Worth The Risk

I sowed some vegetables in my garden Monday night. I blended our potting soil with Sea Soil (50/50) into a couple of my raised containers and sowed Nantes carrots into one and Cylandra beets into the other. Both carrots and beets grow beautifully in cool weather and shrug-off frost with ease. Last year, I sowed my carrots on April 30th and roasted my first carrots on June 9th. With any luck this year, I might be lucky enough to have a few skinny carrots by late May.

The other vegetable that I sowed was a corn variety called Bodacious. Now, I admit that April 18th is a very early sowing date for corn in our part of the world. But, when I was growing up on our vegetable farm we would often sow corn in late April or early May when the weather permitted. Yes, we will likely get frost in the next few weeks but the corn seed is protected beneath the soil surface from frost and besides if the corn seedlings emerge and then freeze, the growing point remains below the surface and will regenerate new growth show frost hit.

But let’s face it, we could get a bout of very cold weather and the corn could rot in the ground. However, it took me about 15 minutes to sow a three dollar package of corn seed. If the corn dies, I will sow it again. 

My Mom summed it up best when it comes to planting corn. With corn being a long season crop she would often say, “If you plant early you risk a bit of seed but you can easily re-sow.  If you put your corn in late, you’re almost guaranteed to lose it to a fall frost before you can harvest a single cob. What would you rather have?” 

Mom’s words of wisdom are always in my mind whenever I put a seed in the ground.

~Jim Hole