Thursday, January 12, 2012

Garden Journal 1/12/12: Crazy Winter Weather

Southern half of the snowy kitchen garden -
Southern half of the raised bed kitchen garden, as seen this afternoon from the second floor of the new house!

Yesterday it was sunny and in the 50s. I ditched my massive indoor afternoon To Do list in favor of digging chicken manure into a couple of garden beds and working on a compost pile—in January.

Today it's blustery, snowing, and, at last check, 22 degrees. When I looked at the online weather page this morning it said it was 18 degrees but felt like four. Tonight we'll probably see single digit temps, and on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday it's supposed to be 50.

Welcome to winter in Missouri!

So is it snowing or growing in your January garden? Any big planting plans for this year?

©, where it's definitely time to cozy up under a vintage quilt and finish the rest of that seed order. Weather ups and downs or not, planting time will be here all too soon.


  1. So far winter has not shown up here in lower Alabama.

  2. No snow here, but the temperature is dropping,a nd last night we had thunder. Local "wisdom" says that thunder in winter is a sign of snow in the next 7-10 days. I've got my fingers crossed. Otherwise the first garden catalogs came in recently so I've gotta get that thinking cap on soon!

  3. Very warm here today, wearing a straw hat.
    All the corms and bulbs are coming up.

  4. I got the wacky weather too.. my bulbs had already sprouted their leaves before this snow! What will happen to them this year? Is there anything I should do to help them re-bloom in (real) spring?

  5. Congratulations on the new room with a view!

    Farmgirl, please share your seed order(s). Am dreaming here and any inspiration is always appreciated! Stay warm.

    1. Cary,
      That's a great idea. Makes me wonder why I haven't been posting my seed orders all these garden blogging years - especially since I would then know where to find them in the future, lol.

      Will do - just as soon as I actually get them finished. . . :)

  6. The same thing has happened here in Wisconsin! Yesterday I was doing yard work and thinking of letting the chickens out of their winter quarters, and this morning it's 17 degrees with half a foot of snow on the ground and rain in the upcoming forecast. So far it's been one of the strangest winters I can remember.

  7. we have similar temperature swings in washington state, too. one day in the high 40s and the next 3 days in the 20s! however, we've had no snow yet, and all my greens are still going. and i've taken advantage of the late real freeze to get my garlic planted this season still.

  8. Hi, Farmgirl!

    Love to read your posts. We have kales, lettuce and broccoli in my first ever winter garden. I'm in Tulsa and our winter has been pretty erratic - highs in the 30s one day and then in the upper 50s and low 60s the next. Can't complain, though, we haven't had any massive ice storms so far.

    Love your recipes, too! They're inspiring the inner baker in me. :)

  9. Our winter in Western Washington has been shockingly mild - so far. They're calling for flurries over the next few days but it doesn't sound like anything substantial. It's staying in the mid-20s overnight, good for killing all the gnats that hatched during a warming trend a couple of weeks ago. Nothing is growing in our garden, save weeds, but this is the perfect time to start planning for our summer garden redesign!

  10. Hi! I'm on the Gulf Coast of Texas and winter gardening is great here! I had to finally pick all of my tomatoes last night due to a forecast of a freeze. I have tomatoes all over my kitchen. I look forward to roasting them and freezing any that don't get eaten up! Fall tomatoes are so much easier here than spring - fewer bugs and less disease to contend with. I also have cabbage, cauliflower, collard greens, chard, carrots, beets, lettuce, turnips, fennel, garlic, shallots, leeks and herbs growing. I also just planted sugar snap and snow peas. I even have two pepper plants (banana and yellow bell) still producing so I can't see pulling them yet.

    Our weather is erratic around here. Earlier this week it was 75, last night a freeze. Thank goodness we are finally getting rain after our terrible drought through the spring, summer and fall last year.

    I love your blogs. You've inspired me to bake bread which my husband loves! I look forward to each posting, thanks.

  11. I was shocked to harvest the last of my fall crop of head lettuce earlier this January. It still looked really food and I thought I has pushed my Virginia weather luck by leaving it over Christmas. We too have had crazy 50 degree days followed by thunder snow. But taking a quick survey around yesterday I saw NEW mesclun coming up!!

    I doubt that it will amount to any spectacular head, but it's a reminder of how amazingly persistent nature can be!

  12. What do you use the sawhorse for in that bed?

  13. Hi Everybody,
    Thanks for your newsy comments. It's so much fun hearing about gardens and weather all around the country! :)

  14. were brave to get out and work in the weather..but if it needs done...get the clothes on and get it done is what I say. We had a little taste of cold weather..but it is better than the grey grey rain. I am just about ready to bite the bullet and order some of seeds I've been looking at ...penquin gourds, and some of those Fortex beans everybody raves about. I have a lot of seed stashed in the freezer..but ordering new is more fun than digging out the old.

  15. Snow at the moment, though it's been weirdly mild the rest of the winter.

    My big planting plans this year are probably going to include a cover crop, as I'm expecting a baby in July (surprise!). Really bad timing for gardening. A pared-down garden seems to be in order, though I won't give up on it entirely. Never.

  16. We've been getting the same weather here and I'm in NW Pennsylvania! Winter finally showed up a couple days ago and I'm hoping this time it's here to stay. (I see no point in mopping all the floors when the entire driveway is mud. Oh and we have a dog. lol)

  17. The tiniest bit of snow on the ground here, but an unusually small amount for Minnesota winters! I'm envious of your large garden! With winter coming late here, I managed to dig out a new garden and plant garlic this fall, but the space is nothing compared to yours.
    x Katherine

  18. Thanks to discovering this blog (thru Pinterest) I am going to sow my lettuce the last weekend of february. I loved seeing your plot of mixed greens. I plan to buy into a share at a community garden to grow sunflowers; and in my home garden i will grow peas, lettuce, radish, carrots, cabbage and broccoli. squash and tomatoes of course...a few peppers and onions. but lots of flowers. thats my best farmers market item. at least until i get better at food! Love this blog.


March 2013 update: My apologies for the inconvenience - I know word verification is a pain - but I've had to turn it on to help stop the ridiculous number of anonymous spam comments I've been getting every day. Thanks for your understanding.

Welcome to! Thanks so much for taking the time to write. While I'm not always able to reply to every comment, I receive and enjoy reading them all.

Your feedback is greatly appreciated, and I especially love to hear about what's going on in your own garden. I know, too, that other readers also delight in reading about your garden successes, failures, helpful tips, and lessons learned. Feel free to leave comments on older posts!

I try my best to answer all questions, but sometimes it takes me a few days to get to them. And sometimes, I'm sorry to say, they fall through the cracks, and for that I sincerely apologize.

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