Greetings! I hope you all had a happy and safe holiday and that you are enjoying the winter season. With some time off and the need to keep active to stay healthy, I’ve been trying to go for walks as often as I can. I’ve walked many laps around my neighborhood, been to the town forest down the road, brought a friend to SVT trails at Mt. Pisgah and met up with another friend at the historical Battle Road Trail in Lincoln (it’s a wide, flat trail that’s great for strollers!). This is also the time of year when I am busy tweaking the crop plan and finalizing my seed order.
Last March, as we began sheltering in place, many people decided to try growing food from home. There was such an increase in demand that many seed companies were overwhelmed with orders and were selling out of their stock. Typically, most seed companies still have all varieties available in January and I’m able to shop online easily. This year is slightly different. While I’m still able to get everything I need for the farm, there are many varieties already sold out and some companies are adjusting their ordering availability to give commercial growers priority. That said, there are still plenty of opportunities to get seeds from many different places. Even if one variety isn’t available from one seller, doesn’t mean it’s sold out everywhere.
If you are interested in growing at home for the first time, there are few things to consider. If you don’t have the time or space to start seeds at home, you can (and absolutely should!) get seedlings locally at our seedling sale in May. We will have a huge selection of vegetables, herbs, and flowers to cover most of your gardening needs. Transplants help give your garden a jump start and give them an advantage to outcompete many pesky weeds.
However, there are some vegetables that you should seed directly into your gardens and never transplant. This is because their roots are highly sensitive and do not like being disturbed. Below are the vegetables you should direct seed and some varieties I like growing based both on flavor and how well it grows in our area.
Always direct seed:
Mokum – good Spring carrot
Bolero – sweetest carrot I’ve ever grown, good for Summer and Fall
Hakurei – best for fresh eating
Purple Top White Globe – best storage turnip
Red Gold – delicious, early variety
Rover – best fresh radish
Red Meat – best watermelon radish
KN-Bravo – purple daikon radish
The following varieties can either be transplanted or direct seeded:
Provider – prolific, green bush bean
Sugar Snap – best snap pea
Maxigolt – best shelling pea
Oregon Giant – best snow pea
Space – great variety for any season and is resistant to many strains of powdery mildew
Astro – delicious, heat tolerant
Hera – uniform plants, heat tolerant
Calypso – flavorful, heat tolerant
Red Ace – best standard red beet
If you order seeds and are still unsure if you should seed directly into the ground, check the information on the seed packet. There is typically a good amount of growing information on the back that tells you when to plant and proper spacing. Happy planning and happy seeding!
Until next time,