April in Northern New Mexico is an iffy proposition. Temps this month have been as high as the mid-70's and as low as 22 degrees F., and when we first moved here I was told not to plant anything outside until June 1. The climate appropriate tomatoes and cabbage I duly planted on June 1 grew poorly due to the variable temperatures, the wind, hail, sleet, poor soil and something called a wintry mix. Of course, I didn't know anything about growing stuff up here, so that had a lot to do with my garden failures.
I started researching greenhouses and discovered the Growing Dome, mainly because I would have a year round growing environment and a warm place to visit in the dead of winter.
I am still learning the seasons inside the dome, with its warm and sometimes moist interior, a place that turns the notion of waiting until June 1 to plant summer veggies upside down. In March two volunteer tomato plants from last year popped up and they now have blossoms on them.
The winter veggie seeds were replanted in late October, after a mishap in September when four beef cattle found their way through the dome's open door, circled around and somehow shut themselves in. Chaos and destruction ensued. No bueno. So now we have winter stuff still growing even though I want to get more warm weather stuff in our growing beds. It's a nice quandary to have, though, because we have fresh produce right here at home.
What I will do is tuck warm weather veggie seeds and plants into the spots vacated by the cool weather ones. The lettuce here is almost done, and the snap peas and beets will go soon, too. My baby tomato seedlings (Amy's Sugar Gem and Stupice) will go here, but I must research to be sure tomatoes like onions next to them, since I just planted those onion guys in between the beets and the lettuce.
Trudy wanted to see how broccoli looks on the plant, so here you go, Trude!
Below you can see where I have cut the center flower (and we ate it last week). You can see smaller shoots forming where the leaves connect with the main stalk.
Brussels sprouts roasted on the stalk right here.
Okay, what else..Oh, yeah! I replanted these Earth Boxes with a a lemon thyme plant on the right and some rosemary on the left back at the end of October and they did fine all winter long. I need to give the thyme a good shearing because it is blooming. The black water tank is just behind the boxes, the warmest place in the dome during winter because the sun hits the black sheet metal and makes it toasty right there. The marks on the sheet metal are from the steers' hooves, which I think hit the tank as they were going round and round.
So we did okay this winter in the Growing Dome; even Manny, Moe and Jack, the fishies, survived.
On the rebuilt side of the dome, which Tom finished earlier this month, we have tomatoes, Poona Kheera cucumbers, lettuce, green beans, radishes and kale. At the end of April our local nursery opens and I will buy some pepper and chile pepper plants and perhaps a few other things that strike my fancy.
But that is for another time. Cheers, and happy springtime to you all.