Hellebore seedlings on their way to the meeting.
I had a great day yesterday meeting people I felt like I already knew. The gathering was the second SAGBUTT (Seattle Area Garden Bloggers United to Talk) meeting. This was the first one I was able to attend. It was fun to be able to put faces to names and everyone was very friendly and had so much garden knowledge.
Paula from Petunia's Garden did a great job of having the meeting planned and was very organized! She brought snacks, envelopes for seeds, plant pots, aloe vera divisions, coffee grounds and more I'm sure I forgot. We all introduced ourselves and told a little about ourselves and what we've already gotten started from seed this spring. It seems most everyone had started something or was getting ready to. The Gardeness from Garden Muse was there, as was "Molly" from Life on Tiger Mountain, Karen from Greenwalks, Bob from Bobsgarden.com, Curmudgeon from Weed Whackin' Wenches and our international guest Matron from Down on the Allotment, and her friend Debbie was there as well.
A few things I learned today:
- They don't have planting zones in the U.K. like we do in the United States, and Matron told us the climate where she lives is very similar to Washington state.
- I learned that giving your seedlings their daily "exercise" would help them to grow stronger. It's the movement that helps, and anything from gently flexing them to having a fan blowing would help. I never knew that even seedlings needed a workout! "No pain No produce" must be their workout motto.
- I learned that "liming" your peas is something to help them grow better.
- Freezing echinacea seeds in ice cubes helps them to germinate more easily.
- Old water cooler bottles make excellent cloches.
- Feeding your seedling chamomile tea is reported to help prevent damping off.
- And more that I probably forgot to write down.
Paula also showed us a great book "The New Seed Starters Handbook" by Nancy Bubel. It has lots of great information in it, and one I plan to buy.
Then it was time for a seed and plant swap. There was so much to choose from and everyone was extremely generous like all gardeners seem to be.
Look at just some of what I came home with!!
We spent almost 3 hours talking and swapping and I'm sure it would've gone on longer if we didn't have to leave the room we used at the Bellevue Public Library.
We discussed when and where our next meeting would be. It will be on Earth Day which is April 18th and Curmudgeon and Wingnut are setting up the details.
I want to say "Thank You!" again to everyone! I had a great time and I'm looking forward to the next meeting.