We’re so happy you’re bringing home one of our containers

We’re providing you with seeds and instructions for planting three rounds of plants (this is called succession planting). Here’s how to keep your plants happy and grow some great food! 

We would love to see photos of your plants as they grow! It makes us feel good, but also helps us get more funding to do more events like this. If you’re able, please email your photos to nmelley@thedch.org. 

If you have any questions about growing your plants feel free to email nmelley@thedch.org or call us at (302) 658-6262 ext. 117.  

Early Spring (as soon as you bring your container home)  

Packet #1 

Tom Thumb Pea (large green seed) and Danvers Carrot (tiny brown seed) 

  1. Choose the best spot for your pot. A sunny outdoor location is best, but a sunny window will work too. \
  2. Place your pot on the saucer in your chosen location and fill it with soil. If the soil is dry, give it a good water. It should be damp but not soaking, like a wrung-out sponge. 
  3. Plant the seeds from the packet #1. You should create a bullseye with a ring of pea seeds (the bigger ones) in the center, and a ring of carrot seeds (the smaller ones) around the outside. The pea seeds can be pushed about ½ inch into the soil. The carrots can be sprinkled onto the surface of the soil, and a little more soil sprinkled on top. They’re tiny seeds, so they don’t need to be deep.  
  4. Keep the soil damp (but not soaking wet) until the carrots have sprouted. That could take up to three weeks. The peas are faster. You should see them between 7 and 14 days after planting.  
  5. Once the carrots have sprouted, you should water whenever the top ½ inch of soil dries out. This could be every day or several days a week. It depends on the weather and how much sun the container gets.  
  6. The peas will grow flowers which will develop into pea pods. They will be ready to pick when they feel plump and full. Pea leaves are also edible (and delicious!). 
  7. The carrots may start to pop up a little when they are close to being ripe. You can also carefully dig around the edge of the carrot – if it is orange, it is ready. 

Late Spring / Early Summer  

Packet #2 

Golden Wax Bean (large yellow seed) and Slobolt Lettuce (small brown seed) 

  1. When there are no more peas or pea flowers, cut the tops of the plants off, leaving the roots in place. Plant the bean seeds from the summer packet in the same circle where the peas were. They should be planted 1” deep.  
  2. You can wait to plant the lettuce until you have harvested all the carrots, or you can smooth out the soil and plant a lettuce seed whenever you pull a carrot. They only need to be planted ¼ inch deep. 
  3. Both plants will take between 7 and 14 days to sprout. Don’t let them dry out until they have sprouted. Once they have sprouted, you can wait until the top ½ inch of soil dries out before watering.  
  4. The beans are ready when the pods turn yellow. This lettuce is a looseleaf, cut-and-come again type. That means that you can cut off leaves whenever you need them. You can cut the entire patch and let it re-grow, or you can break off the larger leaves of each plant if you only need a few.  

    Late Summer / Early Fall 

    Packet #3 

    Miss Annie Pearl Counselman Collards 

    1. When the beans have finished producing, pull all remaining bean and lettuce plants from the pot.  
    2. Smooth the soil and then scatter the collard seeds from the Fall packet evenly over the entire pot. Sprinkle with a little more soil, or press lightly into the soil.  
    3. The collards should sprout in 3 to 10 days. They need to be thinned so that there are only four plants left in the container. Do this by pulling the smaller seedlings, leaving the bigger ones as evenly spaced as you can. You can eat the seedlings that you pull! 
    4. Harvest by pulling off the bottom leaves and working your way to the top. Leave a cluster of leaves at the top, and the plant will continue to grow – even through frost and snow! 


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