Remember the grand plans I had for our gigantic garden? A big crazy mix of vegetables, all heirloom varieties, being grown in an organic plot. Birds singing, a rainbow overhead.
Through the winter I lovingly started the seeds in seed trays and set them in a sunny window, eagerly awaiting the tiny shoots that would eventually lead to delicious veggies on my plate and little jars of homemade baby food. We saved all our kitchen scraps and created a decent-sized compost supply. T spread a layer of decomposing leaves onto the plot, with plans to till it into the soil before we set the vegetable plants into the ground.

We bought a dehydrator to make our own dried seeds, fruit leathers, tofu jerky, potato and fruit chips and other goodies. We bought a vacuum sealer so we could store excess veggies in the freezer for winter meals. I researched homemade pasta sauce and salsa recipes for the abundance of tomatos we'd have with the THIRTY TWO tomato plants I was coaxing from the seed trays.

Once the perfect green shoots were big and healthy enough in their tiny seed trays, T and I added organic potting soil and transplanted them into peat pots; when the weather got warmer, we took them outside into the sun and waited for them to reach for the sky.

Instead, nearly all of them slowly turned white and wilty and fell over dead.


We are pretty sure it was something in the organic potting soil that lead to their demise. As they collapsed into their pots, so did my visions of sharing jars of pasta sauce with the neighbors and spooning homemade baby food into Austin's mouth. All that work, all that anticipation... laying leafless and dead at the bottom of the pots.

There are no words to express my disappointment.

- Antiope

5/18/2011 11:39:43 am

Well, peat pots suck. They retain far too much moisture anf have a tendency to get moldy. Also, plants that are started indoors need to be hardened off - meaning that you only bring them outside for a little while - a few hours - at a time, gradually extending the time they're outdoors until they can handle all the nasty eastern seaboard weather. By what you've described, i dont think it was the organic potting soil - I think it was a conbination of the peat pots and not being hardened off.

Your dream of a garden doesnt have to be over - most nurseries and even Walmart sell vegetable plants. They may nmot be heirloom but its better than nothing, right?


Leave a Reply.