New Experiences

April 17, 2009

HARDENING OFF

I finally tallied up all my seedlings and, wow, there are a lot!  I’ve got about 18 trays of seedlings (mostly tomatoes for my plant sale) and I gotta say that they are a pain to water indoors.  Usually I like to water them from the bottom, i.e., fill up the tray with water and let the seedlings soak in it for 5 minutes.  With so many trays, I really needed to get them all lined up to water them in order:

Easter weekend was really busy with super weather.  To take advantage of it, I toted my 600+ seedlings outdoors for a little tour of the back deck.  Here they are all laid out under the pop-up tent for shade:

They only stayed out for about half an hour and I made sure that they were all in shade – too much wind or sun at once makes their little leaves burn and curl up.  It was so easy to water too as I just filled up each tray with water and let them sit for 10 – 15 minutes.

HORSE MANURE

I also made it out to a gold mine of 4+ year-old horse manure on the weekend too:

I know it doesn’t look like a lot however I estimate it’s at least 6 feet deep and roughly 100 square feet in size.  It was actually the smaller of two huge piles.

I’ve never dug my own horse manure so of course I brought all the wrong stuff.  I wore waterproof sneakers when I should have worn rubber boots, I brought a shovel instead of my pitchfork and small plastic bags instead of heavy-duty paper bags.

The only advice I was given was to dig down until I “hit the black stuff”.  Not knowing what that was either, I dug until I started to see worms:

I figured that had to be a good sign.  It was about three feet down:

I quickly realized that horse people are super awesome and generous.  They pointed me in the right direction, lent me a pitchfork and a wheelbarrow and gave me some horse chow bags and some baling twine to tie up my huge bags of poop:

On my way out I snapped a quick pic of this horsey dude:

I thought my car would reek of manure but it actually wasn’t that bad.  The worst stench was on my clothes.

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8 Responses to “New Experiences”

  1. keewee Says:

    I see what the horse thought of you, how rude!

  2. David Says:

    Gold mine indeed!

  3. gardengoodies Says:

    I just had a horse dung digging experience too. Mine wasn’t the gold mine yours was, but it was interesting.

  4. Dan Says:

    That is a lot of seedlings, they must keep you busy. I burnt my early tomato a bit today on the lower leaves. I seem to do this every year, maybe I will learn patients one of these days.

    Quite a manure find, it should treat your plants well. The horse photo is hilarious!

  5. Jennifer Says:

    Love the seedlings, but yeah, the watering at this time of year is a little bit MUCH.

    Wish I had a horsey goldmine like that near here to mine for my garden…!

  6. janet Says:

    When is your plant sale? Any green zebras tomatoes in there. I lost all of mine two weeks ago when I left them outside:( and am desperately trying to locate some for my garden this year.

  7. sammyqc Says:

    Hey! Glad you made it out to the barn!
    That horse is a two year filly named Tuscany. She is a doll, and was looking for her goodbye carrots, as her human mom always gives her a parting treat over the fence. She probably figured you should as well!
    Thanks for digging that hole too! Saved me some work!! I’ve been trying to bring a bag or two home every day for my garden, as well as some loose hay to use as mulch this year in the tomato beds.
    Just imagine how big and luscious our tomatoes are gonna be this year!!

  8. Kathy Says:

    Hi Janet,
    I do have some Green Zebra – that’s too bad about your seedlings. I’m thinking of having my sale the weekends of May 2nd and 9th though I haven’t finalized anything yet.

    Sammy, thanks for the tip on the manure – I’ve already got it spread on the satellite garden where I’m planning on putting the tomatoes. Just need to figure out a decent trellising system. Don’t suppose anyone found a pair of RayBan shades at your horse place – I haven’t been able to find them since.

    Kathy


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