I haven’t been doing much gardening, except I’ve ordered some new plants like a hazel nut tree and several raspberries bushes in December, add soil in certain pots. Also repot certain plants that are growing too big. Also a lot of cleaning. I need to find time soon to repot and treat a peach tree that has serious leaf curl problem, it may be a bit too late now, I should have done it in late autumn.
A question on fava beans, been growing them annually for a few years already. Sometimes I sow them interior but most of the time in exterior bed directly, I’m wondering why in some beds, they always germinate, but when I sowed the seeds in the tomato bed (the same seeds as other part of the garden in the same year), no germination, are they eaten by the things in the soil? In the beginning, I thought, maybe the soil was too wet, I remember digging and found nothing in the soil, no trace of seeds or rotten seeds. If so, are there ways I can sow them in soil without being eaten? Or I need to sow indoors and transplant? Thanks in advance.
My favorite seed companies, in the US, are Johnny’s Selected Seeds and Seeds from Italy. Both sell high quality seeds. The Italian seed packets are almost always much more generous and contain many more seeds than American companies. I’ve had repeated troubles with Baker Creek, either the seed did not sprout or in some cases, the plants were outcrossed. I had a big planting of “Futsu” squash from BC and only about 25% of the squash were true to type. Lots of the unusual stuff had zero germination.
I’m still harvesting Aji Amarillo (see separate thread), despite a night time low of 16 degrees F ( -9 C). The two space heaters kept the mini hoop house above freezing. This week, starting today, radicchio will be set up to force, in the dark and under straw. I’ll try to take some pictures. About 35 feet (11 meters) of double rows needs to be condensed, replanted into a shorter 20 foot ( 6 meter) space. I’ll plant in between existing plants, pull off all the leaves and bury them all in a deep layer of straw. Then, plastic-covered hoops will be put up to keep the straw dry.
Naf, your fava story is very curious. Maybe you can sprout the seeds indoors, on paper towel and plant directly once they’ve sprouted. It almost sounds like rodents may have been stealing seeds, if no trace was found. A mix of cayenne and black pepper powder might keep rodents from digging, it irritates their noses.
January 6 and the radicchio have not been frozen back, very odd. Since the foliage hasn’t been killed by cold, it’s time to strip off the leaves, replant them closer together and bury them in straw. Too bad the colorful outer leaves are too bitter.
Variegata di Castelfranco stripped leaves:
The next couple days and night won’t be too cold, so the plants will be left to dry out the wounds where leaves were peeled off. By tomorrow, they should be ready for straw, hoop & plastic cover (to keep the straw dry) and left alone for 4-8 weeks.
The white inside is a white-topped weed barrier, which is black on the bottom. This was laid on top of straw to help exclude light. The ends have a flap open to cool on mild, sunny days and to dry the inside, which gets damp from soil moisture.