WS (container) vs DS (overwintering)? Kale, carrots etc

emcd124(5)January 22, 2012

I have been reading and learning as much about WS as I can. I'm really excited. A few questions have come up as I am now furiously planting in my doctored recyclables, particularly about WS vs DSOW (direct sow over wintering)

1. I read on here that edible root veges (carrot, radish, beets etc) do not tend to do well WS (container) because of disturbed roots? Have people had any luck just direct sowing them into the garden soil under the snow? Wait for spring? Or have others been lucky with transplanting from the WS containers?

2. what about leafy edibles? Specifically: kale, arugula, spinach, swiss chard, lettuces. The seem more delicate when small, and I'm unsure how to transplant them if I WS them. Would they work (or work better?) if I just DSOW them? Or some version of using newspaper pots or toilet rolls to make individual pots within the WS milkjug?

HUGE THANKS! This community is amazing!

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Hi EM...

If you WS root veggies they are best transplanted when quite small, just like all other WS seedlings. I generally get my root veggies transplanted when they are no more than an inch high, and usually they are smaller than that.

The problems with direct sowing is that seeds are food. Critters, bugs and birds will find them. There's not always going to be a snow cover and exposed seeds are quickly found by birds. Burroughing bugs and vermin can find the seeds anytime they are active and the ground isn't so frozen that they can't tunnel through it.

In my own garden I know that I have field mice despite there being cats and a dog that have run of the yard, the mice are a problem with eating seeds and very newly sprouted seeds in the ground. You know your garden best and your critter or bug populations can be different from mine or anyones garden. I'll suggest that you try both methods, do some WS and do some DS and see how that works out for you, compare the differences not just at germination time, but when you thin the DS or transplant the WS, then later on when you begin cropping.

    Bookmark   January 22, 2012 at 11:59AM
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