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Friday, May 12, 2017

Still Working That Compost

This spring has been trying, to say the least.  The weather continues to run from rain and cool in the mid-fifties (Fahrenheit) and then to sunny and a little too warm- like mid-eighties.  Garden mollusks ate up the most of the first batch of seedlings, so I'm trying to grow the second wave larger before I transplant them with the hope that their size will help save them.  Except the lettuce transplants- those got plunked into the herb bed which I'd filled with homegrown compost.  I don't know if it's the compost or the fact that there are nice, stinky herbs in that bed, but the lettuce in it is doing great! But of the few other transplants to survive in the other beds, several have started to shoot flower stalks, even though they're still only four-inch pot sized, just because of the wild vagaries of the weather.  If I did't already have problems keeping my hair in its follicles, I'd be tearing it out right now!

The new compost pile
Several weeks ago I started a new compost pile, and earlier this week I started another. The first was growing grass out the top, so that clearly had to be moved into the middle of the new pile where it would die in the heat. 

The old compost pile
After getting all the outside layer of the old compost pile into the new one, I was left with a pretty good pile of compost.  It's not quite finished, but it will work and I'll use it the next available sunny (or at least not rainy) day we get when I transplant seedlings.  

And it's only been a couple of days and already the new pile is up to 116F.

Speaking of seedlings, I've decided I need to get serious about seed starting equipment. I just don't have enough room to get the successive waves of seedlings that I need, particularly if I'm going to keep up with the slugs! I need more space for them, and I need better lighting. I've seen first hand how much better full spectrum LED grow lighting is over the old-school fluorescent grow lighting for growing seedlings. I'm envisioning at least one set up of several shelves, each with its own grow light, but finding one that's the right shape, which is a long rectangle, looks like it's going to be hard, since most of what I'm seeing is either square, or shaped like a single flood light.  Just because it's shaped like a flood light doesn't mean it actually floods light.

Spring is always a hard season for me. I want my garden to be up and running but the weather and pest pressures sure make it challenging!

1 comment:

Marc Crump said...

I tried a couple of these this year. They worked fine.