At the very beginning of this blog I was concerned about knowing what specific growing zone that I was in, but to tell the truth, I really haven't heard or seen it discussed a whole lot in the local gardening forums around here. This led me to believe that gardeners simply go by instinct, by the signs of nature (the birds have arrived!), or by what their favorite garden shops tell them. My father-in-law, for example, wouldn't have a clue as to what I was talking about, and the last time he called for an update on the garden, all I knew is that he felt I had started my tomatoes too early. You see, he thought I had transplanted them into the ground whereas I had only started them indoors.
You might be thinking, well then how can they tell when the time is right? Not everyone is a born green thumb, so there must be some written indication, some credible source in which to refer to. In the previous post, Maybelline posed a couple of questions. Using an example of raperonzolo seeds (Campanula rapunculus), I thought it would make an interesting topic in a little show-n-tell:
Are there growing zones in Italy or is that just an American thing?
If there are, I'm curious to know what zone you are in?
On the map I've added a large dot where I'm at, and as you can see, it's in the blue as is most of the rest of Italy. Taking that into account, and the micro-climate of Lake Como, all I have to do is check which growing months (gotta love the roman numeral system) that blue corresponds to. Those rapunzel seeds could have gone in earlier but I'm waiting it out until summer is over. Nothing could be easier but just to be sure, I always look to see if my neighbors have started planting their gardens, and from there I take my cue.
These are just a few recent shots of what's been growing and/or harvested from my little spot in the woods.
These could be either green or purple tomatillos because most of the seeds germinated late or never germinated at all, and so I saved the best of those that did make it (three!) and stuck them in a pot.
Average daytime temperature: 21°C / 70°F and a thunderstorm is brewing.