Gardeners tend to plan around holidays…it’s easy to remember and you often have a little time off as well. Lots of folks around the country will plant a Good Friday garden, but Bill Finch with Mobile Botanical Gardens says that’s WAY too late for the Gulf Coast. He suggests planning and planting during the 12 Days of Christmas—between December 26th and January 6th.
Winter is a great time to plant beets, peas, and carrots. As we’ve discussed in other Plain Gardening episodes, leafy vegetables do well in winter, too.
After you’ve spent some time with catalogs determining what you’ll plant, it’s time to put seeds in the ground. Well, maybe not actual ground; Bill uses piles of leaves. Plain old leaves piled about 3-4 feet high will turn into about 8-12 inches of wonderful soil within a few months…you don’t have to do anything at all to them.
Even when the air temperature is very cold, the soil temperature in January will likely be in the 60s—perfect to germinate a lot of cool-season seeds.
Bill says this is all part of understanding the seasons of the Gulf Coast and taking advantage of them.
Mobile Botanical Gardens will have a special class on the Six Seasons of the Gulf Coast starting January 14th. Find out more at mobilebotanicalgardens.org.