Starting the Fall garden

Gabalot Gardens

Gabalot Gardens

Well, I’ve been clearing out a couple beds for fall crops, in between peeling & freezing peaches. So decided that today I’d go get some stuff to plant in them. Fall things, like broccoli, spinach, radishes… the usual suspects.

So first I went to Southern States & messed around for a while. I did get some seeds there- lettuce, daikon radishes, etc. Also got lots of mouse & ant killer. (Whole ‘nother story…)

Then I headed for a little nursery the mater had told me about- Gabalot. As warned, Janet DOES talk a lot. But unlike many people, she actually imparts a lot of info. She’s “only” been running Gabalot Gardens for 16 years, and says she’s still learning.

Many of her seeds are heirloom (non-hybrid, which means you can save your own seed for next year) which is exactly what we’re up to here @ Mt Pleasant. Her two main suppliers are Landreth Seeds in Pennsylvania, which she also sells in bulk and Renee’s Garden.

I got some gorgeous broccoli & brussel sprouts seedlings, and then some things to dress up the planters a bit. But also got rainbow chard seeds, b/c I like them so much. (For those of you in PT, check the window boxes of the Silverwater Cafe. Those are Bright Lights chard)

What’s really exciting is that I asked her about whether she starts seeds for others in her fancy greenhouse. Not only does she, she has an interesting way that she does it. If you buy seed & send or take it to her to plant, you tell her how many plants you want. She keeps the rest of the seeds & gets the income from selling those seedlings. That’s it.

I don’t know if other greenhouses do that, but it sounds wonderful to me. Growing seedlings is really pretty labor & equipment intensive (My lettuce seedlings were a total failure… I was hardening them off & a thunderstorm hit & washed them all out. Starting over…)

Anyway, a very fun & productive day… and a new friend.

7 Responses to “Starting the Fall garden”

  1. Brad says:

    Thanks, Sara! The Gabalot web site is delightful. I especially liked the photos; Janet is someone I’d enjoy knowing. You accused Deb of taunting you – now it’s my turn. In 3 weeks we’ll be in Greece on the island, eating fresh eggs, using virgin local olive oil, and eating whatever’s still in season from our buddy’s organic farm. No to mention various versions of grape juice left to sit around and ferment…

  2. Sara says:

    NOOOO!!! (can you hear me screaming from here?)

    I thought you just got back from Greece? What is it like in the Fall/Winter? Oh. My. Goddess. I am so jealous. No, not jealous, b/c it’s not like I don’t want that for you & Sandy. I just want it for me, too. (I’ve heard that that’s what being jealous is about. It’s a sign that it’s something you should be working toward. Pls give your friends my email addy 😉 )

    Holy Toledo. That sounds darned near perfect. You MUST take pictures of your meals this time. I can hardly even imagine what all you’ll be eating. Trying to make Greek food w/American ingredients (and I’ve tried) is a mess. Yes, I can make baklava & avgolemeno, but it’s not the REAL thing.

    Checking my frequent flier miles…

  3. Brad says:

    Sara, guess I feel the same way about you in MX. Pictures please, of places and food! As to GR, the weather is usually fantastic into early October. After that storms can come, but the real yuck doesn’t hit until later. Any time you want to plan Greek stuff or just wander through web sites, try gogreece.com – lots there!

  4. Deb says:

    Eeehh yeah. I won’t be in Greece, farming or eating anything noteworthy. I did mention the Lentil Festival though, right???

  5. Ken says:

    Hi Sara. I heard from Javantea that it is your birthday on Tuesday. You don’t know me but I get to meet Javantea tomorrow to talk about his company. I wouldn’t normally cash in on brownie points (http://www.cell-game.com/page/jav_blog/40) but after reading a few of your blog entries, I think we’re kindred spirits. And, completely unrelatedly but somewhat relevant, I am traveling to Arlington for work tomorrow. Small world. Anyway, happy birthday this Tuesday and Namaste.

  6. Anthony says:

    Woah, just what I needed to read. I just moved into a place in Seattle and want to get started on a winter garden. I’ve only done a few garden projects, and not too much winter garden experience, so trying to learn the ‘usual suspects’.

    Anyhow, happy birthday!

  7. Sara says:

    Hi Anthony– Thanks for your comment! Good luck w/your garden. Seattle has such a great climate for greens & brassicas (cabbage, broccoli, cauli, kale, etc). Your season is even longer than ours here.
    There are a lot of really great garden centers in Seattle, too. The smaller ones (not Lowe’s, etc) usually have very good advice & seeds/plants. Once you figure out your Zone, a good gardening book will tell you what to grow when. My favorite for just starting out is Victory Garden, which gives a month-by-month schedule.