Today, I was greeted at the Post Office with one small and one very large package of seed packets. All seeds are accounted for aside from our herb seed order. The damn hippies are the last to get it together. (I should know.)
So, without further ado, today’s plantings:
In the comments from yesterday’s post, joxum asked about other peppers we are planting. I replied with two more varieties, which was an incomplete list. Today I received packets of Purple Beauty Peppers, a pack of Cayenne, two packs of Early Jalapeño, and two of Cal Wonders.
As their name indicates, the Purple beauty Peppers are indeed purple. They are a rather popular variety in this area because they are a color other than green, and ripen at a fairly rapid rate, which is helpful in this mild climate. Other colored sweet peppers, such as yellow, orange and red, take a long time to turn color (they start out green), and often the first frost has hit before one can harvest much of a crop. One might as well just grow cal Wonders, the supermarket variety of green pepper. Numbers: Purple Beauties, 2 trays of 6-packs; Cayenne, 1 tray of 6-packs; Jalepeño, 2 trays of 6-packs; and Cal Wonders, 2 trays of 6-packs. All of these plants will be transferred into 4-inch pots for sale purposes.
I also planted some tomatoes: Cherokee Purple, Sun Gold Cherry and Roma. The Cherokee Purples are an heirloom tomato, big, juicy and flavorful. In fact, they are so big and juicy that they sometimes collapse under their own weight. And, as their name indicates, they are purple in color with green crowns. They also ripen a bit earlier than other heirlooms, which again, is a plus in this region. Sun Gold cherry tomatoes are quite simply the best-tasting cherry every hybridized. And Romas… well, what would Italian cooking be without Roma tomatoes? Numbers: Cherokee Purple, 1 tray open-seeded; Sun Gold, 2 trays open-seeded; and Roma, 1 tray open-seeded. This represents about 100 plants. By open-seeded, I mean that I spread the seeds out onto a 10” x 20” x 2” tray full of soil and covered them. When the plants get about 7” tall and with three sets of leaves on them, I will transplant them by burying the plant up to its uppermost set of leaves into gallon cans for sale. The bottom sets of leaves will change into roots, making for a healthier, larger transplant into gardens.
I also planted 2 6-pack trays of tomatillos, a cousin to the tomato. No self-respecting salsa recipe should be without them.
Finally, I put up 5 trays of 6-packs of Dark Purple Opal Basil. The seeds are pretty dang small, so some of the cells are going to have more than one plants growing, yet these plants will also be transplanted into 4” pots at a later date, again, for sale purposes.
Out of the 12 bags of soil I started with, I have 4 and one-half left. While I probably still have about 90 trays of 6-packs full of dirt and ready to go, with all of the transplanting I will be doing in a few weeks, I can tell that I am going to have to buy considerably more soil. I will most likely try to supplement the soil in the larger pots with our compost, yet I’d guess I’m looking at another $100 in soil, which I’m not too crazy about. It’s going to eat into our ROI. I’d better get to the poker tables for some pay dirt!