I’ve decided to buy some seedlings.
I know, I know. This whole time I’ve been talking about starting everything from seed. It’s better to start from seed because then you don’t risk bringing in the diseases and pests that might be hanging around your local Lowe’s or gardening center. Besides, the seedlings at our local Lowe’s looked pretty badly taken care of the last time we were there.
So, what put it in my head to buy seedlings, then?
Well, it’s almost June. June is when our CSA deliveries begin! Yay! We’re excited to have the fresh vegetables come in while my tiny seedlings are still attempting to grow. I went to our CSA’s webpage the other day to see if they’d decided on a start date for our deliveries yet (they haven’t – it all depends on the veggies) and what did I find but the annual heirloom tomato sale.
I’m not really interested in growing tomatoes. We get a ton of gorgeous tomatoes once the share starts coming in, and our friend Justin has been working on growing his tomatoes for months already, so his are going to be fabulous. We’re going to do some veggie swapping with him for sure, assuming that I’m able to get some veggies out of my seedlings.
A little poking around on the website made me realize that they have other seedlings, too, not just tomatoes. Obviously, these are people whose growing practices I support – I can’t wait to eat the food they grow this summer! It’s also a way for me support the farm a bit more since they do so much for the members. We really have one of the best shares around this area, in my opinion.
I am, of course, also a little nervous still about how small some of my seedlings are still, especially the herbs. I’m hoping that they’ll all prosper and be awesome, but buying some seedlings is another way for me to guarantee that we’ll have a crop of veggies in our backyard this year. Charlie and I talked it over a bit, and at the terrific price the CSA was offering – $3.00 a seedling/set of seedlings, depending on the plant, with a 16.5% discount if you buy at least $30 worth, we decided to go for it. (I don’t really know what they’re supposed to cost, but for super organic plants that are leaps and bounds ahead of mine, that are also contributing to the well-being of all the happy veggies I’ll get all summer, it seems quite fair.) They’ll come in 3″ pots and they’ll already be 6-8″ tall!
So what did I buy? Mostly herbs! Our thyme and marjoram are doing ok, but not fantastic, and our rosemary is doing pretty well if not a little spindly. I was planning to start the other herbs from seed outdoors when it got warm, but since the other ones have come up so damn slowly, I decided to secure my awesome herb garden a bit more. I bought five basil seedlings (large leaf Italian variety) – we’re going to be making some awesome pesto to put up for later in the year, two Greek oregano seedlings, one extra German thyme seedling, just in case, and two moss curly parsley seedlings.
And, since I couldn’t help myself, I decided to get two black beauty eggplant seedlings. We grill those suckers all the time in the summer, and probably will even more frequently since Charlie just got a brand new fancy grill for his birthday. I think I’m going to grow those in containers, but I need to do a little bit more research first. I’m hoping that Farmer Rich will be at the pickup on Saturday to give me a bit of advice!
The downside is that we missed the date for the pickup that’s near us, but the upside is that we get to go for a nice drive in the “country” and possibly stop in to see our friends Teresa and Mikey, who live not too far from the plant pickup location and are moving all the way to Texas next week.