The 2023 return of Angry Man Farm

February 20, 2023

We call our backyard garden Angry Man Farm. It’s because of a long running joke between WM and me that so many farms are named pleasant names like Fox Run and Sunflower Hill that we ever owned a farm, we’d name it something humorous and realistic. Thus, Angry Man Farm was born in 2018 when we moved in and started an herb garden.

What I’m learning about gardening is that the more you do it, the more confusing it gets. Take last frost date, for example. For the last few years, I’ve been using May 1 – May 10 as my last frost date.

However, last year, as my peppers continued to produce fruit well into October and were going strong until a cold snap occurred, I realized that maybe, MAYBE, I could have planted these a bit earlier so I’d have summer veggies in actual summer. But how was I supposed to do this if the last frost date is May 10?

A few months ago I searched for last frost date again, and found another source says its April 4.

Screw it. Climate change is happening, it was 60 degrees outside today and I’m starting my seeds in February instead ofMarch.

My soil test came back decent which, great!

Results from the soil test. All nutrients are there and some levels are sky high, but the soil is lagging in magnesium, and sulfur. Soil pH is 7.0, optimal range tops at 6.8

The site recommended I use Blood Meal 12-0-0 to fertilize. That’s all I needed to know. I’ll buy that next month and mix it into the soil.

All of the above meant that this weekend I cleaned up my gardening table in the garage and started my tomato and pepper seeds. In February! The plastic seed starting tray I bought in 2018 is pretty banged up now, so I’m upgrading to these trays from Burpee.

Burpee SuperSeed Pop-Out Reusable Seed Starting Tray. Holds 16.

I have two and will buy two more next month. They are much sturdier than the old plastic tray and I’m hoping they last a very long time. Each cell is larger so I won’t feel rushed to transplant them as early as I have been. I also really like the fact that the rows and columns are marked like an Excel spreadsheet. Since the soil starter pellets I have been using were made for my smaller plastic tray I cut a bunch of them out of their netting before soaking them in water and just scooped the soil into the cells. And voila!

28 little cells filled with dirt and seeds
Peppers on the left, Tomatoes on the right.

Last year’s seed heat mats still work and we are ready to grow! I’m sticking with the same seeds I used last year. They’re a little older, but I plant multiple ones in each cell in case they don’t all germinate. And I really need to stop buying so many things and use what I have.

notepad with seed varieties on it, description is in the text below
I’ve been using my Vagenda of Manocide notepads since 2016.

Tomatoes: Bodacious, Super Tasty, Baby Boomer (cherry), and the fourth generation of what we call the Angry Man Farm varietal. They are seeds harvested from the descendants of the Roma cherry tomatoes planted in 2018.

Peppers: Jalapeno and Sweet Bell

In September, WM and I planted a row of tulip bulbs in front of the house and they are already poking up through the soil! Let’s go spring! Is it too early to set up my hammock?

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