Thursday, February 12, 2009

Container Garden: Plant Selection

In the depths of winter here in southern California, the only thing that keeps me going is the thought of planting my container garden come spring.

OK, that's just nonsense.

According to Burpee's Zone Finder, I'm in Zone 10 which means the lowest temperatures are between 30 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit and my last frost date is sometime in February. Winter, what's that? So I should probably start starting my seeds inside in anticipation of an early April transplant to the great outdoors.

I've had a hard time focusing on what to plant this first year. As I've discussed before, I think basil and parsley are musts. I go through a lot of rosemary and given it's penchant for dry heat and sun to mixed sun and shade, it might be well-suited to our patio. I use a lot of sage, but Burpee lists it as suitable only up to Zone 8.

Other than herbs I'm also seriously contemplating tomatoes. We eat at least one a day and we'd eat more if they were around. Also, they're on the list of foods you should buy organic if you can because industrially grown they are so heavily laden with pesticides and fertilizer evilness. Finally, the hybrid high-yield monsters available at the grocery store are less nutritious than the heirloom options I could grow at home.

I also don't want to overreach. I totally lack a green thumb. It must skip a generation or something because Mom is like a horticultural wonder. So I'm thinking I should focus my initial efforts on only a few plants: basil, parsley, and tomatoes.

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Rebecca said...

Do you have a good source for seeds? I saw some organic seeds at Target. Until then it never occurred to me that I should look for them! I need to get my seedlings growing. I haven't figured out what/where stuff will go, but I know I want herbs and tomatoes too.