Living in spreadsheet land

The next step for me in planning for the season is ordering seeds. My seed catalogs start coming in the mail in December since then I’ve been pouring over them and choosing what I want to grow thing next year.  There are so many different options to choose from that it is hard to narrow so I don’t grow 40 different type of heirloom tomatoes.

Below are a couple screenshots of what I look at for roughly two weeks straight.
I like to think that I have a pretty good system for planning everything, but the planning process take some time. Below is what my seed ordering list looks like. On the bottom on that picture are all the carrots I order for example. I choose different varieties based on what does better at different times of the year or what varieties are more productive, easy to harvest, and healthier for me. Sometimes I will pick something new just spreadsheetto try something new. Then based on how much row feet I want to grow I can figure out how many seeds I need then I look in my seed catalogs for what to order. The worst part of that process is that the seed companies will switch their measuring quantities between number of seeds, ounces, and grams. Why they do this, I do not know, but it is annoying. Especially when looking for the best price between seed companies.

Another step is figuring out planting successions for things like lettuce, cutting greens, radishes,
and carrots. Here is what the planting schedule for lettuce looks like for this next year. Granted, I like to grow a lot of different types of lettuce, which does not help simplify the process. I have a new round of lettuce to plant every other week and I choose different varieties to plant based on their heat tolerance. lettuce planSo there are 5 different varieties that I plant each planting in the spring that will be different to the 5 varieties I start in the summer. It can take me over 30 minutes just to do one crop.

In the end I will spend close to $3000 on seeds for the coming season. It is one of my bigger expenses, but I’ve found that it is worth spending a little more money on better varieties of plants because their productivity is worth it in the end. I love getting the boxes of seeds in the mail after I’ve order the seeds. It feels like Christmas has arrived for the farm. In the picture you can see one of the boxes 20160201_090253I received this morning with lots of seeds and it was odd to think that there was almost $900 worth of seeds in the box. However, it is even harder to wrap my mind around everything those seeds will produce in just 6 months.





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