2023 Field Notes

Salvia -- Salvia farinacea -- Victoria Blue


Sown 3/19
Germination 3/23 (4 days)

Germination counts
3/23, 2pm: 6
3/24, 7am: 20
3/24, 3pm: 28
3/25, 9am: 31
3/26, 8am: 47

3/19 -- 50 seeds spread out into five rows onto a 20 row tray. Used the custom germination mix. Dropped each seed into the mix and slightly poked it onto the surface with the pointy end of a mini wooden marker. Pre-wet the mixture to also help the seeds be sticky. Went onto the heat mat alongside the snapdragons, heat mat set to 75 degrees.

3/23 -- Noticed the tray was quite dry this morning, so might be re-thinking my bottom watering every other day schedule.

3/23 -- Germination noticed during my afternoon check. Pretty easy to see these on the whole.

3/25 -- These are proceeding nicely, up to 60% germination this morning.

3/31 -- These are increasing significantly in size, especially compared to their tiny-seeded brethren in the greenhouse right now. Of the 50 or so that have germinated, around 35-40 look like viable pot up candidates. Bottom watering every other day, same as the other germinated trays.

4/6 -- These are getting nice and big, second set of leaves coming in on many of them. Of those that germinated, somewhere around 40 viable transplant candidates. Supposed to pot them up in a few days, potentially, and I think we have a good chance to get that done on schedule.

4/9 -- Potted up 12 of these today into a 50 cell tray with potting mix. Each of them had pretty good roots, so I'm optimistic they'll do well in the 50 cell I put them in. If they do well, I'll likely move a bunch more over mid-week.

4/11 -- Most of the transplants look OK, three don't. We'll see where these net out after today's watering. Should be able to move a few more to the tray in the coming days if I want to continue to invest here. Same lesson as Snapdragon and Foxglove - while these didn't do super poorly, they struggled after germination, like most stuff I put in the custom germination mix. Great germination, stalled growth.

4/14 -- I transplanted four more of these into the tray yesterday, and they don't look good today. I don't have a lot of other good transplant candidates...so I'm now left figuring out whether I should keep the ~eight or so I have or just abandon Salvia for the year. I'll probably keep them and look to use the other 40 spots on something else.

4/22 -- These ended up being an adventure. I was able to, in the end, only transplant 20 of these into a 50 cell tray, 19 of which are doing OK right now. I suspect the issue, as it was with some of my other early starters, was my custom germination mix - too much vermiculite & perlite, not enough coir. This was a consistent theme amongst my earlier starters, outstanding germination but poor growth after germination. The good news is, these are OK and growing now, but they're behind. We'll see if they can catch up.

4/30 -- These are...OK. Growing, slowly, most of them still alive. Having not done them before, not entirely sure how big they should be! But they look pretty happy.

5/30 -- Got 17 of these into a row yesterday, 2 rows at 12 inch spacing. Pick a spot at the start of the row that gets a bit of shade 2x a day. Pretty pleased with how these look - not huge but healthy looking seedlings. Watered them in using phosphorus-rich fertilizer. Had an 18th that I didn't plant because it was too small.

6/13 -- These have been a creature target, unfortunately. Of the 17, I lost one pretty early on and was able to replace it, but three more have gotten chomped in the meantime. I may try to protect them, but I'm not sure yet. Hopefully they'll be left alone going forward, but I doubt it.

6/25 -- These are growing, but I spotted some weird small black bugs on them the other day that I need to identify and determine whether or not I need to remove them.

7/2 -- First buds on a couple of these!

7/23 -- Most of these have flowers now, a single set of purple flowers.

8/5 -- These are very charming, but haven't made a whole lot of flowers. We'll see if that changes, but regardless, I'm curious to try these again in the future.

8/25 -- Nothing new to report here - still not a TON of flowers but each plant is healthy and has really nice blue/purple stalks of color.

9/22 -- These have come on really strong late in the season - they look great, have lots of flowers, truly a star of the late season garden.