I cannot believe it has taken me this long to get a soil thermometer. I was a Colorado Master Gardener for about ten years, and we would often advise people on sowing vegetable seeds and putting out transplants based on soil temperature. Then I would continue my practice of basically going by the calendar or just putting things out when I had the time (which was, more often than not, actually later than they should be – part of the consequence of being a college instructor with a busy spring semester).
So today I posted an article on starting vegetables in our area at the Pikes Peak Area Gardening Help blog. As I reread it before posting, I realized that, once again, there was that soil temperature advice. So I decided right then and there to go out and purchase a soil thermometer ($10 – cheap!). Since we’ve had a stretch of warmer-than-usual 60-to-70 degree daytime weather, I really was curious to see what the temp was in my two raised beds. And here are the results! (Hmm…I guess I’m not going to be direct sowing much in the near future!)