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Spring Planting

Planting Vegetables & Herbs | www.myfoododyssey.com

I’m starting to get excited. It’s been a strange winter here in Lithuania as global warming takes its toll on the weather. We missed out on deep snow and crisp, clear blue skies and instead had only a sprinkling of snow and almost perpetual greyness. While the gloomy skies have done nothing for my mood, the change in the weather does mean I can get started earlier than expected on my spring planting.

There is something ataractic about planting vegetables that’s hard to explain. The peace and quiet, the neat rows and symmetrical lines, the tiny seeds that will spring into life providing both beauty and bounty. Despite the fact that it is sometimes hard work it is a process I enjoy immensely.

Planting Vegetables | www.myfoododyssey.com

Last year was our first growing our own vegetables and we were very happy with results. We had a constant supply of fresh lettuce and herbs for the whole summer. We had a bumper crop of beans and grew enough onions to see us through the winter. And we had a late zucchini glut that had me scrambling for recipes to put them to good use.

This year we plan to grow a much wider range of fruit & vegetables. Our chillies and tomatoes did not do well in the porch last year. Now that construction on the house is out of the way and the garden has been cleared we plan on adding a polytunnel to grow chillies, tomatoes and cucumbers. Our sunny conservatory is perfect for growing herbs. We plan on a much larger vegetable plot to include all of last year’s veg plus carrots, beetroot, cabbage and many more. We will also plant a number of fruit trees, but we know it is likely to be a few years before these bear any fruit.

Fruit Tree Blossom | www.myfoododyssey.com

Yesterday I got started on my tomatoes and chillies. I have read that they need about 6-8 weeks indoors before planting out after the last frost. Unfortunately no one knows exactly when the last frost will come and the ground will have thawed enough for planting, so I’m winging it to a certain degree. I expect a certain amount of trial and error in my planting over the first few years until I figure out what grows well in our soil and the ideal times for planting. The only thing I know for sure is that if I plant nothing, nothing will grow. As such, I have a stack of seeds at the ready. I will plant thoughtfully and tend carefully and keep my fingers crossed that at least some items will grow well.

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Planting Vegetables & Herbs | www.myfoododyssey.com

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32 Comments Post a comment
  1. Love your garden. I found you on House Hunters International. I’ll follow your blog!

    Liked by 1 person

    April 23, 2015
  2. sue #

    Nice garden. My husband and I plant one every year but we are old so it is not so big and all but one of our beds is a raised bed. Tomatoes are usually our best crop.

    Liked by 1 person

    April 18, 2015
    • Thanks Sue. I hope to raise some of the beds over time as they’re definitely easier to work with. This will be my first year with a greenhouse and I’m very much looking forward to my first crop of tomatoes!

      Like

      April 18, 2015
  3. Labas, Loved your show about the make-over of your home. My sister and me are coming to Lith this June and want to rent a van like the one in your article. We will be there from June 18 to July 2. Going back to our roots, I was born in Kaunas a long time ago. Still speak Lietuviskai.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 25, 2015
    • Labas Alvida! I think you will love Lietuva, especially at that time of year. You will be here for Jonines, too! I’m not sure exactly when we’ll be using our van this summer but if we’re not using it you could rent ours (if you like!). We won’t know until a bit closer to the time – if you’re interested maybe drop me a mail around mid May. One way or the other you’re welcome to drop by if you’re passing. Iki!

      Like

      February 26, 2015
  4. Terrific blog, June. I envy your gardening abilities. How wonderful. Since the can of worms is open…Global warming is not a myth. Even the conservatives are now agreeing with the proven scientific research. The climate changes are more severe than a cyclical occurance. It’s obvious.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 22, 2015
    • Thanks Jane! Here’s hoping that the new warmer weather gives my plants a bit of kick start!

      Liked by 1 person

      February 22, 2015
  5. I recently saw your HHI episode and really enjoyed it. It led me to your blog and I have been even more inspired. Your zeal for simple livibg is encouraging. Hoping to try some new things myself to live simply. Your pictures of Lithuania are beautiful. I love to travel and think I am going to.add Lithuania to my must see list! God bless you and your family!

    Liked by 1 person

    February 22, 2015
    • Thank you! You should definitely add Lithuania to your list of places to visit – it’s so beautiful here. Thanks for visiting the blog!

      Like

      February 22, 2015
  6. smfarm #

    This might help give you an idea of your frost free dates in Lithuania https://climate.usurf.usu.edu/reports/freezeDates.php?ntwk=GHCN&sSubmit=Select&acronym=LT&sSubmit=Select&g_state=UT
    And keep good records of temperatures, varieties planted, how old the seed was, etc. And that’ll give you a feel for what does well in your soil. Your soil temperature is your best indicator of when to plant.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 20, 2015
    • That chart is brilliant, Julie – thank you! People have been telling me I shouldn’t plant until late April but that seems so late to me. Hopefully I can at least get my polytunnel going earlier than that. I still have all my seed packs from last year with the planting dates scribbled on them, so I must start a chart. I didn’t keep track of temps last year, though – I must start that this year. Thanks for the tips!

      Like

      February 20, 2015
  7. I am preparing to plant my first garden this spring. I’m excited and know there will be a learning curve. Looking forward to seeing how your garden comes along this year.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 20, 2015
    • Thanks Amy. Planting is exciting, isn’t it – watching tiny seeds turn into yummy food! I look forward to seeing a few photos from your garden on your beautiful blog. J.

      Liked by 1 person

      February 20, 2015
  8. I think you will do fine with your garden. I don’t have much of a green thumb. Hubby does most of the gardening around here. But you seem to have a knack for doing all things. Gardening and farming is always a guessing and or waiting game. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    February 20, 2015
    • There’s definitely an element of guessing and waiting, but I don’t mind as I know at least some of it will work out. Lucky you, with the green-thumbed husband!

      Liked by 1 person

      February 20, 2015
  9. Pat #

    I’m from Texas and have been yearning to start planting, too. Saw your episode of House Hunters the other night — you’all chose a great place and have done a great job of remodeling. Best of luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    February 20, 2015
    • Thanks Pat! It must be warming up nicely now in Texas so I’m sure you’ll get planting soon. It’s funny how we itch to get planting once we see the first glimpse of a nice day!

      Like

      February 20, 2015
  10. Holly #

    First I just love your blog.Very interesting to see your progress.I live in Houston,Texas.I spend the mostly mild winters we have here doing maintenance in my garden.Last year I built a cold frame out of cedar boards and an old glass shower door.Works great.Here you really have to grow what will survive 100 degree weather and direct sunlight.I garden to show my daughter that you do not have to get everything at the market.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 19, 2015
    • Hey Holly. Thanks for your comment. It’s so interesting how growing food varies from country to country and even region to region. Ireland is not that far from Lithuania but the weather is totally different so I can’t ask people from home for advice on what to grow. Hopefully at least some of the things I plant will work out!

      Like

      February 19, 2015
  11. This has been a winter of ‘grey’ here to…. with the occasional dash of brown! Waiting patiently for renewed growth and green 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    February 19, 2015
  12. Yeah, gotta be careful with that whole global warming thing; that’s a political term, not reality. You’d be hard pressed to find anyone in the US believing in global warming these past two years. Historically, about every 20 years it gets really, really cold with long bitter winters and mild summers, then it slowly returns to ‘normal’ whatever that is. But very glad you are able to get into the garden early and enjoy the warming of the earth. This year is setting up here in north Missouri for first of June before spring like weather will emerge. I’ll wait until then to stick anything in the ground. Have you ever done any permaculture type gardening? I never have, but the idea is intriguing.

    Liked by 1 person

    February 19, 2015
    • Thanks Tauna. I agree it’s always useful to be cognisant of differing views and beliefs, especially when those views are strongly felt. Personally, I’m pretty agnostic about global warming and was using the term more as a synonym for significant variances from the perceived “norm”, which is certainly what we’re experiencing around here! I’m not very familiar with permaculture but we would like to be as organic as possible so it’s definitely something I will look into further. Gosh – cold weather until June – yikes!

      Liked by 1 person

      February 19, 2015
      • Just watching the news – sounds like one of your neighbours to the east is rumbling. Yeah, we’ve been about 6 months of winter the past 2-3 years. i do hope this is the last year of it. However, it won’t be cold cold by June, but too cold to plant anything in the garden with any reliability of it surviving. But aren’t you from Canada? maybe i’m confused.

        Liked by 1 person

        February 19, 2015
      • No, I’m from Ireland. Mild weather all year round and lots of rain. Maybe you saw an episode with someone from Canada the same day as ours? Yeh, those pesky neighbours are always rumbling. We’re all hoping they don’t rumble in this direction.

        Like

        February 19, 2015
      • i’m sure you are right, yes, now i remember – the music was from Ireland, so of course. duh.

        Liked by 1 person

        February 19, 2015
      • Michael #

        No need to be agnostic about climate change. You are living off the land, therefore you need to be as scientific as possible. There is a rumor in the U.S., one that is fostered by Fox News and the oil industry that climate change is a hoax. These are the same people who don’t believe in evolution and think the Earth is flat. You, and the rest of us have to live with the consequences of air pollution.

        Now, to what I really want to say. I enjoyed your episode of House Hunters International. You did a fine job with your home and I am sure you will learn how to deal with the fluctuating weather. Also want to wish you many happy years in Lithuania. I will also follow your blog. Good job!

        Liked by 2 people

        February 20, 2015
      • Thank you for your kind comment! For every theory there is a counter-theory – it keeps the world interesting! What I know for sure is that everyone around here is confused by the weather, so we’re all figuring it out together. Hopefully we will, indeed, learn to deal with the fluctuations and make something grow. Hope you enjoy the blog, J.

        Like

        February 20, 2015
  13. Sorry, you lost me at “global warming.” You may be too young to remember growing up in the 70’s when they swore that we had entered the Ice Age and the whole earth was going to be covered in ice within 20 years. Now, it’s global warming. How about “the earth goes through changes and we just happen to be living right now.” Have you read that last week the Big Bang Theory was proven to be wrong? My whole life that is how they explained away God and explained how we began. Scientists don’t know everything, just like the weathermen can’t get things right. Global warming did not alter your winter; some winters just are more mild than others 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    February 19, 2015
    • It’s a pity I lost you at “global warming” – you might have found the rest of the article interesting!

      Like

      February 19, 2015
  14. Gary #

    We planted ‘mature’ fruit tress (various apple, pear and plum) in Tipp some years ago and had an abundance of crops on the 2nd year. Paid a few bob more for the mature trees, I think they were 6 – 7 years old, but it was paid back in spades. Good luck!

    Liked by 1 person

    February 19, 2015
    • Thanks Gary. That sounds like a very good idea as we want the trees for landscaping and wind protection as well as for fruit, so getting a bit of a head-start would suit us from all angles. I’ll keep an eye out for something about that age.

      Like

      February 19, 2015

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