Spring Is Almost Here
Spring is almost here to bring on new life, sun and adventures. Let's get ready to grow our own food. This week we are discussing the importance of Heirloom seeds. It's time to start your garden.
WHAT ARE HEIRLOOM SEEDS?
Heirloom seeds come from open-pollinated plants that pass on similar characteristics and traits from the parent plant to the child plant. Remember, heirloom refers to the heritage of a plant. Heirlooms are seed varieties that can be saved and planted year after year. Heirlooms are never hybrids or GMOs. Hybrids and GMO seeds do no reproduce plant life because the seeds are sterile.
THE BENEFITS OF HEIRLOOM SEEDS
~ Heirloom seeds come from the past plant parents and can be old and have an interesting history.
~ They reproduce seeds to be planted year after year.
~ Guaranteed Non-GMO and they also can be Organic (Seeds grown without synthetic pesticides, herbicides and synthetic fertilizers.)
LINKS TO SUGGESTED HEIRLOOM SEEDS COMPANIES
TIPS FOR GROWING HEIRLOOMS
Here are a few tips to ensure your success with growing heirloom seeds.
Tip #1: Locate online garden stores or order through a catalog. You may find a better selection of seeds through catalogs.
Tip #2: For the best varieties on sale, purchase seeds during the months of January and February because you may not be able to find them in the later months of April or May.
Tip #3: Read the Farmers' Almanac to find the growing season and any special notes about climate in your area.
Do you have a backyard? If you do not have a backyard to start a garden, search for a community garden in your area.
HOW TO START A GARDEN
Locate an area for your garden
Locate an area that has the basic needs to plant your future bounty – Fertile soil, Water and Sunlight.
Test your soil
Locate the nearest Cooperative Extension System. They may be able to send you a soil kit to get tested. They can give advice on how to amend your soil like what kind of fertilizers, additives and compost to use to have rich soil.
Choose an area that has good soil quality, close to your water source, and an area that gets 6-8 hours of sunlight. However, you want to make sure to read the instructions of the seed for placement. You don't want to place a plant in full sun if it can not handle the heat. Prepare the area by removing grass, weeds and rocks from the area. If you choose it cover your garden bed space, you have several options – you can cover the space with black tarp and remove the tarp before planting, or you can use newspaper or cardboard . This method is preferred if you are starting garden beds in the Fall to be ready Spring.
The cardboard and newspaper smother any weeds, while decomposing and providing ground cover.
Select Your Seeds
Now is time to select what you want to grow. Remove the Tarp and plant into the soil or you can cut holes in the cardboard and newspaper and plant directly into the soil beneath it, to maintain ground cover.
Skill or Drill: Plant Your Seeds
Once your garden space is weed free, it’s time to start planting.
Dig the holes for the specific plants that are ready to be placed in the ground, or plant your seeds.
When starting a new garden from scratch, think about where you can plant companion plants to attract pollinators and repel pests.
Save $8 as your budget allows. Save something. Here is a 52 Week Money Challenge Printable Spreadsheet
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