Welcome to Cranky Puppy Farm!

This blog belongs to two Gen X-er's smackdab in downtown Kansas City where we've been renovating and decorating two old Victorians built in the 1890's. Our life is filled with 3 demanding Pomeranians (1 of them cranky, of course), honking cars, noisy neighbors and the hustle and bustle of city life but we dream of the day when we can move to our 40-acre farm and hear nothing but the wind and the cows next door. Until then, we're chronicling our triumphs and mishaps here as we try to garden and preserve on 2 city lots, raise chickens, and learn all those things we should have learned from our grandparents. Welcome to our world - we hope you'll stay awhile!

I've Been a Busy Bee

Sunday, March 04, 2012

Sorry for the delayed posts this weekend, folks, but I have been hard at work on that "honey do" list.  I can't wait to share one of our garden projects with you, but it's a long post so it will have to wait until tomorrow.

We were blessed with 60+ degree weather again today, albeit the wind was so bad it would blow the hair off your head!  This morning, I decided to sit out on the patio and get some of my seeds started.  Worked great until the wind started kicking up and blew my seed packets off the table.  But I did finish and it's a relief to finally have that done.  Here's what I've planted so far:

  • 18 blocks of beefsteak tomatoes
  • 9 blocks of roma tomatoes
  • 9 blocks of Early Calwonder peppers
  • 9 blocks of jalapenos
  • 9 blocks of Big Red peppers

I'm using one of those Jiffy starter kits - you know, the kind you can buy at any big box store.  It's too late to do this now, but I think I'll try my hand at soil blocks next year.  From what I've been reading, planting with the soil block method encourages air circulation and there's no way for the seedling to become root bound because there's no pot.  The real benefit, however, seems to be that there's no "transplant shock" that's normally associated with moving seedlings from their initial pots to the garden (you know, the time right after you transplant when it seems like the plants are lagging.)

Soil blocks are made from a special combo of your own garden soil and either peat moss or sphagnum.  With the right mix, the blocks will stay compacted and won't fall apart.  You use a special tool to compress the mix into a cube and also create a dimple in the top, which is where the seed is planted.  You can buy soil blockers all the way from 3/4" up to 4".  I'm thinking about buying either the 1.5" Mini 5 or the 2" Mini 4 to create my starter blocks.  Both of those will then fit into blocks made by the Maxi 4" blocker, so I'll need one of those as well.  Since I have some time, I'm going to keep my eyes peeled for some of these on sale somewhere, since that's a $130 investment for just two pieces of equipment!  Maybe I'll put it on my birthday or Christmas list.

But, for now, the little seeds are tucked safely away in their little terarium and we're patiently awaiting some sprouts.  And I am on my way to being tucked safely away in bed.

Stay tuned because tomorrow I'm going to take you with us as we build our potato bins!

1 comment:

  1. Boy you really have been busy. I started my seeds 3 days ago, after we haven't had snow all winter and work up this morning to snow!


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