Nyack Commmunity Garden

Garden Class on seeding and tools

A week or so ago we held a garden class where we planted the Elegance Greens Mix from Johnny’s. This mix is mostly different mustard varieties (Brassica species) that grow fast and like cool weather, perfect for spring and fall. Most of what people call Asian greens are different mustard species, so this mix has those greens, plus a few leafy cabbages. You can sow the seed very densely and then harvest the greens using your scissors, you might get 3-5 harvests from one planting. Eat the flowers as well, they’re delicous.

The key to getting good germination is keeping your soil moist for the first few days and making sure your seeds have good contact with the soil. A good trick is to put a fine layer of some soil mix on top of the garden soil, then make your shallow row, 1/4” say, in that fine soil. Sprinkle the seed in the row, cover with fine soil, and tamp that down. Water each day, unless it’s raining, and you’ll get good germination.

We also talked about hoes. There are many different kinds of hoes, some for digging, some for weeding, some for mixing. We have two kinds of weeding hoes in our shed. One is called a stirrup hoe or shuffle hoe:

stirrup hoe

This one cuts the weeds at the soil surface, using a back-and-forth motion, thus shuffle hoe. You can weed an entire plot very quickly with this hoe.

The second one is called a goose neck hoe or half moon hoe:

goose neck hoe

This one is great for fine weeding, like in and around big plants. You cut the weeds at the soil surface by pulling it towards you.

Use the right tool for the job!

Brian O.