Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Spring has sprung..... well almost!
I have been thinking about starting a gardening blog for a long time! I finally decided to give it a try. My main goal is to keep you updated on what you may want to be doing in certain times of year, and give you some fun managable ideas about all kinds of gardening. I will focus mainly on zone 5 since thats where I live but I will try to incorporate other zone information into my posts as well.
A little about me?
I graduated from BYU in Horticulture and have a huge passion for growing just about anything. I have studied and practiced gardening all my life because I was given great parents that taught me how to garden when I was very young. I have moved on to study more about botany and agriculture after I graduated and now am a Master Gardener in Utah. The emphasis of my degree in horticulture is landscape design so I love to try new things and make things esthetically pleasing. My husband is also a horticulturist and we work together enjoying our one acre plot of land here in Utah. I hope you enjoy learning and experiencing the bounty of the earth as much as I do!!
Ok enough of that now to our first real tip of the season... It is February folks and I am itching to get out in my garden and plant those first seedlings! We have a only a few more weeks till the beginning of March and that is when I gear up to plant my sweet peas. The planting dates for peas in Utah listed on the Utah State University Extension fact sheet says March 15-May 15.... thats right by may 15 you could be eating your first food of the season. Actually there is a whole list of things you can plant in March in Zone 5, Asparagus, Brussel Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Endive, Garlic (which can also be planted in the fall for best results), Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard, Parsnips, Onions, Potato, radishes, Rhubarb, Spinach, Swiss Chard, turnips and even mentioned is peppers (I like to wait on peppers in my area because they are a little more cold sensitive).
With a list like that there is no reason to wait for the last frost date to start planting (which in zone 5 is May 5). All of these vegitables will do well in cooler weather!! Isn't that exciting! So it is time to start planning your vegitable garden, what you want to plant and where you want it. Think about two things when planning locations- what needs the most water, and where you can place it so that it gets what it needs- and planting your rows north to south so you can get the maximum amount of sunlight for your plants. Also thinking about shading will also help (i.e. you don't want to plant anything in the shade of your corn for example or other tall or staked vegitables).
Want to do more than just plan in February? This is a great time to get out and prune rose bushes, fruit trees and deadhead perennials. Rake out your flowerbeds and get ready to see some bulbs peaking out from under the soil. If you need help with proper pruning practices contact your local extension office, they usually have classses that will help you learn how to do it the right way. (it is really worth it to learn the correct way for many many reasons :))