I organized the basement propagation center this weekend — it’s fabulous! I took one of the five-shelf utility units from Patrick’s storage unit, bought some cheap shop lights and grow-light tubes, and I now have four shelves set up with lights. Last year, I bought a couple of heat mats to help with germination, since it’s cool in my basement, and I have them set up on another short utility shelf unit. It’s like a real potting bench down there — space to store flats and cells, space for the bucket of potting mix, space to start seeds. It’s organized and sweet and I’m so thrilled to be planting things again.
So Saturday I started six varieties of tomatoes (plus two yellow cherry tomatoes for my friend Wendy, because her kids liked them so much last summer), and a flat of peppers — three cells each of six kinds of tomatoes. Oh, and Italian eggplant — which needed some help from the wall-o-waters last year, but I got a bunch of nice eggplants late in the summer.
Tomorrow a nice woman is coming with a dumptruck load of compost — twice as much as I ordered last year — so I’ll be able to continue filling the raised beds, and there should be enough for the flower beds as well. I’m going to try planting spinach and some greens right away — there’s actually some spinach that overwintered! I guess next year I’ll try to get serious about fall planting; this fall I wasn’t exactly on the ball, but mostly it just never occurred to me that things would survive being frozen.
I feel very Martha about my little basement shelves with their organized places to put things, and I’m looking forward to walking down there in the morning and seeing flat after flat of hopeful little seedlings.