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Materials: Civic Garden Center Seed Package and fall planting guide, flour (optional), seed tape, plant ID sticks/tags access to water, and a compass.
Hooray, you’re ready to plant! On your fall planting guide from the Civic Garden Center, you’ll notice that you need to orient yourself so you know which direction is north. Once you know which direction is north, you can use the planting grid to guide you in planting your seeds.
We started by planting the seed tape. The fall planting guide was referenced to determine the square foot plots to place the various seeds. Soil was lightly spread on top of the whole piece of seed tape, a layer with a depth about the diameter of the seed being planted. The name of the plant was then written on a popsicle stick and stuck in the plot for plant identification purposes. This process was then repeated for each piece of seed tape. We created seed tape for Arugula, Cilantro, Lettuce, Kale, Sorrel, and Swiss Chard since it is recommended to plant 4 seeds or less per square foot for these plants. Next time we are going to experiment with seed mats.
For plants with recommendations of six seeds or more per square foot, we marked the planting spacing with flour. For example, for carrots and radishes it is recommended that 16 seeds be plants per square foot. We marked a pattern of 4 rows by four columns, with marks evenly spread and not too close to the plot border. We then moved markings if necessary, created shallow holes, and placed one to two seeds in each hole. The seeds were then covered with a 1/4 inch layer of soil and a popsicle stick identifying the plant was placed in the plot. This process was used for the carrots, radishes, peas and spinach.
After all the seeds were planted, the whole bed was watered. We then checked to make sure all of the seeds were still covered by soil. Vegetables need an inch of water a week to stay healthy, thus, we are continuing to water the bed at least once a day, depending on the weather. Water with a light spray so the seeds are not displaced. We suggesting placing a rain gauge in your garden and feeling the soil to help determine how much to water and when.
This, of course, is a suggestion and guide for planting all of your seeds in a single 4’x8′ bed. If you choose to change the order or plant your seeds in different beds that’s up to you and your students! If you discover something or try something new that works well, please share with us so we can spread the word to others.
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Fall Planting Photos!