This past Saturday, Mother Nature showed me who’s boss by using her freezing temperature powers. She took our little tomato, pepper and basil seedlings from us. I walked into our high tunnels early Sunday morning to give them a drink and to my surprise I found that only our cabbage and kale had survived the night. We have had other cold nights since the seedlings were planted and they withstood the colder temperatures no problem.
This was a humbling moment as a new, young gardener. It showed me that no matter how much you baby your plants or how attentive you try to be to their specific needs, Mother Nature gets the final say. I now see the true value in having extra plastic for emergency low tunnels when the unpredictable spring temperatures are planning to dip. The school currently has one low tunnel outside over our beets, kale and cauliflower and those plants are doing just fine!
The loss of our tomato and pepper seedlings will set our hot sauce production back a few weeks. Luckily, the students and I have plenty of young seedlings still inside and we won’t have to start production from stage 1! This life lesson has also stressed the value of a thorough garden plan as well as planting your seeds in succession. I hope that this is our only minor setback on our journey to our first year of hot sauce production!