Once again I am trying to grow plants from seeds for our garden. I do this each year, and many times am not successful. My son really likes to pick out seeds from the store and often has grandiose ideas of what we should grow. To put it in perspective, I have a 4' x 4' raised bed for veggies. I have about the same sized herb garden that doesn't get enough sun. Andrew asked if we could grow corn this year...so that we could have a corn maze. (Imagine Amish country corn fields and laugh.) I nixed the corn idea because of space considerations. Instead he picked out carrot seeds, green beans, and cucumbers. We will also grow tomatoes, but I usually buy established plants.
I use a lot of basil and prefer to grow it myself rather than buying it in the store. I usually buy half a dozen basil plants and grow them in both the herb bed and the veggie bed. This year I decided to try growing the basil plants from seed instead. So far the seedlings are doing well. I'm hoping that they survive long enough in their little peat pots until I can plant them in the ground. It is spring here in the mid-Atlantic region of the US and snow is forecast for tomorrow, April 1st. It is the winter that will never end!! Eventually it will warm up here and planting season will start.
I have two full trays of little basil plant seedlings, which is a lot. I am hoping that they do in fact grow into nice sized plants by the end of May. A good friend gave me a great end-of-year teacher gift idea and the basil plants are part of it. If they aren't large enough, then I'll buy basil plants along with kitchen towels to wrap around their pots with a recipe for pesto sauce. I thought it was a cute idea, and something that is useful. (Of course I presume one gives an end-of-year teacher gifts??! I don't know protocol yet for preschool since it's our first year!)
In digging through some of my gardening things I found a bag of seeds from last year, along with a few seed packets from a few years ago. I decided to try starting some other seeds along with the basil. (The veggie seeds we bought this year advise against sowing seeds indoors, so they will all be started outside in the ground once frost isn't a risk.) I found tomato seeds from three years ago--roma tomatoes--that are actually growing! I also planted some dill and cilantro seeds. I love cilantro, but every year a wild animal eats my cilantro plants, so I may just grow this herb indoors from now on. In the photo above, on the window sill, are some sunflowers growing too, in little cups. Andrew planted four more sunflower seeds yesterday with me, and they are the ones covered in plastic in the photo. Sunflowers are one of my favorite flowers and every year I plant some and every year they are eaten by wild beasts and/or birds. I even bought an established sunflower plant last year and our neighborhood ground hog ate the top of of the plant, along with dahlias and gourds. This year I may have to fence in the garden, as much as I hate how it will look. I am hoping to outwit the animals and actually have some sunflowers this year.