(I wrote this last year when I first set out plants. Note this year I planted them all at once, not just a timid few. Also, I set them in the ground a full two weeks earlier this year. I was disappointed last year to get such a late start with tomatoes, plus I’ve learned this region is milder than I thought. I still act like I’m gardening in Indiana.)
March 21, 2010
What I planted a month ago, tiny seeds hopefully placed in little cells-full of soil while snow still stood on the ground, I actually put in the ground today. Call me prudent, call me a whimp, but I didn’t plant all them all. Mostly planted lettuce but also some bok choi and cabbage. I wanted to set these out and make sure they would be o.k. What was I worried about? That it would get too cold? That winter-starved, newly emerged from hibernation animals would gobble them up? Honestly, I’ve got to stop holding back, garden-wise, and go for broke.
I started the process a couple days before I set them out. Prior to planting inside-grown plants outside the informed gardener hardens them off. That means setting ’em outside in a protected place for a short time one day, then longer the next day and with less shade, then finally overnight and through a day.
One reason I love growing plants is because it teaches about and mirrors life. Like a young plant, I’m sometimes not good at sudden changes either. I prefer giving myself time to adjust to a new idea or plan or procedure. Let me put it on the edge of my brain, shaded from the intense heat of my worries. Then I’ll move it toward the center of my thinking, testing my worries, weighing pros and cons. Finally, I can plant the idea in my hands, my feet, my living.