I’m already thinking of the upcoming spring season.

Hello, again!

Winter officially arrived a few days ago, and I’m already thinking of the upcoming spring season. I tell myself every sunny day we have is one less day that we have cold, stormy weather. If the internet is correct, we’ll gain 40 minutes of sun this month! The greenhouses, even in the winter, need to be ventilated on sunny days to keep the temperatures where the plants favor it. This means we’re not having to keep furnaces running to warm the space up for the plants. Plants are like us; they seem to do better on warm, sunny days!

We are busy getting ready for spring with our early pansy and viola crop. These cold tolerant seedlings arrived in December. Pansies have been a tradition at Johnson’s for many years. My good friend Bill Jackel reminds me continually to grow them cold! It seems at first that they are growing slowly, then by early February we’re seeing a few plants flowering, and by March they are ready to be planted outside - because we’ve grown ‘em cold!

If you’re wanting to start your own garden and vegetable plants, now is the time to start early spring plants. Besides pansies, many cold tolerant flowers and vegetables may be started in January. Snapdragons, dianthus, and petunias are a few annuals for early planting, and vegetables such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and Brussels sprouts can be started indoors now as well. If you're new to seed starting, check out the resources on our website, such as our Seed Starting and Vegetable Planting Guide.

I was visiting with our bulb supplier, Piet today. Our conversation always starts in Dutch, ‘Ik hoop dat je een succesvol en voorspoedig 2024 hebt,’ was the first thing he said. I wish that for you, as well!

Your friend in the garden,

Marty Johnson
Owner - Johnson's Garden Center