2012 was our best year for actually eating the majority of what we grew. I am finding that it isn’t just growing healthy and delicious fruit and vegetables. I am also changing my planning, cooking and eating habits so that our harvest is efficiently eaten and/or preserved. Using my successes and failures, I have ordered or gathered together the following annuals seeds to plant in 2013. These include vegetable seeds I saved from this year’s crop and seeds I have left over from previous yearly purchases. These are the annual vegetables I have chosen to grow and some of the reasons behind my decisions. Whenever possible, I have chosen heirloom varieties to help me increase my seed saving and also because I am encouraging my annual plants to self-sow in many areas of my gardens.
- Amish Paste – An heirloom and my all-time favorite paste tomato. Thank you Bon, for introducing it to me.
- Principe Borghese – I plan to grow these in a dry, sunny corner of the yard and see if I can get sun-dried tomatoes without using any electricity
- Opalka Paste – I grew these last year and really liked them. Unfortunately, so did the garden slugs. I need more fireflies in my gardens so I will have to work on improving my meadows to make them a better habitat.
- Big Red (Sweet)
- Marconi (heirloom) I really liked these sweet red peppers and saved seeds so we could enjoy them again.
- A variety of hot peppers; I will buy young plants from a local farm-stand in the spring.
Strawberry Spinach – (heirloom) My plants did not survive the summer but I am intrigued by them so I am giving them another chance
Lettuce Mix (spring/summer)
Lettuce Mix (fall/winter)
Crisp-head Lettuce Summertime
Bloomsdale Longstanding Spinach (heirloom)
Bright Lights Chard
Rose Orach (heirloom) – This is brand new to us; I just had to try it.
Cherry Belle Radish
Spigariello Liscia Greens – Another new green to try!
Miner’s Lettuce (heirloom) I plan to encourage this to spread as a ground cover in the food forest garden.
Broccoli Raab – I saved seeds and it self-sows beautifully.
Golden (heirloom) – Even though I am the only one in the family who will eat beets, I really enjoy them.
Asparagus Pea (heirloom)
Blue Lake Pole Beans
Scarlet Runner Beans (heirloom)
Jacob’s Cattle Beans (heirloom)
Hopi Blue Dent Corn (heirloom) My sons are tired of growing popcorn so we are trying something new. Don’t black beans tucked inside blue corn tortillas sound delicious? Now that I have my own grain mill, I am ready to grow my own corn meal.
Golden Flax (heirloom)
White Wonder (heirloom)
Black Zucchini (heirloom)
Striata D’Italia (heirloom)
Early Prolific Straightneck
Winter Luxury Pie Pumpkin (heirloom)
- Speckled Field Peas
- Winter Rye
- Red Clover
- White Dutch Clover
- Tarahumara White Shelled
This does not include any of my perennial vegetables, flowers or herb seeds but the list is already overwhelmingly long. Right now I am planning which of these seeds I can winter sow, which seeds I should start indoors and which seeds I can sow directly in the ground…. Lots of work to do before the ground thaws.
-- "To forget how to dig the earth and to tend the soil is to forget ourselves." M. Gandhi