Time to sow some seeds
Where January was mostly wet and rainy, February has come with both snow and a cold that cuts like a knife to the bone. Luckily it's warm inside, the days are longer and brighter and I couldn't help myself getting started on the upcoming greenhouse seasonthis weekend.
Bell peppers and chillies, some seeds from last year, but they've almost lost the ability to germinate. Instead, buy fresh bell pepper and chilli in the supermarket, remove the kernels and sow them now. There is almost a guarantee that all seeds will grow. If you get too many plants - and that will happen, when you sow all the seeds in a bell pepper - give away a few at work, use them as a hostess gift or give them to your neighbour.
The same goes for tomatoes, if you've bought some good tomatoes during winter, save a few seeds and sow them now. They grow willingly and from now on I will no longer spend money on buying expensive bell pepper or tomato seeds.
Cucumbers are way too early to sow, they become long and gangly before they can be planted in the greenhouse. I also stopped sowing cucumbers myself, as April and May you can buy the nicest plants for almost no money.
Cleaning out my seeds
Several years old cress seeds have lost the ability to germination and will be used as bird seed. How can you tell if cress can germinate? Once you have "sown" the seeds on a plate with cotton wool or kitchen paper and watered them, they swell up and get a jelly-like membrane around the seed within an hour or two. If the seeds don't get that, you might as well throw them out to the birds or on the compost. If the seeds are still good, the cress sprouts in a day, some times in just a few hours. Children find that quite magical to watch and I do understand why.
Remember to water well - once or twice a day - and do not place the cress in direct sun, but a bright and warm place.