Friday, September 30, 2011

SEEDLINGS AND SOIL


Nasturtiums all over the garden

I think it is time for some more green tips.

The most important thing in any garden it the quality of your soil.

In order to make good soil you need 3 things, namely cow/horse manure or wormy cast (more about this just now) soil and sand, one part of each, mix well and use. This is great for planting seedlings and replanting just about everything.

If you however want the perfect soil, start a worm farm or two.

The worm farm, as I think I said before, is not exactly a farm full of worms, but something the size of a bath tub or big drum. You feed all you leftover kitchen waste (accept for onions and citrus) to the worms. The worms do not actually eat the leftovers, but that is another story, the fact is the whole process that happens on this “farm” creates perfect soil. Okay, now you have a tub full of worms and perfect soil, how to separate the soil from the worms? Put down a plastic sheet, now you take the soil (with worms and all) from the worm farm and put it in piles on the plastic. The earthworms hate the sun, so they will always go the bottom of the pile. You just harvest the soil from the top and put the worms back in the farm.


I do understand that you can also buy a ready to use worm farm on the internet - 
http://www.worm-farm.co.za/?gclid=CM76yoq3xasCFYUKfAodyXGn2w

The idea is then to replace the manure in your potting soil with this wormy cast. You can also boost your plants by throwing a handful (or so, depending on the size of the plant) around any plant and then watering it.

I feel generous, so here are a few more -

Even wondered exactly how deep or shallow to plant your seeds? Here is a very good guide line; the size of the seed + ½ will be the right dept.



Some of the first seedling

Some plants do well when planted directly into the soil and others grow better if you make seedlings first. Carrots are a bit of a headache, the seeds are very small, so it should be better to make seedlings first, but they do not transplant well, so I came up with the following plan – you plant the seeds in old egg containers and when the seedling are a bit bigger you plant them box and all.  This also helps to space them better otherwise you end up with clusters of odd shaped carrots. Just remember to make holes at the bottom of the cardboard. I am either going to have an overdose of carrots or none at all, will have to wait and see, but I think it will work.


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