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Monday last day to order transplants; Special on hands-on

direct seeding tutorial through mid-June

Plant order deadline Monday

If you plan to buy transplants from M R Gardens this year, please be sure to take advantage of the Pre-season Prep service, as I can't guarantee that all varieties will be available unless you order them ahead of time. Plants should be ready for you to transplant into your garden prior to Mother's Day—the exact date varies each year depending on the weather.

 

The order deadline is Monday, March 18, and if you haven't received your plant list yet, please email gardens@wncmretc.com or call me at 828.333.4151. Read more about the service in last week's newsletter and see descriptions and photos of a few of the heirloom peppers and tomatoes on my website.

Not having much luck with direct seeding?

If your answer is "yes"—don't worry, you're not alone. I've heard frequent concerns about direct seeding, which is when seeds are planted straight into the soil as opposed to using starts from a nursery. An afternoon of garden coaching might help.

 

Successful direct seeding requires thought, preparation and precision. Each crop has its own requirements for seed depth, spacing, temperature and moisture. And, as with everything in gardening, your success depends on the quality of your soil, which can be improved with proper organic techniques.

 

I can best assess the tilth of your soil (i.e the structure) and give tips for improvement by meeting with you in person at your garden. You also have the option of a seeding lesson on-site at M R Gardens. It's much easier to achieve achieve good tilth if you know what it looks like. You can see and feel healthy soil in beds now in their fifth year. (With my gardening methods, the typical time period for creating optimal soil health is three or more years, but you can produce high quality vegetables in just a few months after setting up a brand new bed.)

 

From now until June 14, I've dropped the low end of my sliding scale to $12 an hour for customers seeking tutorials on direct seeding. Some seeds may be included in the price depending on which crops you request.

 

If you want to plant spring crops such as mixed salad, other greens, peas, potatoes, bunching onions, cilantro, parsnips, turnips, or radishes, please make an appointment prior to April 15. Some frost-hardy crops such as carrots and beets sprout more quickly when the soil has warmed to 70F, so we can wait until late April or later to seed them. For summer crops such as squash, cucumbers, melons, beans, okra, sweet corn and popcorn, we can make an appointment to seed between May 13 and June 14.

 

Please contact me at 828.333.4151 or gardens@wncmretc.com.

To transplant or to direct seed

You may be wondering, is it better to sow seeds directly into the soil and or is it better to transplant seedlings? While a lot of crops dictate the answer to this question (for instance, you'd only direct seed a carrot and only transplant a pepper), you have a choice with some crops such as greens, most culinary herbs, many beneficial flowers and Cucuberits (the squash, melon, and cucumber family). They typically do just as well either way—although Cucuberits can be finicky transplanters.

 

There are pros and cons to transplanting from both a sustainability standpoint and a plant quality standpoint. My growing style has been greatly influenced by a couple of my early farmer-teachers who were trained in Ecology Action's Grow Biointensive method. Students of the Biointensive method transplant most crops—even beets!—in part to save space in the garden. Read the rest of the article on my website.

Why I garden: My growing list

I just added one more reason to my growing list of reasons why I garden: After a hard day's work, I love to sit on my deck and admire the work I completed. In conversations with you, I realized I am not alone! This is something gardeners share in common. What other reasons do you garden? I'd love to hear from you on my page: https://www.facebook.com/mretcetera.gardens.

Contact Megan at M R Gardens

M R Gardens is on the outskirts of Oakley in Asheville, NC

gardens@wncmretc.com

828.333.4151

Blog: http://mretcllc-mrgardens.blogspot.com/

On Facebook: M R Gardens


In this issue:

Plant order deadline Monday

Not having much luck with direct seeding?

To transplant or to direct seed

Why I garden: My growing list

Contact Megan at M R Gardens

About the grower

Want to get rid of your pots from last season?

Free raspberry crowns!

Send this to a Friend

Earn a free plant for every one of your referrals who purchase a plant from M R Gardens. Just tell your friend to let Megan know they heard about M R Gardens from you!

About the grower

Click here to read about my divese background in horticulture, sustainable agriculture and experiential education.

Want to get rid of your pots from last season?

 

I will gladly reuse your trays, 4-cell containers, and 3-in., 4-in. and 5-in. pots.


Please be sure to wash them with dishwashing soap thoroughly before you give them to me. This pre-wash decreases time spent sanitizing the containers and ensures that plant disease does not spread to my nursery. I greatly appreciate you helping to keep down labor costs associated with washing pots so that I can continue to offer a sliding scale. Contact me at gardens@wncmretc.com to let me know what sizes of pots you have.

Free raspberry crowns!

A friend (and talented gardener) helped me start a part of my raspberry


patch with a division from hers four years ago, and I want to continue to pass on the love. If you'd like free crowns, please let me know right away as I'll be thinning out my patch next week. You'll need to plant them as soon as you get them (or pot them in containers until you can plant them) or they will dry out.

M R et cetera, LLC • 437 Onteora Blvd. • Asheville, NC 28803
http://www.wncmretc.com
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