Category Archives: Seeds

Fall Gardening Hints

Beautiful broccoli, luscious kale, flavor-enhancing leeks, exotic winter radishes, and other cool season vegetables are all signs of fall!

Cool season vegetables, especially those with longer days to maturity (time from sowing to unnamedharvest) are better when grown in fall, because the weather is reliably cooler than spring, which can heat up fast. Even though the garden soil in late summer can still be too warm

Beautiful broccoli, luscious kale, flavor-enhancing leeks, exotic winter radishes, and other cool season vegetables are all signs of fall!

Cool season vegetables, especially those with longer days to maturity (time from sowing to harvest) are better when grown in fall, because the weather is reliably cooler than spring, which can heat up fast. Even though the garden soil in late summer can still be too warm to germinate some cool season crops, you can still start them indoors and transplant them out when it’s cooler.

Tips for fall sowing planning:
  • Mark your average first fall frost date on a calendar.
  • Look on your seed packet for “Days to Maturity” or use our Outdoor Sowing Guide for Late Summer/Fall. Soils may be hot, and quick to dry in summer, so you may consider starting some fall crops indoors or creating some shade over the garden bed. Some cool season crops like lettuce and spinach will not germinate in soils over 80°F or 85°F respectively, so you may want to start them inside if the soil is still too warm. However, root crops should always be direct-sown.
  • From your average first fall frost date, count backwards the number of days to maturity, which will bring you to your ideal sowing date. Move your sowing date up 1 to 2 weeks to accommodate cool growing temperatures and shorter days that may slow growth, unless you plan to use season extension techniques like row covers. Most cool season varieties have a sweeter flavor after a frost, as cool weather increases the sugar content in these varieties in order the help them survive cool temperatures.
  • Mark your calendar with variety sowing dates, and use it year after year to germinate some cool season crops, you can still start them indoors and transplant them out when it’s cooler.

April in the Garden

Spring has sprung despite the unpredictable April weather. It is a busy time as we all rush around to put those finishing touches on our gardens, flowerbeds and lawns.  Here are a few things that you should pay attention to this month.20160328_153545

  • If you have not already done so, April is a great month to top dress your lawn, garden, and flower beds.Feed trees, shrubs and hedges.  Roses are greedy plants and will greatly benefit from feeding as they come into growth.  We offer a full  line of balanced fertilizers or you can get a delivery of our Cow Compost or Turkey Compost to add to your flower beds.

 

  • With the summer heat lurking, it is also a great time to mulch your garden and flower beds. You can save yourself some labor and time by using Geo Grower’s Magic Mulch to conserve moisture in your flowerbeds. Magic mulch is a mix of composed cow manure and shredded hardwood mulch to help you get the most out of your flowerbeds during our hot summers

 

  • .If you are using the mild April weather to install a new lawn, Geo Growers offers Thunder Dirt to create a stable and fertile base for all your grass planting.

 

  • Lift and divide perennial plants now to improve their vigor and create new plants for your garden.

 

  • It is not too late to plant trees. Geo Growers can provide you with a supply of Geo Tree Mix to give your trees the best chance of surviving the hot summer months.

 

  • Check that your container plants are not drying out – warm weather will quickly affect soil moisture levels.

 

  • Check that your container plants are not drying out – warm weather will quickly affect soil moisture levels.

 

What to Plant in April:

SEEDS:
EARLY APRIL:
Vegetables:  Lima beans, snap beans, beets, chard, okra, black-eyed peas, radishes,
New Zealand spinach, summer squash

LATE APRIL:
Vegetables:
Cantaloupe, sweet corn, cucumber, eggplant, pumpkin, watermelon

Herbs:
Anise, basil, bay, catnip, chives, comfrey, cumin, fennel, fenugreek, scented geranium, germander, horehound, lamb’s ear, lavender, lemon grass, lemon verbena, Mexican mint marigold, oregano, rosemary, sage,santolina, summer savory, winter savory, sorrel, southernwood, tansy, tarragon, thyme,
wormwood

Annuals:
Cleome, Coleus, Coreopsis, Cosmos, Gourds, Hyacinth Bean Vine, Impatiens, Moonflower Vine, Periwinkle, Sunflower, Tithonia, Zinnias.


 

PLANTS
Vegetables:
Eggplant, pepper, summer squash, sweet potato slips, tomatillo,Tomatoes

LATE APRIL:
Vegetables:
Cantaloupe, sweet corn, cucumber, eggplant, pumpkin, watermelon

Herbs:
Anise, basil, bay, catnip, chives, comfrey, cumin, fennel, fenugreek, scented geranium, germander, horehound, lamb’s ear, lavender, lemon grass, lemon verbena, Mexican mint marigold, oregano, rosemary, sage,santolina, summer savory, winter savory, sorrel, southernwood, tansy, tarragon, thyme,
wormwood

Perennials:
Black-eyed Susan, Coneflower, Daisies,  Lantana, Plumbago, Salvia, Yarrow,

Tomato Time

I know the last official frost date for our area is March 20, but it is definitely time to be thinking tomatoes here in Central Texas.  Here are some helpful hints!!

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With so many tomato varieties and uses in the kitchen, it’s no wonder tomatoes are one of our most popular vegetables! We receive a lot of customer requests for additional tips and tricks on sowing and growing the best tomatoes.
When to start tomatoes
Start tomatoes indoors 4 to 6 weeks before average last spring frost, and transplant them out when daytime temperatures are at least 45°F, and soil temperature is ideally 70 – 90 degrees.

In mild climates/hot summer areas, tomatoes are transplanted in December-April or July-Feb. Contact your county extension office or a local independent garden center for the best time for your area.

Containers

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Use shallow, sterile containers with drainage (4- or 6-pack at a garden center). Transplant into larger, 3″-4″ containers once the true, scalloped leaves have emerged. Biodegradable paperboard pots (link) are the ideal size, easy to label, and easy to share with friends. Geo Growers Thunderhead Potting Soil is great for transplanting tomatoes or for growing them in containers.
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Use a lightweight seed starting mix/media, and sow seeds at a shallow, 1/8″-1/4″ depth. Seed-starting mix is sterile (unlike garden soil) and lighter than potting mix, allowing for the ideal air-to-moisture ratio. Geo Growers highly recommends Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix for all your seed starting needs.
Transplanting and Supporting
When transplanting seedlings outside, either 1) plant them deeply, burying the stem leaving 1-2 sets of leaves above ground; or 2) set each plant almost horizontally in the ground leaving 2 sets of leaves above ground. The buried part of the stem will sprout roots and develop a strong, extensive root system. The top of the seedling above ground will naturally reach toward the sun aprod_156551007nd right itself. Place any stakes, cages, or other type of supports in the ground just after transplanting to avoid root damage. It is a good idea to plant each tomato plant with 1/4 of rock phosphate.
Growing Temperature
Temperatures above 55°F at night are required for fruit set. Night temperatures above 75°F in the summer inhibit fruit set and can cause blossom drop (no fruit production). Wait until night temperatures are at least 45°F before transplanting.
Water
Tomatoes need about 1″-2″ of water per week, depending on the type of soil they are growing in. 1 or 2 deep soakings per week in mild weather, and 2 or 3 per week in hot weather should be sufficient. If tomatoes are cracking, back off on the water. Too much water can burst tomatoes and water down the flavor.
Harvesting
Each variety is different when it comes to color. Check your seed packet to see when the tomato is ripe.
Tomato Types
Tomatoes are grouped into two main types according to growth habit and production. DETERMINATE types (e.g., Ace 55GlacierItalian Roma) grow in a compact, bush form, requiring little or no staking. Fruit is produced on the ends of the branches; most of the crop ripens at the same time. One or more successive plantings will ensure an extended harvest period. Determinate types are often the choice of those who want a large supply of ripe fruit at once for canning. INDETERMINATE (e.g., Better BushSun GoldBlack Krim) varieties continue to grow and produce fruit all season until first frost. Tomatoes in all stages of development may be on the plants at one time. The plants set fruit clusters along a vining stem, which grows vigorously and long. Under optimum conditions, some can grow over 15′, but in most home gardens they generally reach about 6′. Some indeterminates have a bush form with stockier vines, which set fruit clusters closer together. In between these two types are the SEMI-DETERMINATE (e.g., Lizzano). The plants will grow larger than determinate varieties, but not as large as indeterminate. They produce a main crop that ripens at once, but also continue to produce up until frost.

It is Most Definitely Seed Time

Seed time is finally here. Geo Growers has a rack full of seeds from Botanical Interests, Johnny’s Selected Seeds, and Seed Saver’s Exchange.

Due to the high demand of the season, seeds are flying off the racks and into the gardens of our customers. The great news is that Geo Growers has partnered with Botanical Interests to ensure that you can get the seeds you want even if the crowds have rushed in and cleaned us out.

Geo Growers has become an affiliate of Botanical Interests. All you have to do is click on picture  below and order your seeds directly from Botanical Interests. images

If you like, click HERE and bookmark the page so you can come back whenever you like to order seeds.

 

The Seeds Are HERE!!!

It has been a long time coming, but I just saw the box from

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That means all new seeds for the up coming gardening season are here. Everything from veggies, to herbs, to gourds of all types.

Stop on in pick up those seeds that you have been waiting for!!!

Don’t forget to pickup your Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Soil while you are here. It is a great medium for all seed starting.

January In The Garden

January here in Central Texas can be cold and full of freezing surprises.  There are plenty of garden chores that you can do to keep yourself in that gardening mood.
  • Disconnect hoses from exterior faucets. If frost precedes an extended period ofIMG_3137-001 freezing weather, shut off water to spigots. Drain any water remaining in the line. Install insulated spigot covers if necessary.
  • Drain and coil hoses.. Store hoses in a frost-free location, if possible. If not, remove all watering wands, nozzles or quick-connects and store these items in a frost-free spot.
  •  You can also till the vegetable garden just before a hard freeze to expose insects that have burrowed into soil for winter.
  •  Cover plants that can’t take frost.
It is also a good time to start prepping your garden beds. Build and fill new beds with our Thunder Garden Soil Mix, or revitalize existing beds with 2-3 inches of our Double Thunder Soil, Cow Compost, or Turkey Manure.
Things to Plant this Month:
SEEDS:
Vegetables: Radish.  If you want to grow your own transplants, it’s time to start tomato and pepper seeds indoors.
Annuals: Alyssum, Coneflower, Delphinium, Larkspur, Snapdragon

Late January:
Vegetables: Beets Carrot, leek, leaf lettuce, parsnip, garden pea, rutabaga, spinach, shallot. Asian Greens, Lettuce Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Collards, Kale, Kohlrabi,

Annuals: Poppies & Sweetpea
PLANTS:
Vegetables:  Artichoke crowns, asparagus crowns, broccoli, cabbage, kohlrabi, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard, Onion sets, Spinach

Herbs: Chervil, chives, cilantro, oregano, parsley, rosemary, sage, thyme.

Fruit: Strawberries

An Early Reminder….

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I know it is still January and the weather is still probably going to take a cooler turn at some point, but even I am starting to think about seed starting and other indoor gardening activities.  So here is gentle reminder on how to find Thunderhead Potting Soil. The Thunderhead Original is great for all types of vegetables and plants, and I personally recommend the Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix for all your seed starting.

So here is a not so gentle nudge about where to find the best darned potting soil around!!!

The best place to find your supply of Thunderhead Original and Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix is right here at Geo Growers.

If you are no where close to us, but still want to find your favorite potting soil, here are some locations that carry Thunderhead Soil.

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The Natural Gardener Carries Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix 

 

 

 

 

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Barton Springs Nursery carries  both Thunderhead Original and Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix. 

 

 

 

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Breed & Company carries both Thunderhead Original and Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix

 

 

 

 

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Tillery Street Plant Company carries Thunderhead Original.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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And Planet K locations all across Austin carryThunderhead Original.

 

 

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The Great Outdoors carries Thunderhead Original and Thunderhead Cactus & Succulent Mix.

 

 

 

So find a retailer that suits your needs and get your Thunderhead Potting Soil Today!!!

Save the Monarch

Save the Monarch

 There has been a 90% drop in the population of the Monarch Butterfly in the United States over the past 20 years – and there is something gardeners can do to make a big difference in the demise. monarch-butterfly-1920x1080-DT

We all recognize the iconic Monarch butterfly with its majestic orange and black wings. Butterflies are more than just beautiful; they are beneficial to the environment and your garden. Butterflies pollinate plants that produce about one-third of the food that we eat. They flutter from plant to plant drinking nectar, and as they move, they take pollen with them. The pollen is deposited on other plants, helping with the continuation and growth of many plant species. The presence of butterflies also signals a healthy environment. Because they are very sensitive to pesticides, if you keep an organic garden, chances are that butterflies and other beneficial insects like ladybugs and bees, which eat plant-damaging insects like aphids, will be present as well. That’s good for the overall life and health of your garden!

Unfortunately, the butterfly we all know and love is losing its habitat, specifically milkweed, to modern farming methods and population development. The Monarchs are the only North American butterflies that make a 3,000-mile migration to fall_TXpathwaysBMexico and California for the winter, taking 6-8 generations to complete the journey. The fragmentation of milkweed in their migratory path is significant because milkweed is the only host plant where Monarchs lay their eggs, and the sole food source for their larvae. With fewer host plants, their population is suffering as a result-90 percent decline over the last 20 years. Their population decline is so significant that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing to determine if the butterfly should be classified as “threatened” under the Federal Endangered Species Act.

As home gardeners, we can help to replenish the butterfly habitat by sowing milkweed/butterfly flower.  Our goal – Butterfly flower in every garden!

Be A Butterfly Hero

Be a Butterfly Hero!

Pollinators, including the Monarch butterfly, are responsible for much of the food we eat. In recent years, butterflies have been losing their habitat to agricultural practices, development, and cropland conversion. But we can help!

Join Botanical Interests, our seed packet supplier, in supporting the National Wildlife Federation’s efforts to be a Butterfly Hero. Send a picture of yourself making the butterfly sign in sign language to www.nwf.org/butterflyheroes, and you’ll receive a Butterfly Garden Starter kit, including a Botanical Interests seed packet, while supplies last. The kit inspires engagement with nature and encourages participants to send follow up photos through Facebook and Twitter of kids and families, butterflies, and other animals observed in nature. unnamed

As home gardeners, we can replenish the butterfly habitat by sowing butterfly-friendly varieties in our home, school, and community gardens. Pledge to be a Butterfly Hero on www.nwf.org/butterflyheroes  then visit Geo Growers to  purchase a butterfly friendly variety that we offer from Botanical Interests!

 

 

 

The Seeds Are HERE!!!

It may be chilly outside, but the new seeds have arrived at Geo Growers and they are warm and toasty inside our store.IMG_2989

There are all types of vegetables, herbs, and flower seeds to get the season started off in the best way possible.

New Peppers!

 

 

 

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New Flowers

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and all kinds of beans.

Stop on in and see what we have just for you!!