2023 Food Garden!

How did the 2022 Food Garden thread not make it into the year in review?

Seed catalogs stacking up!

Today I sprayed my stonefruit trees with dormant oil!

What do you all do in January?


Marvel that my parsley is still alive! And my catnip!


Every year starts out the same for us:

  • Master chore list update
  • Seed order
  • Garden layout and bed rotation

Hope to have it done by tommorow. First up after that will be to get some early peas in the ground.


I plan to plant some cilantro, radishes, and maybe a few beets. If it’s not raining tomorrow (I appreciate and worship any rain we have, BTW, so I’m not complaining).
And some seeds for pea shoots

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You are far too organized- makes me look bad, which is actually very appropriate.

Lol. Chalk it up to laziness. As long as we prep the job-list once every year, we don’t have to get up every day and figure out what needs doing. We just go down the checklist (allowing some flexibility for weather patterns). If you hadn’t already guessed, I’m a meal planner for the same reason.


I watch my citrus trees and lavender plants shed, wither, and teeter on the verge of death while I look on anxiously. :face_exhaling:


Happier New Year all!

It’s been raining like crazy here! Yesterday I was thinking we have four seasons; drought, fire, flood, and mudslide. Also not complaining!

I still try to get out there to look at stuff I planted before the flood season.
Sugar Snap peas; most did not come up. I assume they rotted.



Crimson clover ( to improve soil, block worse weeds, reduce soil erosion)

Sad Meyer lemons

Also sad verwintering and occasionally harvested peppers

Fingerling potatoes

Thyme and parsley


Oh! But you have living/growing things! Such an optimistic sign that spring is (eventually) coming.


Yes! Spring comes and goes very quickly here; basically February. I was just thinking since it rained, I’m going to have to squeeze in more tree spraying by then.

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Yup. Waiting for a dry spell here, too. We’ll prune the fruit trees, blueberries and grapes as soon as we have a shot at a 48-hour dry stretch. After that, we’ll need to oil the trees, also contingent on dry weather. It’s about to get busy! Yay! :smile:


My zone will be too cold for gardening until May. I planted my okra, some greens on April 25th last year, and had a foot of snow on April 27th. Some vegetables planted that day came up, but less than 5 percent. If I want closer to 80 % survival rate, I need to wait to plant until Memorial Day.

I don’t grow too many things indoors for transferring later. We don’t have enough sunny exposure through the windows, and I’m not set up with a grow light.

I left some kale and parsley in the ground, so if we have a warm spell for a couple weeks, we might get some kale and parsley, but that’s about it. Maybe some Swiss chard will volunteer.

The first thing I can pick from my garden is young rhubarb, which is big enough to pick in mid to late April.


I ordered seeds today! (Does special seed-ordering dance.)


There should be some kind of magical pipeline that shunts water from flooded areas to dried out, parched, drought areas like mine (and usually shrinkrap’s). The disparities are just so intense.

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Who among us has experience with growing pea shoots? I’m about to plant some and would like any feedback that folks who’ve grown them have to share

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If by pea shoots you mean peas that have sprouted but not matured into plants, all I can say is birds love 'em. Once they figure out where you have planted them, they’ll keep coming back for more. To stymie our avian friends, we keep all our rows covered with a little tunnel of chicken wire until the pea plants are well beyond the sprout stage.


I grow peas and would love to harvest shoots, but the tendrils are kind of off-putting - wiry and tough.


I think @bogman described a variety with grey in the name as good for shoots. I think I grew some last year, but can’t say my results were noteworthy.


I replanted my peas and snap peas 5 or 6 times last year. The birds loved them.


I’ve grown pea shoots for years and supplied a restaurant, at the vineyard where I worked, with two kinds:

•Green tips: These are typically planted in-ground or soil and given sunlight. The peas are planted fairly close together, about an inch (2.5cm) apart. When the plants reach about 5–6 inches tall (13–15cm), the tender tips are snipped off. This includes the very tip, a young leaf which is still folded, and one leaf below the folded/immature leaf. Picking below the youngest mature leaf may yield a tougher product. They are very tender and delicious raw or briefly stir fried until just wilted.

Growing these under Agribon insect netting is a good way to prevent aphids from attacking and keeping birds at bay.

•Blanched: These are a real delicacy and can be grown any time of the year. You need one or more waterproof plastic or fiberglass, shallow growing trays and a completely dark place to grow them. I used cardboard boxes on top of the trays, with small vent holes, to grow them in a cabinet. You want it dark, but not so closed off as mold grows.

The peas are soaked overnight and rinsed. The trays were filled with a mix of potting soil and chicken grit (grower size), 50/50. The soaked peas are scattered in a single layer, pressed into the surface and barely covered. They’ll sprout in just a few days. As they grow, it’s often helpful to shake, brush and rinse any adhering soil off the emerging, pale shoots. They should be yellow and harvested when just a few inches tall.

In both cases, the peas can regrow a second crop. After that, the blanched ones usually get too weak, but the green ones may offer a third or fourth picking.

The peas used were Dwarf Grey Sugar. While this old variety does make flat snow peas, it’s inferior for pods; there are many better types for pods. However, Dwarf Grey Sugar is excellent for tender shoots and usually one of the less expensive seeds to purchase. FYI: for those in the US, Johnny’s Selected Seeds currently (Jan. 4) has Dwarf Grey Sugar pea seeds on sale. Keep clicking “show more” if browsing the pea selections.

The trays I use are Permanest 1020 size, very handy for many applications, including growing watercress.

I’ve been craving pea shoots and may get some growing soon. The greenhouse is too packed and the outdoors often too frigid. So, the blanched type seems more doable, unless I can make some window space. The green type should grow well under lights.

If one is growing a lot of green tips (often called “tendrils”), it’s helpful to use a seed inoculant (Rhizobium) to coat the wet seeds before planting. This microbe dwells in the legume’s roots and supplies the plants with nitrogen for faster, healthier growth. It’s not worth using on blanched shoots or if growing a small amount.