April 5, 2015

Those Darn Cats Ate My Plants

I prepared a complex, very thorough garden plan for this year, complete with planting, transplanting, and harvest charts. Like a dutiful gardener, I got seeds started indoors for those plants needing the longest time growing before transplant. They were looking quite healthy and I was pleased with a 75% germination rate (no grow light or heat mat). The plants were due to head down to the greenhouse now that the cellar has warmed up, but just before I could get them downstairs, I forgot to shut my office door and just like that, nearly all were destroyed by my cats.

Somehow, they are able to jump up on the tray without knocking it over, then they systematically ate the leaves and a few full plants. Several were found on the floor.

Rather than buy $20 in pods, I grabbed some cheap peat inserts at Fleet Farm. It's messier and may be harder to control moisture, but it's a good lesson for me to be more careful with seedlings!

My next batch of seeds starts inside around April 15-20, mainly cucumbers, radicchio, and summer squash, just in case we have terrible weather through the end of the month. I may be able to get the first batch of greens outside directly, but this is my backup plan. My currently growing tray includes bell peppers, sunflowers, wildflowers, and butterfly plants (milkweed).

The rest of my plants are to be directly sowed outside or were ordered as live plants: three varieties of tomatoes, mesclun mix, potatoes, ornamental corn, and garlic (planted last fall). My daughter is bummed we're not growing pumpkins and gourds this year but I promised her we can grow one or two pumpkin plants next year where the corn is going this year.

I wish we had a huge flat yard. I'd let my kiddo have a whole row of pumpkins.

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