Monday, May 5, 2014

Soggy Spring

Last year, I planted my first round of peas in February, due to some unusually mild weather. This year, we're having a more typical season... it's been raining quite a lot, and the temperatures have been cool. I planted peas a couple of weeks ago, with my fingers crossed that it wasn't too early. It was. The soil is still cool and I've *just* started to see a few sprouts peeking out of the ground. Ditto for the green beans, both of which usually amaze me with how fast they germinate. Not so this year, sadly. On the news this morning, they said that our normal rainfall total for the month of May is 1.94 inches... and we reached that yesterday, only 4 days in. Sorry, California- for as dry as you are, we're a bit soaked. I'd send it your way, if I could.

This guy doesn't mind the extra rain.

All of that time in the cold wet ground is not good for seeds, at all. Concerned that they might be rotting, I poked around at the end of a row, until I found one. Not even a hint of a root, after two weeks in- that really surprised me! So, I looked even closer, and I found a few millipedes around the place that I dug this one from. Millipedes are usually a gardener's friend; they break down decaying plant matter and rarely bother healthy plants. This time, though, they were attracted to my waterlogged peas and have started munching on them. Inconvenient, yes, but not the end of the world. I'll pick up another packet of seeds at the feed store later this week, and start over when the forecast calls for some warmer weather.

We did have two beautiful days last week, where the temps were in the high 70s during the day. That sure was a nice change of pace. This week, though, we're back to cool and wet- the highest we're going to see is 65 or so, and the lows at night are still in the mid-40s. Even with the raised beds, that's still just too chilly for most of my summer plants to handle. So, what's a gal to do, you ask? What I should have done in the first place, which is plant my cool weather seeds. I planted kale, chard, carrots, kohlrabi and the rat's tail radishes at the beginning of this weekend. They should do just fine while the weather works itself out.

What has your spring been like? I'd love to know what you've planted so far.

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