Every day there’s a surprise in my gardening universe. This week it was one for my husband, who was greeted by a lovely display of plastic milk containers in my front (and back) yard gardens.
Here’s the background:
As I was paying for my herbs and summer vegetables at the garden center, an older woman recommended using milk cartons to protect my vegetables. She said even if there wasn’t a frost, a dip below 45 degrees could shock my plants into an unhappy state. It made sense to me and since I was jumping the gun a bit, deviating slightly from the Postage Stamp Gardening book and Duane’s opinion that there’s “no need to rush” the warm weather crops, which need consistently warm days. So I went searching for gallon sized milk cartons from my neighbors before recycle day and then cut off their bottoms. I confidently placed them overtop my newly planted babies and anticipated that I’d soon need to deal with a baffled husband.
True to form, my spouse greeted me with a perplexed “what’s going on here?”, suspecting that this would be a permanent curb-appeal killing addition to our home. I told him to think of the gallon sized jugs as sleeping bags for my plants, keeping my delicate little seedlings cozily tucked in for the night, safe and sound, protected from unexpected dips in temperature. I assured him that it would only be until the morning, when they’d shed their blankets and I’d remove their makeshift solariums. And I stressed that it would save us money since I’d need to buy plants all over again if the little sproutlets died from exposure to the cold weather. He backed off. And since the cold weather seems to be done, those jugs will soon become a memory.
I was overzealous this week in my planting and decided to fill in some empty and sparse spots with warmer weather vegetables. As it turns out, as I suspected, there are a few minimal growth zones in my garden. Since it appears that either I forgot to plant in a few spots or the birds stole my seeds, I thought I should fill in with a few zucchini, yellow squash, cucumbers and tomato plants.
This is quite interesting, this garden thing. It’s as addictive as checking my blackberry. More on that topic next week.