Saturday, January 15, 2011

Seed Inventory, Review & Offer

Last year I spent almost $100 on seeds. Too much, I think, although we did start lots in the school greenhouse that ended up in the courtyard -- and I have lots leftover to use this year.  Here's what's in my seed box ready to go:

Onion - Yellow ( Hybrid Granax) and Red Burgundy(Cebolla) - I will sow a few of these, but none of the onions got bigger than the width of a quarter, maybe because I planted them near the tall tomatoes where they got too much shade.   I may order some onion starts instead. 

Lettuce - Bibb (Lechuga) 

Arugula, wild - Very easy, hardy crop here.

Beet - Chicago Red (Remolacha) - took the greens at the end of the season, but the roots never got big enough.  Will try again.

Broccoli - DiCicco - this did fine in the school courtyard, poorly in my yard. 

Peas - Super Sugar Snap  - These always do very well on my deck.

Herbs - Italian Flat Leaf Parsley (Perejil), Purple Basil, Fennel, Italian Basil (tiny leaves) - all did well. 

Cucumber - Japanese Long, Straight Eight (from MeemsNYC), American Slicing - one of my best crops last year, despite the drought.  The Japanese Long did especially well.

Beans - Purple Hyacinth, Scarlet Runner - I grow these mostly for the flowers.  We're not big bean eaters. 

Peppers - Red Ruffles (sweet)  -  took a long time to ripen, but really tasty.   I also grew a hot cherry pepper that did well. 

Melon - Minnesota Midget (these are two years old, but I'm gonna try 'em) Only got a couple of melons per plant in summer of '09

Okra- Red - not abundant harvest, but very pretty and fun to grow. 

Gourds - Gooseneck Birdhouse - never got around to sowing

Squash - Waltham Butternut, Goldy Hybrid, Delicata, Sweet Dumpling, Pumpkin mix - I only harvested zucchini and Goldy this past summer.  I tried the winter squashes but they got eaten by vine borers.

Radish - Gourmet Rainbow, French Breakfast, Watermelon, Daikon 
All of these did well except for the Daikon.  The watermelons did especially well in the school courtyard where there's more sun. 

Tomato - Big Rainbow, Sungold, Brandywine, Cherokee Purple - all are saved and all will be grown again.  I'd also like another Yellow Pear plant this year.

Pineapple Ground Cherry - saved.  Loved growing this plant.

Cabbage - Drumhead Savoy. - These were started late and never quite got going. 

Flowers - Zinnia (saved), Sweet Pea (from Joan G.) Morning Glory, Lunaria, Tiger Lily, Sweet William, Love in a Mist (saved, Jannean), Black Eyed Susan vine, Tropical Milkweed (saved), Cleome (saved) Cardinal Climber Vine (saved), French Marigold (saved)

Since my backyard is so shady, I'm looking for another plot to farm.  If I get a community plot, I may plant some carrots this year.  I probably won't plant squash in the backyard this year, but would also put this in the community plot, if I get one.

Here's my wish list (which is pretty small this year so far, but I'm sure that'll change): Onion starts, cilantro, mint, hot peppers, zucchini, bolt resistant lettuce, kale, yellow pear tomato

I packaged up my 3rd generation French Marigold seeds to share - I have quite a few packets left.   People plant them around their vegetables because they're supposed to be especially effective against nematodes, and attract beneficial insects like lacewings, ladybugs and parasitic wasps.  They are also very easy to grow and bloom until November.   Just email me your address at if you'd like a packet sent to you (while supplies last)!


tina said...

That is a lot of seeds you purchased! I'm sitting here thinking about what I will start and how and when. Need some motivation though.

Stacey said...

Great list! I'm going to inventory my seeds too - my gardening friend Edouard has brought a ton of seeds back from France to share - I don't think I'll be buying anything except potatoes and sweet potatoes. Although I will lovingly page through all the seed catalogs I have.

TALON said...

What a gorgeous list! It's making me long for spring!

And what a delightful offer, JGH!

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

You are very organize. You sure have many seed variety. I too have to follow you and make a seed inventory before I buy some seeds and potatoes tubers for autumn planting. I can make one of your wish come true. I have excess fresh cilantro seeds at the moment. Email me at

Hook Mountain Growers said...

I didn't get to do much seed saving this year but it's on high priority for this next season. Your marigold packet is beautiful - what a lovely gift for people!

FYI - Sungolds are hybrid so although your F2 generation may be close you may also get a strain of different color cherries growing instead.

k said...

Did I mention that somebody sold my name, and I'm getting a ton of seed catalogs this year - but I'll be taking an early June class out of town, so I don't think I'll be able to start much from seed? The irony.

Pam J. said...

I bow in reverence to your incredible energy and organizing skills! And thanks for reminding me that this cold, cold winter must come to an end soon.

meemsnyc said...

I see my lucky red envelope seed packet!! Those red envelopes traditionally are to hold money and to give to others during Chinese New Year, but I love giving seeds in them. They are so pretty! My parents would be so shocked. haha
The straight eights are great cucumbers, they did well in our garden. Hope it does well in yours.

BTW, I googled bacon blog and so many blogs came up. Hahahaha

Malay-Kadazan girl said...

I hope you get your community plot this year. Thank you for linking