And sow it begins…

Saturday 9 January was officially the first growing day of the year for me. I absolutely love growing from seed, so it is always a joy to put the first seeds of the year into compost and imagine what they will turn in to.

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My late dad’s propagator

It’s too early to plant most things, but January is definitely the time to start off peppers and chillies chez snail. So, Mr Snail retrieved the propagator from the loft. It was my dad’s and I’m sure that had he still been with us he would have appreciated the fact that it is still in use. I dug out the ethically -produced coir pots that I sourced last year plus a few small plastic pots and sorted through my seed collection. Then I made some new plant labels by cutting up some old plastic milk bottles that I have been saving for just this job.

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A lot of frozen chillies

The fantastic conditions in the limery meant that the 2015 chilli crop was HUGE. We have pots and pots of hot sweet chilli sauce and in the freezer I have a 2 litre tub completely full of whole chillies. So, in 2016, I plan only to grow one variety – my favourite – Lemon Drop. Of course some of the plants from last year may survive the winter (sometimes they do, sometimes they don’t) and so we may have more than this, but frankly, we won’t need them.

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Seeds sown

I have focused instead this year on sweet peppers. I had some seeds left over from last year for two varieties: Kaibi and Nova. The former did well in 2015, but we got very poor germination from the latter. Anyway, I have planted all the left-over seeds and we shall see. In addition I have one variety – Sheepsnose – from Garden Organic’s Heritage Seed Library, and I have decided to try out two new varieties from Tamar Organics: Yolo’s Wonder and Corno di Torro Rosso. I’m hoping to identify varieties that like the conditions we can provide so that I know what to focus on in future years.

Few other crops benefit from being planted this early in the year, but I did sow a few lettuce seeds to grow indoors… the last of our 2015 lettuce was consumed by slugs in early December. Now I await germination… I can hardly wait to see those green shoots.

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11 Comments

  1. Gosh, what an early start to your growing season! The limery really doest make a huge difference to the length of time you can grow, doesn’t it?

    Reply
    • I have discovered, over the years, that the earlier the better as regards peppers and chillies… they seem to benefit from the longest growing season possible and I used to plant them in January even in the greenhouse days…now, though, I have the luxury of not having to find places on all the window sills in the house for them! I really do love the limery!!

      Reply
  2. Ooh I love this and I think you might have inspired my inner excitement with gardening again. Last year when I moved here u wasn’t able to grow much

    Reply
  3. Agh I hit send by mistake. :/

    Reply
  4. However this year I have a larger area inside the kitchen to grow things. I think I have a propagator too here somewhere.

    Reply
  5. It’s a joy planting seeds, isn’t it? It’s nice to see you using your dad’s propagator, too. I know that must feel wonderful.

    I’ve just read an extensive article on permaculture (Wikipedia) and now realize you’re an expert. I’m really intrigued.

    Reply
  6. So early!! But, hey, that’s what limeries are for, right? It’s all very exciting (as the snow falls here).

    Reply
  7. You’ll be the envy of the internet with your own indoor growing advantage. It’s so warm out here I could almost start now but I know we will have another big freeze before it’s over.

    Reply
  8. Oooh, is it chili time again already? You really did have a bumper crop last year… That Limery of yours is certainly earning its keep! Happy planting 😀

    Reply

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