Because there are no farm stands to buy Spring seedlings, I started my vegetables from seeds this year.
This page is an update on how my vegetables, and some flowers are growing. The hydrangea that I planted in the yard a few years ago is still doing well – surprisingly. See photos down the page.
Zucchini, Beans, Tomato, and Eggplant
Zucchini seeds were planted directly into a grow box. One plant is hanging on, the other two died. It is not growing well.
The beans are newly planted and doing very well. More about the beans further down the page.
The Cherry Tomato plants are thriving, and the eggplant (not from seeds) is giving me little eggplants.
Most plants have been in the ground, or transplanted to pots, for a few weeks now. We have not had much rain, so I water every day.
The Cherry Tomato Plants
All of the cherry tomato plants were begun in eggshell pots. Depending on where they went when transplanted, it has really made a big difference in their growth.
the First Transplanting of the tomatoes
The little seedlings that went straight into the garden grow box are still quite small. In fact, one of them died.
The cherry tomato plants that were transplanted into small, individual pots began to thrive. I think I would plant seeds directly into these pots next time.
From the small pots they went into large patio pots where they will stay. Already they have flowers forming.
Bigger plants today
Planting the seeds in small pots (eggshells in my case) got the plants off to an early start in March, however… I would skip that next time and put the seeds straight into small 4-6” pots instead. Caring for the little eggshells was time consuming as they needed watering often.
But, it has made all the difference in the way I transplanted them. The plants in the garden box are not growing fast at all. The plants I transplanted twice – into good garden potting soil – are nearly ready to give me tomatoes.!
Jalepeño Pepper Plants
The pepper plants are doing nicely. It seems to be one thing that grows well in Florida, mainly because peppers like it hot. In New Hampshire it took way too long for the plants to grow to a size to begin producing – and by then the frosts came.
These jalepeño peppers are in small clay pots for now.
The Dirt Makes All The Difference
We set up new garden boxes in the yard this year. We mistakenly bought many bags of dirt at the local Home Depot that was not good soil. It was supposed to be added to already established beds. We dumped it into the grow boxes and raised beds. Nothing that has been planted in that soil has done well.
All we can do is amend the soil with better dirt, so that is what I am doing. But it is too late for the seeds and seedlings struggling in those boxes.
The Black Gold brand is what I had good luck with – this is an Amazon affiliate link. But the Black Gold is expensive if you need to fill a large box or raised bed. I plan to make my own compost and amend the soil with that. Dirt can be improved, but it might take time. Here in Florida we can plant again in Fall.
Potatoes and Green Beans
Most every potato stalk has died, so I am filling those two beds with bean seeds. Beans and potatoes are companion plants.
These are bush beans and do not need staking, but I put the cages in to keep animals from digging around in the dirt. Something climbs up into the beds at night and digs. I’ve already lost a couple bean seedlings.
Beans do okay with heat, so I am hoping they will grow throughout the summer.
I’m having better luck with the Japanese eggplant than I did with the regular eggplant. The old one grew into a small tree and only gave me a few eggplants to eat.
At the end of last year I planted this Japanese eggplant plant. I bought it as a small plant.
It has consistently given me little eggplants to enjoy. It quit producing over winter, but now it is going strong. The eggplants are small but are the perfect size for me.
No Luck With These
- Carrots – they are simply not growing
- Cucumber – small vines, curling cukes
- Beets – leaves totally eaten by something
Older Garden Boxes
The eggplant is growing in one box, with peppers in the center box and a scraggly tomato plant in the third. I’m waiting for all the tomatoes to turn red and then the plant will be ripped out. It doesn’t have many leaves and is not doing well. All these plants had to be covered at night all winter, and they did not like those colder temps.
Growing Cosmos From Seeds
Plant the cosmos seeds in good dirt in a larger size pot. I began a few cosmos plants in eggshells, but they didn’t do well at all.
Directly sow seeds into big pots and they will create a pretty display.
In my photo here I have two pots and one is doing a lot better. It’s the dirt. The smaller plant was recently transplanted into good dirt and now I’m hopeful it will flourish.
The raccoons got into the other pot and dug up part of the seedlings. The ones left are blooming and look good.
The Hydrangea Plant in May
New leaves have grown on my one hydrangea plant and today I noticed there are about five tiny buds. The plant looks nice and healthy.