The First Lettuce is Planted
We planted four different varieties of lettuce this week; six plants each of Merlot, Red Sails, Plato II and, my favorite, Sierra. The seedlings were started on March 9 in our home's sunspace.
After planting the lettuce, we covered it with a floating row cover called Agribon+ AG-19. It can be used to protect plants from insects or, in this case, from the cold. The material offers about 4 degrees of frost protection. But, even without the row cover, hardened lettuce plants should survive 20 F. We keep it on until the danger of frost has past. Then we replace it with a shade cloth to protect the lettuce from the hot summer sun.
The link above for the row cover Agribon+ takes you to a page on Johnny's Selected Seeds website. They have a much better and more informative website than Fedco Seeds, the supplier we bought the row cover from. Fedco's price of $13.00 for a 83" x 50' roll beats Johnny's price of $21.95 by quite a bit.
We are 'Fans of FEDCO' here at Distant Hill Gardens
We purchase all of our seed from Fedco Seeds, a company based in Waterville, Maine. It is one of the few seed companies in the United States organized as a cooperative. Because making a profit is not their primary goal, their prices are much lower than most seed companies. And they offer much more than just seeds. Fedco has five divisions:
- Fedco Seeds - Untreated vegetable, herb and flower seeds
- Moose Tubers Certified seed potatoes, onion sets & shallots
- Organic Growers Supply - Cover crops, soil amendments & supplies
Fedco Trees - Trees, shrubs, fruits, berries, bulbs & perennials
- Fedco Bulbs - Fall planted flower bulbs and garlic.
They all publish annual catalogs. Nothing fancy with no glossy color pages, just black and white. But with lots of useful information and great prices. And they offer many certified-organic varieties of seeds and tubers. They recently started selling lifetime memberships in Fedco for $100 and Distant Hill Gardens joined as soon as we heard about it.
More than half of the ornamental plantings at Distant Hill Gardens were bought from Fedco - many of our bulbs, perennials, trees and shrubs. We should really change our name from Distant Hill Gardens to 'FEDCO Gardens.'