Posts Tagged ‘neighbors’

I met another one of our neighbors today, a dairy farmer named Peter Jack who lives up on Cumming Road. He saw me out in the yard with Carter and pulled his pickup truck into the driveway to introduce himself. We had a nice long chat about farming, and family, and work, and land, and local gossip. I love the fact that people around here make the effort to get to know their neighbors. I found out that there is a (mild) milk shortage in Quebec & Ontario, and that the topsoil on our land is very thin (which I already suspected was the case). It’s why there are so many houses (as opposed to farms) on our road – the land isn’t good enough for commercial farming, because the bedrock is too close to the surface. This means that digging the holes for the apple trees is going to be hard work indeed, and that I need to start looking into green manures and cover crops. And maybe consider the straw bed method for planting potatoes.

On Saturday I started the first of my seeds. One flat (36 cells) each of leeks (because they need such a long season to reach a decent size) and parsley (because it takes 3 weeks to germinate), and one of St. John’s Wort. The leeks and parsley are on the big seed rack in the kitchen where they will get the most sun:


The seed rack looks bare, but it won’t for long. I’ll be planting my pepper and tomato and all the other “8 weeks before the last frost” seeds in two week’s time, and then the rack will fill up nicely.

The St. John’s Wort is in the basement. It has very particular germination requirements and ignoring them last year meant that none of the seeds germinated, so I’m being more diligent this year. St. John’s Wort needs light to germinate, so you have to carefully place the minuscule seeds on the surface of the seed starting mix, and they can’t be warmer than 15°C. Hence they are in the basement, sitting on the cool cement floor. Hopefully I’ll have more luck with them this year. St. John’s Wort is a perennial, so if I do manage to get it started this time, then at least I won’t have to go through this again next year!

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