Sage and Snow Garden Club meeting Feb. 21
February 18, 2012
The Sage and Snow Garden Club will hold their next regular meeting on Tuesday, February 21st at the Sublette County Weed & Pest Office (County Shop on South Bench Road), 5:00 PM. Special guest will be Stuart Doty of "Wyomatoes". Mr. Doty will share his expertise on extending the growing season with greenhouses, cold frames and hoop houses. The meeting is open to the public.
Sage and Snow Garden Club February newsletter
Flora is up to her neck in seed catalogs and is dreaming about all those new flowers and vegetables she is going to try this year. Some have said that gardening in Sublette County is a challenge, but if you know a few tricks, you can have beautiful gardens that provide healthy food for the body and soul.
I just moved here and would love to meet other gardeners. How can I accomplish that?
The Garden Club meets the third Tuesday in the month, so the next meeting will be February 21. We get together at the Sublette County Weed & Pest Office at 12 South Bench Road, Pinedale (307-367-4728). Social time starts at 4:30 P.M., followed by a short business session at 5:00 P.M. To find out more about the Garden Club, go to our website at www.sageandsnow.org.
I just moved here from a place that is very different. What are some pointers that I need to know about gardening in Sublette County?
Choose varieties that mature early (have short growing seasons), but be careful about choosing varieties that have the shortest days to maturity because these are sometimes not very prolific or flavorful. If you have a question about a certain variety, just contact the seed company since they are the experts and are usually very willing to answer questions. Here are some excellent sources of seeds for high altitude gardens: www.Seedstrust.com (Cornville, Arizona --near Flagstaff) and www.bestcoolseeds.com (Alaska). The Sage and Snow Garden Club has compiled information on successful gardening in this area, including information on vegetables from arugula to zucchini, herbs, and berries; go to the website at www.sageandsnow.org and look under Gardening Information.
I'm looking for a different, but very hardy, salad green. Any suggestions?
Signed: Bored With Lettuce
You may want to try mache as it is the most cold-tolerant salad green; it is also known as lamb’s lettuce, corn lettuce, rapunzel and field salad. It can be planted as soon as you can dig the ground. It grows close to the ground. It is described as "nutty-flavored and sweet." There are two good sites to learn about mache: www.veggiegardeningtips.com/mache-salad-greens and www.mastergardeners.org/picks/mache. There are several varieties. Seeds are available from Seeds Trust, Johnny’s Seeds, and Cook’s Garden.
I'm just starting to grow a vegetable garden. What would you suggest as an easy starter plant that will definitely grow here and encourage me to continue?
Signed: Need a Quick Win
You can never go wrong with radishes. An old Pinedale favorite is Cherry Belle available from bestcoolseeds.com and Territorial Seeds. Pink Beauty, from Johnny’s Seeds, is another good one. There are so many varieties that will do well here and they are so easy to grow that you should try at least 2 different varieties. They are wonderful for children to grow, too, as they can be grown in a small space.
I ordered too many seeds last year. I kept them, but will they come up this year?
Signed, Spring Fever
Yes, you can plant leftover seeds this year. I hope you put them in the refrigerator or some other dry spot, but even if you didn't give them a try. To be on the safe side, if it is a flower or vegetable that you really depend on, you might consider getting another packet of seeds this year in case all your old seeds don't germinate. There are several seed companies that offer smaller quantities of seeds. To test the germination rate, put 10 seeds in a line on one half of a moist paper towel, then fold the other half of the paper towel over the seeds. Slide the towel into a plastic bag and seal the bag 3/4 of the way. Check the towel daily and keep it moist. After a week to 10 days, pull the towel out of the bag, unfold it and count how many seeds germinated. If all of the seeds germinated (10 out of 10), you have a perfect germination rate. If the germination rate falls between 60 to 100 percent (6-10 seeds germinate), you can plant the seed, but sow a little heavier than normal to make up for the seeds' reduced viability. If less than 60 percent of the seed germinated, you should buy new seeds.
Can I save seeds from plants I have grown in my garden?
Signed, Wanda Sherum
Yes, saving seeds is a great way to keep your favorites from year to year and also share with friends. Just store seeds in a paper envelope, in a dry, cool, dark place until next spring.
My husband loves potatoes and I would like to grow some potatoes for him. What varieties work best here?
Signed, Amy McSpud
Potatoes do very well here. The easiest potatoes to grow in our climate are Red Norland and Yukon Gold. Irish Eyes catalog and website describe all sorts of potatoes.
I love to use the internet; can I buy seeds online?
Signed, Pay Pal
Yes. Most seed companies have websites, plus you can even buy seeds from www.Amazon.com and www.eBay.com. One way to start is to "Google" a plant and you can see all the sources where the seed is available. The magazine Mother Earth News just published a list of their readers’ top 15 favorite seed catalogs that can be found at www.MotherEarthNews.com. You might also enjoy the Garden Watchdog at www.davesgarden.com that has consumer ratings, websites and information on hundreds of seed sellers and nurseries.