Letters to Gardening Friends, March 22, 2010

Dear Dee and Mary Ann and Gardening Friends Everywhere,

These early spring days are exciting times in my garden right now!

Last week, I planted peas right on schedule on St. Patrick’s Day. This year I went a little wild with the peas and planted three types of shelling peas – ‘Green Arrow', ‘Progress’, and ‘Lincoln”, along with some snow peas called ‘Melting Sugar’.

I also sowed seeds for three varieties of sweet peas, Lathyrus odoratus – ‘Pastel Sunset’, ‘Bouquet Blend’, and ‘Wedding Blush’, all from Botanical Interests. I mixed them together intentionally before I sowed them so when they bloom I will have no idea which is which and if I prefer one over the other. Oh, well, I’m sure I’ll like them all. I always do. I think more people should grow sweet peas, for the scent alone, so I decided to write about them in my newspaper column this week.

I also sowed seeds for spinach. Three varieties, again – ‘Space’, ‘Pelican’, and ‘Bordeaux’.

Later this week, I’ll sow seeds for lettuce and then when the moon begins to wane, I’ll plant radishes and onion sets.

Outside of the vegetable garden, I managed to find some time to do some clean up some of the perennials and enjoy more early spring blooms, like the dwarf daffodils pictured above. When  I'm working around  in the garden, and even when I'm not, I think about the garden designer I’m working with, wondering what the plan she is working on will include. I hope to hear from her early this week to set up a time to look at the plans for the first time. In the meantime, I’ve been reading the book she left for me when she came by last week to study the garden a bit more.

I hope you both had a good week and are getting a good start in your own gardens!

Hortifully yours,


P.S. – After I planted peas in my own garden, I planted peas for my sister and her husband in their garden the next day. I am the designated gardener in the family, so they call on me for help when they are in a pinch looking for some gardening help. I was happy to do it for them. I also took my mom a copy of the March issue of Indianapolis Woman magazine to show her the feature on gardeners, which includes a bit on me and my self-proclaimed world’s ugliest tomato. Remember when I grew that?


  1. Sowing peas on St. Patrick Day - I haven't heard of this timing before. It is according to which schedule?

  2. I like hearing what you do in the garden when, Carol. I don't remember if my moon was waxing or waning...I better go check so I can see if I need to worry or not LOL. H.

  3. I'm glad to hear that someone is planting. The ground is still way too wet here, sadly.

  4. I hadn't seen your ugly tomato before. That was...well, ugly. Love the update on the garden planting. The designated family gardener is an important title.

  5. The waning of the moon, huh? I guess I'll sow some lettuce then. I've been thinking about getting some started early.

  6. Carol, Space, Pelican and Bordeaux.. are some unique names for Spinach I never heard of them, I got to check those out.

    You are right about the " Wut" tomato It's the ugliest that I have every seen..

    It's so weird how the steam and tomato forms as it grows..giving it that deformed appearance.

    I don't think anyone is going to beat it! Yep I too" vote it the ugliest!

  7. I planted sweet peas this weekend as well! It's the first time I've ever done so. I'll be checking out your link on the moon with regards to gardening..that sounds very interesting.

  8. I do remember your WUT. Cool that you got into Indianapolis Woman. You're very deserving my friend. I'll have my letter up later today.~~Dee

  9. You are the third person I've read about in just 24 hours who has mentioned planting sweet peas. Although I haven't grown them since I was a child, I think it's a sign that I should plant some this year!
    I have love them since I grew them in my very first childhood garden patch. Thank you for that sweet memory and the reminder!

  10. Carol, my wife actually did some sweet peas at our backyard last summer, but we didn't get the result as we wanted :(

    Hope to hear more suggestions from others.

    Jay Chua
    Publisher, PorchSwingSets.com


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