Wednesday, April 14, 2010

when the oak leaves are the size of a lambs ear

An old wive's tale that we actually use in planting our gardens is  "plant your garden when the leaves on the oak trees are the size of  a lambs ear." This picture was taken   yesterday so you know what I have been doing.

While we do use the oak leaves as a main indicator of planting time and it is pretty darn reliable, we also realize our last frost date is still well over two weeks away.  We  also looked at out 15 day outlook and there is no weather forecast under 43 degrees and we have not had a frost in about  5 weeks now so the chance of a hard frost that we would be unable to protect the few things I planted  is almost null.We have had temps in the mid to high 70s for over 2 weeks now and the weather really had me wanting to plant a bit and take a chance.

I only planted  a few things that are not frost hardy so if needed we could protect things. I planted 7 tomato plants and  a few dozen  corn seeds along with a couple zucchini, cucumber, summer squash  and a big ol pile of mixed beans in my woodland garden experiment. If something happens and the seeds don't germinate we only lost a few seeds that I had plenty of. If things go well we will be eating all those veggies a couple weeks  earlier than if  we had waited until our last frost date to plant. A chance I was certainly willing to  take.


  1. Here in Alaska, the saying is to plant when the birch leaves are the size of a squirrel's ear.

  2. i have not heard that one,interesting though... i will have to walk down in the holler and take a closer look at the birch tree and see what they tell me

  3. old wives tales are a hoot...i use the ones that my gramma beat into my cutting your hair under a certain moon...i knew this one guy he wouldnt go to the dentist unless the moon was right...i would say that since the sayings go back so long there has to be something to them right...ok well have a great day on the farm...peace

  4. Plant root crops in the dark of the moon is one of my favorites.