Re: [gardeners] seed starting yet?

George Shirley (
Thu, 27 Dec 2001 20:23:13 -0600

penny x stamm wrote:
> George, can you believe it..?  We are just 3 months behind you in our
> last frost!  What do people in North Dakota do to get something
> started???

Grow things indoors? I don't know, Miz Anne has a cousin in South Dakota but we haven't spoken to
her in about 40 years, she's sort of standoffish.

> Cold chamomile tea spritz:  never heard of this. Can you elaborate?

I heard about it on one of the gardening lists a few years ago and tried it. I keep a spray bottle
full of the stuff while I am starting plants. Supposedly has anti-wilt capabilities and also
anti-mold/mildew. So far it has worked well for me, I lose no seedlings anymore.
> Purple hyacinth bean:  is this a lablab...?  Direct seeding is always
> a disaster for me with these.

Yes, lablab, purple type, I too lost them direct seeding, no more since I start plants and grow them
indoors for a month. A friend I gave some to two years ago now has them coming up volunteer from
beans left on the vine to dry and drop. Don't know what he does different though, just leaves them
> Until this winter, I normally grow cuttings of the last summer's
> flowers, rather than veggies - usually because I simply love the
> colors.  I water and fertilize over a hundred plants which I keep under
> gro-lights the whole winter. I just gave away my entire collection of
> hoya carnosa 'shooting star' at the Master Gardener Christmas
> party, over 50 of 'em - saving two at home in case I get withdrawal
> symptoms. I still have 5 very special geraniums (pelargoniums) with
> small, light green leaves that have rusty centers, and a tall, skimpy,
> always orange-red flower. I could undoubtedly create perhaps 50
> new young plants from these 5, but the maintenance now drives
> me nuts.  I will probably -- or possibly -- do it about St.Patrick's Day,
> which should grow them to outdoor size by mid-to-end of May.

Miz Anne grows most of the flowers around this old house, she has a green thumb up to her elbow.
> The cold snap snuck up on us this week -- it's hard to jump from
> 59* (which still felt good) down to 20* last night .....  doesn't stop
> old Jimmie from taking his 3 mile bike ride every day.  He's standing
> at the window waiting and watching for snow -- he so desperately
> loves to shovel it by the hour!  The family is hoping that it will snow
> for his 80th birthday this January, for that would be his favorite
> present...
 28F last night, supposed to be that again tonight. We lost a few things that we didn't care about
but the many microclimates around our home have saved a number of them. Examples: the gingers on the
east side of the house are doing fine. They're in a 30 inch by 75 feet strip garden backed up to the
east house wall (brick) and the concrete driveway on the other side. 15 feet away is the neighbors
house so the brick and concrete masses hold heat from the daytime all night. The chiles are in
another strip garden by the west fence but between our house and the neighbors on that side, same
thing, no frost bite on any of them. Even the tender stuff in the front flower beds made it.

> Penny, NY