Growing Season…Again

We are in March and spring will officially arrive in 20 days’ time. The days get longer but the weather is still unpredictable. The night temperature remains between minus two to zero degree Celsius, with the highs reaching 8 to 9 degrees in the day. With the freezing temperature, I am afraid that the morning frost will hurt the budding spring flowers. 

First primrose of the year, 26 December 2022.
The yellow crocus popped out two weeks earlier than last year.
The yellow crocus popped out two weeks earlier than last year.

Ever since we moved from our last apartment to this house in 2021, I have started to pay more attention to the weather. The winter of 2022/2023 has overall been quite different from that of last year. The winter temperature in December was warmer than expected. It was warm enough for the ubiquitous spring primrose to show its face around Christmas. As for the other flowers, they started flowering earlier too. I recalled last year having the first glimpse of  crocus in mid February, but this year was the beginning of the month. 

My little vegetable bed with 3 types of tomato seeds as of 04 March 2023.
My little vegetable bed with 3 types of tomato seeds as of 04 March 2023.

Regardless of the unstable weather, I need to start preparing the vegetable beds if I want to enjoy any homegrown vegetables in the summer. Last year, my first summer vegetable crop composed of cherry tomatoes (lots!), green lettuce, spinach, long beans, and herbs (basil and parsley). This year, I would like to expand the range to include pumpkins, courgettes, bell peppers, and chilies. It seems like an ambitious plan…but nothing ventured, nothing gained. 

To start off the vegetable growing season, I have started with sowing the tomato seeds. This year, I have 3 types of seeds so far: 2 from my mother-in-law’s garden in Romania and one from the local gardening store. Since the weather is still too cold for cultivating the tomato plants outdoor, I have sowed the seeds in tiny pots which now sit on my veranda until the temperature gets much warmer, around the twenties. 

I have not sowed any seeds from last year’s harvest of cherry tomatoes. This was because I was too lazy to do any seeding and thus, no seeds this year. However, if I am lucky, the cherry tomato seeds from last year were naturally dispersed onto the vegetable patch and the seedlings will show itself in late spring, without me having to do anything. That was what happened last summer: the previous owner’s bountiful tomato plants popped out without warning, and we reaped the fruits. 

This is the first time I am preparing the vegetable bed for tomato seeds. It seems that planting tomato seeds is not rocket scientist. Despite not being endowed with a green thumb, I hope to see some baby leaves in three weeks’ time. Positive news coming in three weeks…fingers crossed. 

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