Live AND taped

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Planting seeds is the easy part of gardening. You poke a hole in the ground, you drop in the seed, you cover it up again. Then all you need is a little water to set the process in motion.

The hard parts of gardening are all peripheral to the actual planting of the seed. You need to know when to plant it, where to plant it, what to feed it, how much to water it, how ruthlessly to thin it (invariably more ruthlessly than you think), what to plant next to it, how to protect it from pests, and what steps to take when it stubbornly refuses to live up to your expectations.

The actual planting of the seed, though, is easy.

Foolproof!

Foolproof!

But when you plant a lot of them, and they’re supposed to be evenly spaced in a straight line, you can run into trouble. At least I did, last year, with the radishes. Not only did I plant them too close together, I managed to spill a whole bunch of them, so we grew a cluster of radishes just to the left of the row.

This year, I discovered a simple, elegant solution: seeds on tape. Seed companies simply attach the seeds, evenly spaced, to biodegradable tape. It’s genius! You dig a furrow and lay the tape in it, cover, and water. No spacing problems, no spills, no crooked rows. We planted carrots, beets, and radishes in under ten minutes.

Who thought of that? If there were a Nobel prize for gardening, I’d nominate him.

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Comments

  1. Cape Cod Rose says:

    Maybe it was a woman.

  2. CC Rose — It may very well have been. I wasn’t slighting my gender, though. It’s just that I am one of the last living proponents of the generic “he.” In this case, “him” means “him or her.” Honest.

  3. Accidental Mick says:

    Hi Tamar,
    I recently met a lady who has been generously endowed with birthdays and who stills grows flowers and veg.

    She is badly affected with artheritis and her hands shake badly so she finds planting seeds difficult. She was told about the “seeds on tape” and thought it a good idea but, being a child of the 1920s or 1930s, (I didn’t dare ask), she didn’t like the extra cost.

    She now buys her seeds in early January, buys cotton gause which she cuts into 1 inch strips and spends the long, dark evenings of Jan and Feb making her own “seeds on tape”.

    There are some amazing people out there.