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In the Garden: Ten Weeks Before (average) Last Frost

This is certainly the most exciting time of the year for a gardener. There are many seedlings to start indoors and as our soils become workable, there are seeds to sow outdoors. With the unusual state of affairs in March, 2020, you might not feel prepared even as you may have more time on your hands. No worries! We are here to help.

Indoor seed starting takes some space and a few supplies. You will need seed starting mix (try Ace Hardware), supplemental lighting, flats (leftover watertight clamshells are great, the type that greens mix is sold in at the grocery store), and seed. Regarding light, our days are not long enough nor is the light source strong enough for seed starting. If you try to use a bright window, the likelihood is you will just have spindly, weak starts. If you can set up a system with a light source about 2-4 inches above your seedlings then you will be good to go. Make sure that the light source is not hot. See example below.

Seeds to start within the next two weeks:

Indoors: tomatoes, peppers, eggplant, celery, cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, kale, and lettuce. Oh, and, if you cannot set up a germination station indoors, do not despair; cauliflower, broccoli, cabbage, kale and lettuce can be direct seeded outdoors. Just, not quite yet!

Outdoors: This is a little trickier. Throughout the Bitterroot Valley we have many microclimates. A good rule of thumb is that once you can work your soil (not frozen, not muddy) then you can direct seed: radish, lettuce, peas, fava beans (no other beans please), parsnip and spinach.

If you should have specific questions then please send an email. Additionally, O'Hara Commons has a very well stocked seed library with locally grown garden seeds. Let us know what you need and we can arrange for a minimal human contact seed pick up!

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