Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Getting Ready to Garden

We got some distressing news while watching the local news tonight--3 dreaded words were uttered by the weatherman: Winter Storm Watch! Starting tomorrow evening (yes, the first day of spring) and extending all the way till Friday evening, we may see up to half a foot of snow.

OK, enough of that depressing crap, because today it was in the mid-40's and sunny, a perfectly lovely day for the middle of March in Minnesota.

I'm starting to get excited about planning my vegetable garden for this year. I'm planning to add another 12 X 12 raised bed in order to plant more varieties of vegetables. So as long as I was planning that, I went ahead and placed my on-line seed order from the Seed Savers Exchange 2008 catalog.

Their seeds are a little more expensive than at my local stores, but they're local (Decorah, Iowa) and I'm planning to try starting some extra plants and see if I can sell them reasonably to some of my co-workers. I've already got my little "seedling greenhouse" kit and some potting mix, so next week once my seeds arrive, I'll be starting broccoli, tomatoes, cucumbers, and peppers.

Penny inspects and approves my gardening supplies.

I also want to try planting the "garbage can potatoes" that Robin at Bumblebee posted about last summer. I sent Robin a quick e-mail to see if there might be a good time to call her and ask more questions about this project, and it turned out that she needed a diversion from what she was working on and it was a perfect time for her to talk a while. We had a fun chat about vegetable gardening, dogs, and other things. I hope someday we will be able to meet in person, but on the phone she sounded exactly as I imagined she would.

I did pick up this neat tool for weeding a few weeks ago.
Unfortunately, it's not self-propelled, but hopefully it will make my weeding job less strenuous and eliminate some of the time spent down on my knees.

But what I'm really happy about are my new purple polka-dotted boots!
Aren't they cute? It's a good thing my garden is behind the house. At least I won't have to worry about people seeing me traipsing around the backyard in my PJs and wearing these boots on my early morning trips to the garden and bird-feeder filling.

I also ordered my new compost tumbler this afternoon, so I'm almost ready for gardening season when it finally does arrive. Now I just have to get that raised bed assembled and call for a truckload of black dirt to fill it with, plus 3 garbage cans for potatoes. (And there you have it, Robin.....I think I'm almost at that $64 tomato level!)


barefoot gardener said...

I gotta say, I love my Garden Claw. I even did a review on it last year. That thing kicks butt for weeding!

I look forward to hearing about all your gardening fun!

RuthieJ said...

Hi Barefoot,
Thanks for the endorsement. I'll have to check your archives for the review. I picked mine up at Fleet Farm ON SALE! Hopefully I will be more proactive with my weeding chores now that I've got a better tool.

Jayne said...

Oh, I do hope that we'll be spared a late freeze like last year. Everything is starting to bud out like crazy here. The pears are in full bloom now. I am looking forward to seeing that garden Ruthie! LOVE the boots!

Beth said...

Thanks for the great optimistic post. I'm planning a raised garden this year, too, so I'll be interested to keep up with your endeavor. My "spot" is still under four feet of snow so I can't do much with it yet, but I can dream.

RuthieJ said...

Hi Jayne,
The long-range forecast doesn't show any really cold temps, so even if we do get snow, it shouldn't last too long (I hope).

Hi Beth,
Are you Zone 3 or 4?
Good luck with your raised bed garden. I have mine divided up into 9 sections and will be able to raise lots of different veggies this year by adding another raised bed.
Hope your spring arrives soon!

Ruth said...

I love your boots!!! They would clash with my red flannel PJs that I wear to my feeders ;-)
I got a gardening book from the library last night. It is fun to plan. Hope you don't get the storm, because we will get it next.

fiona said...

those are FAB wellies!!!!

good luck with your gardening, ruthie.. I love the planning and preparation bit, too.

ruth, I also garden in my PJs.. I like to go up on the roof first thing with my mug of tea :-)

Richard said...

Love the boots...go right along with your personality. Now all you need is purple polka dot gloves and hat to match.

Marsha said...

Look forward to hearing about the gardening as spring and summer progress! You will be one stylish gardener in those boots.

I'm seeing purple here too :-(

Anonymous said...

yeah... i'm in denial over the snow on the first day of spring... so i bought seeds at the grocery store today!

Mel said...

Cool boots!

Cathy said...

I don't get seed catalogs anymore:0(

It's so nice to see your garden paraphernalia. Particularly those GREAT boots!

RuthieJ said...

Hi Ruth,
I think they had some of the boots in plain colors also, but for some strange reason I'm always drawn to the wild designs!
P.S. The weatherman just said we're getting the storm. I'm sorry! :-(

Thanks Steph! I like them so well I might have to pick up another pair--maybe with flowers on them.
I'm looking forward to warm mornings when I can go out to the garden with a cup of tea and wearing my PJs.

Hi Richard,
There's my accessory challenge for this summer! ;-)

Hi Marsha,
I hope it's a good spring and summer for gardening too.
(And hopefully this will be our last winter storm for the season!)

Yea, Jennifer! What seeds did you buy? Just vegetables or flowers too?

Thanks Mel! It's nice to be an age where I can wear stuff like this and instead of being "weird" I now qualify as "eccentric!"

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I am lovin those boots girl. You will be stylin' in the garden this year.

Don't worry about the snow. It won't last long.

Mary said...


Your tools leave me breathless but those boots knock my socks off!


I really like them!


Meggie said...

Hey Ruthie: Sorry I've been away so long...LOVE the purple boots!! Sooo cool!

Larry said...

Holy Cow-those are some seriously bold boots!Have fun with them!