Red Bucket Farm is an urban farm on a quarter acre property in an average residential neighborhood. We are located in Wisconsin, USDA Zone 5. We focus on chickens, bees, orchard fruit, and raised garden beds for fruits and veggies. We hope to reduce our footprint on the planet by growing some of our food, reducing our use of fossil fuels, and gardening with sustainable practices. Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Difficult Seed Germination

This morning I placed three jelly jars into my refrigerator. Usually my canning jars contain homemade jam, jelly, or even pesto. But this morning my jars contain a mixture of compost and seeds. Don't worry---I labeled carefully!

Some seeds are notoriously difficult to germinate and require extra care. For example, basil and parsley require long germination times and warm root zones. I generally start to germinate them around Christmas for planting in the spring.

Today's project involves lavender, purple coneflower, and purple prairie clover---all attractive to native pollinators. These three seed varieties require a period of cold prior to germination. I could place them in the ground outside and wait for winter to do its work, but since these varieties are fussy, I decided to germinate them indoors. The seeds will "winter" in the refrigerator for a month or so. Then I'll place the soil-and-seed mixture into small pots where they will germinate under lights and be warmed by a seedling mat beneath their roots. Hopefully, all this tender loving care will produce a few viable plants.

What else is in my fridge? Mason bees. Yup. They live there all winter. But that's another blog post for another day. Cheers!

No comments:

Post a Comment