettle… it is just the next toy I want to get out into the wild with… Happy trails!
I hope doing January in February does not describe my season! Usually I am so anxious to get out and get dirty, but I’ve been hanging back a bit this year. FINALLY got things checked off of my list.
I did manage to get my onions started, even put up a video! They are doing what they do. Joy! What I am late on is moving them out to the green house. It isn’t horrible when onions stretch for the light of a window, I’m going to clip them off anyway. And it has been freezing the first couple of weeks of February. It will not be long before they stand up straight in the light of the green house.
Next on the list is Winter Sow. Pretty sure I missed that window. Instead I just started small trays of both curly and Italian leaf parsley. I also started a small tray of artichokes. My big, beautiful, three year old artichokes froze to the ground last season. Just in case it was more then just the tops, I started a new tray.
By this time of year I am usually looking for that first tiny radish or micro green for my bento. This year I am just introducing baby seed to soil.
There are scallions, spinach, mixed Asian greens, radishes and cilantro. C’mon spring!
I am ending with an older video on what to do with those onion plants once they are a little bigger then threads. By the way, I googled the nameless dandelion tool mentioned in the video. It is called a Fishtail Weeder. I find it useless for weeding. (I have a hand shovel with a “fishtail.” The curved blade provides leverage to lift up tap-roots) The video features leeks but leeks and onions are planted the same way. Hope you have some raisinettes on hand. This is too short for popping corn.
Next: It is already February 15 as I post this and I have started checking chores off of this list… but that is another post.
Now, get out and get muddy! …unless you have a greenhouse. February 15, 2017 in Everett: the few days of sun and warm weather disappear again. We are back to rain with occasional showers. 52/47 F, 100% chance of rain. If you need to go out, you WILL get wet. 10 hours, 17 minutes from sun up (7:14 AM) to sun down (5:32 PM) The Snow Moon is waning. Remember to pray for the farmers and families in the Sacramento Valley who may be loosing everything! Maybe we should all plant a bigger garden this year.