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Mid-April Garden Jobs

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It is finally time to get into the garden after a long and very cold winter. Here are some jobs that can happen right now.

Sow from Seeds

Peas, carrots, beets, radishes, turnips

Transplant

Onions - they need the cooler days and long nights of April in order to make large onions in summer. Here are a couple of videos that will give you an idea of how to do it quickly. First, make a trench and sprinkle in some Compost Plus:

Then separate the clump of onion plants into individual plants. Onions should be planted about 4” apart, so just lay them in the trench, all in a row, then gently pat the soil around them to fill in the trench and stand them upright.

Leeks are planted the same way, but require more space, so I do those 6” part with 2 feet between the rows. Onions can have 1 foot between the rows. One 4-pack of our onion or leek plants has about 80 plants in each pack, so it is great to buy a few varieties and share with a friend so you can try multiple kinds. We grow red and yellow storage onions, Italian cipolinni onions, mini purple onions, 2 kinds of sweet onions, and early New York onions. We also grow scallions, 3 kinds of leeks, and shallots. All are planted in the same way, except scallions can be planted in small clumps of 10 to 15 plants. And they don’t need to grow in rows, but can be tucked into individual spots between other plants.

You can also be planting kale, arugula, mache, mustard greens, cabbage, and collards.

Herbs that can take the cold of April: Sorrel, chervil, cilantro, dill, chives.

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In the flowering plants department, it is a good time to plant alyssum, violas, and pansies. They are a good food source for bees this time of year when very few other things are flowering.


I wrote more about onions a few years ago here.

Happy gardening! They are announcing rain later today, so I am getting out there now.






Focus on Eric!

Eric building our pergola 

Eric building our pergola 

During our 10th anniversary season, we'll feature profiles of members of our amazing Red Wagon team. This week we interviewed Eric Denice, who’s our jack of all trades, maintaining our facilities, keeping our greenhouses running smoothly, and fabricating beautiful raised beds and retail displays. 

Like Allison Lea, you’re one of the longest term Red Wagon employees. How did you end up here? What keeps you here? 

I went to college for environmental studies but left after six months. I wanted to have my own little farm. When I was 20, I had a greenhouse in my backyard. I didn’t know a whole lot back then. 

I had known Julie for a while before I started working here. One day I was biking past Red Wagon, I popped in to say hello, and Julie said she needed [to hire] someone. The timing was right for me, and nine years later … 

What keeps me here? It’s a beautiful place, and I work well with Julie and learn a lot from her. The seasonal work fits well with my other jobs. And I’ve always loved plants.

What do you do at Red Wagon?

I build greenhouses, fix everything, do the plumbing and a little bit of electric. I build our retail displays and benches. I set up systems, like our computerized irrigation system.

I started out doing wholesale deliveries and customer service. This is the first year I'm not doing deliveries.

I have my own business in greenhouse construction and residential carpentry.

Are there any special projects you’re particularly proud of?

Well, I built the two 150-foot greenhouses out back, and I set up their computer-controlled overhead irrigation system. Working for Red Wagon, I’ve built greenhouses all over Vermont.   

What are your favorite Red Wagon plants?

We grow so many plants now – it’s really incredible. I like everything, especially our kale and tomatoes.  

What’s your home garden like?

We have raised vegetable beds and a perennial garden. It’s a lot harder to maintain a perennial garden after having a child!

How have you been reflecting on Red Wagon’s 10th anniversary year?

I’ve learned a lot at Red Wagon. Julie runs the business really well. For example, I’ve gained a lot of customer service skills, and learned how to work with people on a professional level. I’ve learned the importance of being really thorough and detail-oriented. How to think through all my projects completely. How to make things so they last – always keeping the long-term in mind. 

Job Openings At Red Wagon Plants

 

Staff Openings at Red Wagon Plants

2012 Growing Season

 

1 Full-Time Seasonal Production Person.

This person will start in March (part-time initially) and will continue into mid-June. Must be willing to work long hours, standing, lifting 50 pounds repeatedly throughout the day. This is a fast-paced, fun work setting and perfect for someone who loves plants, and loves the satisfaction that comes from a long day of potting up little plants into their pots and packs. Being comfortable with an iPad, and having experience managing work-flow is key. Starting pay is a function of experience.

1 Part-Time Seasonal Delivery Person

This person will start in mid-April and work through mid-June. This is for someone with a clean driving record, able to drive a 16’ box truck in all kinds of situations and have some experience with merchandising. Part of this job involves creating plant displays, organizing signs, and answering customer questions. Must have gardening experience, customer service skills and be very organized.

1 Part-time Seasonal Retail Person.

This position will be seasonal, from April 20th to July 20th. Some retail experience and considerable gardening experience required. Excellent customer service skills (our style is welcoming, warm, kind, informative)  and  stamina are required. Additionally, candidate must be able to move trays of plants and heavy potted nursery stock. Weekend shift is required, and position involves about 20 to 32 hours depending on the week.
If you are interested in applying, please contact julieATredwagonplantsDOTcom with resume and references.
No phone calls please.