Thursday, April 28, 2011

the experiment

With the wet weather that we continue to have (although the weather man does seem to be promising sunshine, after today's rain, for over a week) I decided to start my green beans indoors this year.

I normally don't start anything indoors. I just plant my seeds into the garden directly. Last year taught me a lesson though. I re-planted my pole beans 3 times thanks to slugs. We'll be adding 2 ducks to the homestead this weekend so hopefully that will help with the slime predators.

I'm not taking any chances this year and so I planted about 40 pole beans the other day. I don't have any creative set up for starting seeds indoors (like a UV light) and we hardly have room to place the little flats but starting them indoors may mean the difference in canning 50 Qts of green beans or 6.

Here's what I came up with....

Seeds like sunshine so I placed them on the kitchen counter somewhat near the window (which is about the most sun we're going to get in this house unless the seeds were in a bedroom.) Then I placed a heating pad underneath the flat to warm up the soil. I read that warm soil is what keeps the seedlings from growing tall and spindly.

I'm not sure that this really is going to work but it is worth experimenting with and everything I used, we already owned. It didn't cost a dime.

I'll let you know how it all turns out!


Unknown said...

What a great idea!! Keep us posted!

Unknown said...

I'm getting desperate too. It's either do peas now or scrap them altogether because it's nearly too late. We have 3 days here where it might not rain and I'm going for it on Saturday & giving them a head start by chitting them today.

Hoping that you'll soon be up to your eyeballs in beans :)

Thistle Cove Farm said...

Good idea on the heating pad and yes, it does work. Around here our frost date is 15 May but people who wait until first of June to plant catch up to the early birds. Why? Because the soil is a lot warmer in June than mid-May...same principle as the heating pad.

Heather's Blog-o-rama said...

Wow, that is c reative. I hope it works ;) :) Love and hugs from Oregon, Heather :)

Kim said...

It should work~my seeds didn't come up because I was too cheap to buy a heating mat (for seedlings) and honestly, I didn't even think about a heating pad! Good thinking!

Mountain Home Quilts said...

I'm with you Kim on the cheap part. I don't know how those special mats work so that's why this is all an experiment. I just cranked the pad to high because low and medium didn't seem to be heating up the soil very well. I hope I don't have it too hot! LOL

goatldi said...

I am not the gardener in the family. My husband is. I do great with anything with four legs, or two , but if it has roots. Er, well , that is another sad story.

But what you are doing makes good sense. Now off to the barn to feed those bottle babies. 4 legs no roots.

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