Ludlow farm reports a high demand in vegetable plants

LUDLOW, MA (WGGB/WSHM), May 23, 2020

Not only is Memorial Day the unofficial start of summer, but it is also the unofficial start of planting season in New England.

Garden center’s everywhere said they can’t keep vegetable plants in stock.

With so many of us at home, a big trend right now nationally and here at home, is growing your produce.

Western Mass News made a trip to Randall’s Farm in Ludlow for a lesson on how to get started.

On this beautiful day…Randall’s Farm is slammed.

People are anxious to plant flowers, but more than ever…whether its tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers or cabbage…anything labeled vegetables or herbs are in high demand.

“We’re seeing a lot of first-time gardeners and a lot of gardeners that are doing bigger projects that they’ve done before because they have the time to do them now,” said Randall’s Farm owner Karen Randall.

Randall told Western Mass News veggie seeds are scarce.

“We’ve sold through most all of our garden seeds that we typically would last at least until the end of May,” Randall explained.

Not just here, but across western Mass, Randall told us vegetable plants of all varieties are hard to come by…with many sold-out thanks to eager gardeners this year.

“Lettuce and cabbage, those kinds of things, cauliflower and broccoli, you almost can’t find the plants now and we’re waiting for a big enough crop to sell,” Randall explained.

Once you do find your plants…whether you’re doing patio pots or a full-fledged garden…the first step is location, location, location.

“Vegetable plants need six hours of sun, so if you’re choosing a location either for your new vegetable garden or for containers of vegetables, you have to make sure they have at least 6 hours of sun,” Randall said.

Good soil, good vegetable, and approved fertilizer are critical. Randall also said it’s not too late for some seeds to get going. If you can find them.

“There are some things that you want to start from seed that you might not be able to find at this point. Like radishes are great from seed, pumpkin, and some lettuces especially,” Randall said.

As its warming up they’ll germinate and grow and less is, maybe two plants per pot.

[How much do we want to put in here? We don’t want to crowd it too much.]

She suggested planting in clusters called a hill.

“This is what we call a hill. A farmer would call it a hill. In your garden, you want to plant a hole, and plant all the soil in the pot together and not bury these plants,” Randall explained.

So get outside, get your hands dirty, and get planting.

“Looking at the weather, it’s a beautiful forecast so its perfect time to plant and because we can’t do a lot of other things its a great project to do, and gardening is so rewarding,” Randall said.

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