Sunday, January 06, 2008

The January Seed Itch

Have you got it too? Do you have a burning desire to sow seeds in potting mix and then revel in the exhilaration of small green things sprouting? Do you want to assemble a colorful mix of pansies in a shiny new ceramic pot? I'm trying to restrain myself, but the January Seed Itch has definitely taken hold.

The peppers, tomatoes, herbs, lemongrass and orchid shelf of the indoor basement-garden:


I just finished putting away the Christmas decorations and I resolve to replace them with something symbolic of an impending spring. Yes, I'm inviting spring to my home with centerpieces and pastel ribbons. I'll be searching out the Michael's craft store for a replacement for the silk poinsettia arrangement. RLM will find that pretty thrilling, I'm sure.

If you are looking for a wide variety of herbs, the Richters Seed Catalogue is pretty spectacular. It contains everything from Ephedra sinica (with small print reminding us that sale of purified ephedrine is illegal, but growing Ephedra is NOT) to our local native plant, the "ratroot" (Acorus calamus) which is touted for treatment of "flatulent colic" and fleas. I counted no less than 31 different mint varieties sold as seed or plants. This includes "Mojito Mint", apparently liberated from Cuba in 2006 by Toronto's "mojito enthusiast" Catherine Nasmith. Did anyone tell Fidel about this? Should the American public be drinking communist mint? Hmmm.

Here is an amaryllis plant given to me by a colleague at the office. Thanks, Jeff!
I've started a few annuals and perennial seeds in pots and enclosed them in ziploc baggies. I spray the planted pots with some "no damp" solution, to prevent the seedlings from rotting and dying.

If I am lucky, I won't end up with pots that look like this -- a fabulous example of lush moss with no seedlings to be found:

I hope you have luck in seed-starting. Just remember to avoid starting fast-growing or large plants too soon. I say that from frequent and apparently fruitless past personal "learning experiences".

11 comments:

Carol said...

Oh, yes, I have the January seed itch. I get it just about the time I put away the Christmas decorations. And that is good advice to not sow seed for fast growing annuals too soon. I know that from experience, too!

Carol, May Dreams Gardens

Karen said...

Hi, I saw your comment on my blog. I hope what I said about "sensing disapproval" was okay. You don't want to know how hard I struggled with the wording! I probably still got it wrong, but you would have let me know if you were offended, right?

Saskboy said...

I think your blog is an excellent example of a Canadian Blog, and so I nominated you for a Canadian Blog Award here. You'd probably be a contender for best Photo Blog too.

kate said...

Yes, that seed-starting itch has hit. I am hoping that I can hang on and not start any seeds before it's time. I have some plants in bloom and they remind me that soon spring will be here! I laughed when I saw your moss pic ...

mightymatt1313 said...

I have some seeds in my greenhouse that I am ready to plant.

Cicero Sings said...

My sister phoned yesterday to say I can have her portable greenhouse, grow lights and timer ... to be picked up next time we can make it her way (she lives in Sechelt). We'll get that before spring ... so I can get some seedlings for the garden started .... for those things that take longer than our growing season allows! (My sister is quite weak ... big medical problems ... on TPN ... not nice. She's lucky to be alive but some days are not good. She used the set up for her orchids but the whole process is too much for her now.)

I've also given you an award on my blog today ... hope you don't mind ... you don't have to carry it on.

CresceNet said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Cicero Sings said...

Hey, I found about you from Leah ... I don't know what the connection is there ... and now I find out you know Mr. Miles ... or his family. Wow! What a small world indeed!

quu said...

Happy New Year! :)I sure do have a seed itch - luckily I can't sow anything yet, because sun sets so early - hour or two before mid day.

But I promise to let my seed itch run free on march!

Did Kona made any New years promises? ;)

Ottawa Gardener said...

I admit. I have January seed itch but right now I am trying to confine it to thinking about what to plant.

Mrs. Miles said...

You are SO ambitious... LOL - about as 'growy' as I get is to buy a $1.88 special 4 inch pot of iris... and even at that I feel brave. Any other living plants in our home are orchids which are horribly abused and survive anyway ... and one neat plant that Mr. Miles got from his principal ... its some sort of an african violet looking thing from Ecuador (her orchid club brought it back) ... it lives in a terrarium and it has the neatest florescent bloom once in a while... and the leaves sort of SPARKLE? I'll have to take a pic for you sometime.

I enjoy visiting you and share with Mr. once in a while! Thanks for sharing!

~ Mrs.