The Garden is Growing! All of the seeds we have planted are up and growing except the Ping Tung Long Eggplant. It is exciting to see the germinating seeds push up through the soil, open the cotyledons, and then form the first primary leaves. Most of the seeds germinate on their own quite nicely, but sometimes beans and especially lima beans, need a little help. Many times with lima beans the hypocotyl (the stem between the soil and the two cotyledons) will break off if the soil is not loose enough to allow it to pull up and out of the soil. When this happens the seedling will die. In a home garden, if you make sure the soil surface is kept moist, this will help greatly. We usually sprinkle a little water on the row every other day while the seeds are germinating, just to keep the soil surface moist. There still may be a few seedlings that still need extra help. You can help the seedlings further by putting your finger down in the moist soil and removing the soil obstruction, so the hypocotyl is free to extend upwards. At the same time our seeds are germinating, the tomato, and pepper transplants are growing upwards and outwards and are adding new leaves and stems. Some blooms are also forming, some of which we are removing to help the plants focus on vegetative growth rather than fruit production. By delaying fruit production our plants will develop a stronger structure to support future fruit production.