This weekend I completed the seed inventory of what we had on hand that was still viable, got it all on the computer together and used that to determine our seed orders for 2012. We have some things we feel pretty good about, good lord willing and the creek don’t rise. We have some other things that we are trying something new with, but have hope that it will work, and a few shots in the dark where we have some seed, and if we can find a spare patch of dirt we are going to toss the seed out and see what happens!
We got back with our prefered vendor this year for most of our seed potatoes, so we are hoping to avoid some of the mess that happened with that last year. Varieties are:
Red Thumb Fingerling.
We are hoping for four or five kinds of garlic this year, although fall planting proved challenging with the crazy wet weather. What we hae out is looking pretty good, and we are hoping the rest will go in and thrive in the spring.
Spring greens are going to be Spinach and Kale we hope. We have a new trick for the flee beetles that we are hoping will help.
Beets, carrots and radish will round out our early spring plantings. We have found an old heirloom type of carrot that is supposed to be the best for clay soils that we are going to try. We have a few other tricks with the root vegies that we didn’t have available to us last year that we are hoping make a big difference.
Lots of peas on tap this year. 2 types of sugar snap, one early and one main crop. english shelling and snow peas as well. We learned a lot with the peas last year and are hoping to increase our yields considerably. Plus we will have about twice as much seed, so I hope everyone is in the mood to give peas a chance!
We really messed up the beans last year, but what little we got out of them was great. We are coming back with 2 green beans, yellow waxed, dragon’s tongue and a burgandy pod for fresh snaps. Also planning butter beans, black eyed peas, two kinds of dried beans and a surprise variety that we hope works for us!
Okra will definitely be back, with both red and green again this year. We did well with the Okra last year, but think we can do better this with some luck.
Summer squash and zucchini will see the yellow straight neck (the kind with the nice soft skin), heirloom dark green zukes and the Costada Romanesco that we had a little of last year (the pretty baby zukes with the flowers still attached).
We will have the same European slicing cucumbers that we did last year along with an heirloom american slicer and pickling cuke. We are curious to see how much interest there is in the little pickling cukes. We are hoping for lots of interest, otherwise we will be putting up a ton of pickles!
We intend on trialing a bunch of mellons this year. Around 5 varieties each of musk mellon and water mellon. Some old heirlooms and some newer favorites. Sugar babies and a golden midget watermellon will make nice little icebox mellons. We will also have an orange fleshed that I am curious about.
Have a few different fall squash on tap, to include butternut and three kinds of acorn. Also have a few varieites of pumkins that the weather was too dry to plant last year. Everything from your standard orange jack-o-lanterns to whites punkins, flat punkins and warty punkins. Some good pie and canning varieites too.
One of our biggest crazy ideas this year will be corn. We are putting in two heirloom types, both of them are decorative and milling types. The hope is to get a good harvest and be able to take them to one of the small mills in Pennsylvania and have corn meal. As heirloom organic seed corn is both expensive and not very plentiful, we will be trying to save seed as well. This will involve an elaborate routine of collecting pollen and bagging the individual ears of corn so they don’t become contaminated from nearby GMO crops. If this goes anyplace, I am sure you will be seeing lots of pictures of the adventure over the course of the summer.
We will keep our fingers crossed for all of the above, and let folks know about things getting planted, and how they are doing. Hopefully you will be able to track things from the catalog, through the field and to your table this year! See you at the markets soon!!!!!
Jan and Ray