Monday, May 11, 2009

A Little Experimenting

The peas and snap peas are now officially an experiment.

What am I experimenting? Well apparently how best to neglect pea seedlings and see if they'll still produce.

It all started off with me sowing the peas indoors - MISTAKE #1.

Then it was leaving the pea seedlings outside in torrential rains for almost 10 days straight - MISTAKE #2.

(Ok, I'm exaggerating a bit, but suffice it to say it rained a lot.)

Finally, it was putting them in an ill-prepared bed that is only partially sunny for most of the day - MISTAKE #3.

Well... not actually the final mistake because that would be when I left the seed tray sitting in the middle of the grass where Ellie thought they'd be a comfy place to sit - meaning that now most of their stems are broken.

There she is sitting on some perennial shoots.... she's not on the peas yet... that was her next move.

In spite of all this, I planted them anyway (top view from my porch)... Notice my lovely brick laying skills.

And, I planted ALL of them... all 24 seedlings in a 4x6 rocky bed... HA... I'll show them! I figured maybe I'll get lucky with just one of the 24 and get a handful of peas. Anyway, since at this point the odds are low that they'll do anything I decided to plant them in a less than good spot - reserving the best beds for the seedlings that have a better chance of survival (actually the pic makes the soil look much worse than it actually is. It's been amended with lots of compost, manure, and peat moss for drainage).

To make matters worse, I didn't want to go through the trouble of setting up a nice vining system with string, so I just shoved in these green metal trellis that I bought at Lowes last year (these things actually worked great with the cucumbers). ...Can you tell I'm getting annoyed with these peas? Anyway, I didn't put much thought into how I'd put the trellis in there or how I'd harvest around them, so now I'll be playing my own version of the game Twister if these peas actually produce. I can just see it now... I'll try to harvest my first peas in the middle of the bed and fall flat on top of them thereby sealing any last chance they had a survival.

Anyway, I'll keep you posted on this pea experiment. It will be a miracle if I get one pod!

On a happier front, here's a preview of the front perennial bed.

As you can see there's lots of things poking through and doing really well (thank goodness something is...). I did a lot of work here this weekend moving things around, fertilizing, weeding, and digging out the Asiatic lilies (I had no choice but to pull them since they were already infested with the lily beetle).

Notice the white petals that have fallen on the bed from a nearby flowering tree. It's snowing petals and I'll be busy cleaning that up soon too.

The empty spot around the tree trunk is where the lilies were. I haven't decided yet what I'm going to put there to replace them but I'm leaning towards day lilies. Any ideas would be much appreciated.

Here's what's planted in the bed (sorry I only know the common names):

Montauk daisies
Lamb's Ear
Bearded Tongue (Penstemon)
Shasta daisies
Hardy geranium
Black-eyed susans
Jacob's ladder
Mrs. Bradshaw Geum
American Dream Coreopsis
Russian Sage


tina said...

The peas will be fine, don't you worry. But next year-no planting inside:)

RainGardener said...

Too funny - sounds like me and seeds! But your flower gardens are just terrific. Beautiful! And I, for one, love common names. That's how I say 'em too on my post. So much easier.

Beegirl said...

Too funny! Best of luck with your peas! My mom put some in one of the beds out back, then kept digging them up to see if they were "sprouting." It's a miracle anything came up. I better check on them today to see if they need something to climb on yet...!

Dirt Princess said...

Coneflowers do great! They make great cut flowers.

mlc said...

Your perennial bed will be beautiful. Very nice. Most of us old country gardeners have beds full of weeds and we have to struggle to figure out what are the keepers.
I was thinking about blogging about my peas in the my big Dirt Garden--but then I wouldn't want to make you sad. Except..I think a deer or two have been coming and tasting--and my friends said that one of these days they will just EAT.!!

Tatyana said...

Sometimes I think that seedlings do better when we forget about them. If I forgot about my poppy seedlings, they wouldn't be overwatered and died... Good post!

Jan said...

Your pea experience sounds familiar to me. That is one of the reasons I don't try and grow vegetables. The perennial bed is looking very nice. By mid-summer, it will be filled out well.

Always Growing

GardenJoy4Me said...

Hello there Jackie !
Thank you for dropping by my blog : )
I love the sense of humour you have here .. and your little furry apprentice ? she is a cutie !
We share a lot of the same plants.
If I were to plant in that area .. day lily would be very hardy and pretty .. there are many more cultivars that are rebloomers so you don't have just that one flush.
Good luck with those peas girl .. you did a great job with the bed .. now only if they would do their part ? LOL