It’s January. The snow is on the ground, it’s cold outside and you’re probably thinking what can I do in the garden at this time of year. Here are a couple of things that I like to do in January.
Number one, look at my seed stocks. See what I have left over from 2018. Many times we have product left over from 2017 and 2016. Some of these items probably need to be disposed of; things like leek, onion, parsley, parsnip. Those are crops that don’t last very long in storage and therefore won’t germinate very well next spring so don’t try to even replant those. They have about a one-year storage life so you’ll need to buy some new seed. If you have beans or carrot or pea, some of those crops, look at the label and see what year they were produced in. If they are older than three or four years maybe you want to think about getting new stocks of those rather than replant. That will ensure that you get plenty of seeds that will sprout in the spring.
Other crops like tomato, pepper, most of our melons and squashes, lettuces and most of the brassicas have a fairly long storage life so if you’ve kept them under good conditions they should be fine. Storage is important. When you’re in storage think about cold and dry. So, put them in some type of container in the future. The container should be a mason jar or some other jar with a rubber seal to it so they store well. Don’t store them in plastic bags, they tend to be somewhat porous. And certainly, don’t think about storing them in the freezer. Freezing really doesn’t really do them that much good.
So, get your seed catalog out, look at your seed stores, order what you need and get ready for February because in February what we’re going to do is start growing some transplants.