Two days ago, after mixing up a batch of starter mix from peat moss and compost, I planted three flats of cole family seeds for fall and winter eating.
There were cabbages, kales, broccolis, cauliflowers, a wonderful italian green called minestra nera (or cavolo broccolo spigariello), pak choi, and chinese cabbage.
While they’re growing along in the flats, I’ll be prepping a nice bed for them to grow in. Good things will go in the dirt, “soil amendments”, like some wood ashes from last winter, plus some organic fertilizer. I’ll till those things in with a half ton or more of 99% pure, well-rotted meadow muffins. These plants are going to be very happy.
The warm and humid summer weather we’re having must be seed-amphetamine, for it didn’t take 48 hours for the seeds to show growth. It’s always exciting to see a hard, dry little seed take in water and burst into glorious, wet, green life.
After planting, I’d watered the flats. The flood of droplets from the broken watering can made some of the more shallowly planted seeds float to the surface of the soil. What this revealed about the seedling’s roots was fascinating. I knew that plants have roots, and rootlets, and root hairs. These fine root hairs are how the plant takes in moisture and nutrition. But in addition to these functions, it looks as if they can also help a new questing root power its way into the soil. The thousands of little root hairs grab and hold on to the surface soil particles, and thus help the root tip to push its way down into the ground.
I had no idea.
Who would have thought that root hairs were so beautiful?