The downside: This just provides more fodder for the “global warming” snarkers, who tend to be melodramatically literal when it comes to that phrase.
The upside: Now I look like the smart one for not having sliced and diced the roses! Despite the freaky weather, it’s actually time to start planting some stuff outside, as wholly unappealing as THAT sounds this morning. (Current temperature: 36 degrees. Forecasted high for the day: 36 degrees. Current mood: Fine, you know what? I'm going back to bed. Forecasted mood for the day: Wake me up in April. IF YOU DARE.)
Yep, according to my expert resources, those of us who live in the Pacific Northwest can begin sowing the following seeds outside:
- Many types of lettuce and other leafy greens (unless you, like me, find leafy greens wholly uncooperative)
- Asparagus (shoot (ha!), I really wanted to plant asparagus this year and haven’t moved on it -- can I plant it as late as the first weekend in April, fellow PNW gardeners?)
- Beets (ew)
- Carrots (some year I will try them in pots)
- Peas (yay! yay! yay!)
- Parsnips (delicious and strange)
- Potatoes (could be fun)
- Radishes (overrated)
- Turnips (underrated)
- Chives (pretty)
- Cilantro (pukey)
- Parsley (munchable)
Chives and parsley are also two favorites of mine. I almost never eat either one, but I love letting my chives to go flower because the flowers are so pretty (see photo above), and parsley is nice to munch on when I’m out watering things in the summer. Refreshing and chompy.
Cilantro I’m allergic to (hence the description of it as "pukey"), but my husband loves it so maybe I should humor him and put some in this year.
Early spring is also a good time to pick up new fruit trees and get them planted -- just make sure the danger of frost is past, or that you’ve got plans on how to protect your yard noobs from extremely cold nights (reminder: it snowed several inches in Seattle last April, so don’t think it’s all over just because you’ve turned another calendar page!). We planted blueberries in our yard two springs ago right about this time, and both bushes are really thriving.It's a real thrill getting to pick and eat my own blueberries, and I'm eager to see how the raspberry I planted last year will do this year as well.
Berries -- man, hurry UP, summertime!!
Also doable this March: trim back your woody herbs (lavender, rosemary, and sage, in particular), fertilize trees and shrubs (including rhodies, which I really need to do soon), start prepping your veggie beds for planting next month, and when you’re done working outside, go back inside and start sowing your tomato seeds in containers to get them ready to go outdoors in about 6-8 weeks. If you’ve never planted golden/yellow cherry tomatoes before, I urge you to give them a shot this year -- almost as delicious as berries, and just about as sweet too!!
Still having trouble getting yourself motivated to work outside in the rain, snow, sleet, and hail? Dudes, I hear you. In that case, maybe you need to spend another couple of weeks looking at seed catalogs and day-dreaming instead. To that end, allow me to present you with this list of the Top 10 Most Productive Crops for the Pacific Northwest (from Mother Earth News):
- Pole snap bean
- Snow/snap pea
- Cherry tomato
- Summer squash