Soil blocks, looking for rocks, buying a car… and more!

That’s just a preview – so much happened today that we’re going to break it up into several posts.


Today Anna and I made more soil blocks. We’re really getting good at getting making them (right amount of water, enough dirt so they are consistent size, etc).  Ground cherries, cauliflower, cabbage, kohlrabi, spinach, and kale (approximately 36 of each). There was a shortage of space in the “greenhouse” because of the transplanting backup, so we put basil, eggplant, and peppers in miniblocks. Then we put them on the heating pad! I covered them loosely in plastic so they won’t dry out. The cabbage and kale are hanging out in the west-facing mudroom window. I’m really excited to be able to compare our leggy cabbage to the ones we planted today. Next week we are planting TOMATOES, more eggplant, and more basil. And that’s it. There is also a chance we’ll bump up some of our peas. Peas could have been started February 6th, but you can succession plant them (keep on planting and harvesting multiple times throughout the season), and we weren’t planning to start quite yet. Oh yeah – I also transplanted the 3 tiny stevia sprouts into giant pots. Hopefully they make it! If not I’m just going to buy a plant at the farmers market.

Here’s the To Do list for this week (this doesn’t include ongoing things like “finish permaculture map of property” and “make sure all the formulas work in the planting calendar”):

  • Buy cover crop/green manure seeds
  • Calculate how much of each soil amendment is needed + purchase (greensand, colloidal phosphate, lime, maybe some bloodmeal and fishgoo)
  • Talk to our farmer neighbor about paying him to plow our fields (just for this starter year, after that we are no till)
  • Depending on how it goes with the farmer, perhaps buy seed broadcaster and amendment spreader
  • Decide whether to do bat house (do they really cut down on mosquitos that much?)
  • BUY MORE HOOPS for row covers
  • Write farmer job description
  • Decide what to do with upstairs living space (leaning towards ripping up old carpet, putting in cheap temporary carpet)

One thought on “Soil blocks, looking for rocks, buying a car… and more!

  1. UPDATES!!! After doing some online research, it appears that if you are using grow lights they need to be within a couple of inches of the plants’ leaves. Oops. Will adjust the setup tomorrow. Ours are like 2 feet away at least. Also found out it’s totally ok to transplant *some* kinds of leggy seedlings really deep (tomatoes actually get tougher and more awesome this way). I wasn’t sure about that… So that means more research before next week to see if it’s safe for brassicas.

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