Spring is just around the corner and I am R-E-A-D-Y.  I spent Sunday in the backyard getting particular seeds ready for the growing season, partly because it is really time to do that sort of thing, and partly because I am sorely impatient when it comes to starting new projects.  I just can’t wait until my garden is bursting forth with food for all!!

Ok, I’ll settle down a little. 

I have some practical seed organization tips for any of you who can’t resist buying those cute little seed packets.   I have confessed more than once my natural tendency toward frugality, so I’m sure you aren’t surprised to learn that I choose to grow things from seed because of the cost factor.  HOWEVER, I have only had about 40% success growing from seed in the past.  (Recall my previous confession about my habitual neglect of my plants’ thirst…)  And to answer your next question, YES, I am willing to ride hell-west-and-crooked to make this garden succeed.  It is, after all, expected to feed us throughout 2011 and beyond. 

Wanna know what I plan to grow?  Sure ya do.  Herbs: basil, parsley, sage, rosemary, thyme, mint and oregano.  Vegetables: cucumbers, tomatoes, squash, peppers, sugar snap peas, green beans, carrots, eggplant, and onions.  Leafy greens: arugula and spinach.  Flowers: lavender and marigolds. 

Did I mention that I have 75 square feet of garden to fill?  And no, with all of this in the list, I am still not going to fill the garden.  That’s okay, though. I gotta have room to walk through it and work, so there will be patches of veggies within the confines of the garden. 

I have decided to use the Square Foot Gardening technique for this venture, since it offers sound advice with the goal of minimizing effort and maximizing reward. (And I found an app to help me plan the garden space.)  I still have to purchase some soil components before I can grid off the area.  But so far I have bricked the border and installed a fancy fence just inside the brick to keep the dear Miss Mabel (our black lab) out of the goods. 

And now here’s the organization tip you’ve been waiting for (with bated breath, right?!):  Since I have a bajillion seed packets now, and some seeds (thyme!) are so incredibly small it makes me wonder how in the heck they ever found the seeds to begin with, I devised a plan for storage and seed preservation.  After all, an open packet of seeds is likely to be spilled.  I use the snack-size zip-top baggies for seed packets (the store-brand baggie, of course). The regular size seed packets fit perfectly in the bag – one bag per seed variety.  If your packet is larger, as some of mine are, simply fold it in half to fit. 

Get one of those photo storage boxes from Hobby Lobby or Michaels which are the perfect size to store all the seed bags.  The dividers that come with the box work great for separating different kinds of seeds, if you have a lot.  And since I have more bags of seeds than I realized, I also used the tiny return address sticker labels (Avery 8167) to put on the top corner of each bag so I can easily find the seeds I’m looking for.  Oh yeah, I alphabetized them too.  ;0  Did you really think I wouldn’t????

With the help of the Farmer’s Almanac, it looks like I need to go ahead and get my tomatoes and peppers started indoors.  So I planted a whole bunch of seeds today.  And I decided to go ahead and get my herbs going too.  Victoria is responsible for one pot of rosemary, at her request.  And the already sprouted seedlings?  Those are from Aaron’s Science Fair Project!!

So there it is, folks…my first step toward becoming an actual gardener.  Wish me luck!