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Easiest Veggies to Grow from Seed to Harvest Posted on 19 Apr 08:24 , 0 comments

If you search the web, you'll find that many gardeners agree on the top easy veggies to grow. We all have our challenges and our favorites.


Last year, my best producer was the
Black Beauty Zucchini
Some of them grew over 18 inches long
(that's a wide-mouth quart jar for comparison)


You don't have to have a "farm" or land to grow food. If you're up to it, read my recent article "You Don't Need a Farm to Grow Your Own Food."


Just last year we posted about our Bucket Garden Project. "For this project, 100% of the buckets used are recycled. Some of the buckets were from previous projects and the yellow ones once held fresh kitty litter. The white buckets are food grade. The goal of this project to spend as little as possible and still grow food."

For simple seed starting, see our tutorial on



So let's get started!


People often ask, "What's the easiest veggie to grow?" For me, that's a tough one. If I had to choose just ONE, the easiest veggie with the best yield, it would have to be Swiss Chard. Swiss Chard is easy to grow from seed and provides continual harvest for several months after maturity. Swiss Chard can survive warm and hot climates so that's a plus.


What are the 9 Easiest Veggies to Grow?



Planting:
Soak seeds overnight in water before planting to ensure strong germination. Plant seeds half an inch deep and 3 inches apart. Set out seedlings 12 inches apart. Indoors or out, thin newly germinated seedlings with cuticle scissors instead of pulling them out. Chard seed capsules often contain two or more seeds. If more than one germinates, promptly snip off all but the strongest sprout at the soil line

Harvesting:
Twist off individual outer leaves and compost old leaves that have lost their glossy sheen. Three to five leaves can be picked from mature plants at a time, but be sure to leave the growing crown intact.

CHARD growing in a container

 

 


Radishes are a cool weather crop best planted in spring and autumn. Growing radishes during the hot summer months will cause them to bolt.

Planting: When preparing the planting bed, loosen the soil 6 to 10 inches deep, and mix in good compost or well-rotted manure. Sow seeds a half inch deep and 1 inch apart, in rows spaced 12 inches apart. After the seedlings appear, thin salad radishes to 3 inches apart; thin oriental radishes to 8 to 10 inches apart.

Harvest: Some Radish varieties such as Early Scarlet Globe radish can mature in as few as 22 days!
RADISH is a quick growing veggie!
From Mary's Blog:

 


Planting: All types of lettuce grow best when the soil is kept constantly moist, and outside temperatures range between 45 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit.

Prepare your planting bed by loosening the soil to at least 10 inches deep. Mix in an inch or so of good compost or well-rotted manure. Sow lettuce seeds a quarter of an inch deep and 1 inch apart in rows or squares, or simply broadcast them over the bed.

Harvest: Harvest lettuce in the morning, after the plants have had all night to plump up with water.
LETTUCE is a great container vegetable


For the sake of simplicity, I classify beans in 2 categories: Bush and Pole.

Bush beans are usually compact and grow close to the ground. Pole beans climb and require a trellis or other support. Bush beans tend to produce more beans in a shorter time, while pole beans will produce more over an entire season. Pole beans typically require much less.

Planting: Wait until well after the last frost before you plant the beans as they all like warm soil for germination. Plant the seeds about an inch below the surface and keep watered until the seed germinate

Harvest: Whether you grow pole beans or bush beans you will have an abundant harvest if you remember to pick regularly. Most beans are harvested before the seed grows too large, and the overall harvest will continue for many weeks if the beans are picked every day or so.
BEANS are one of my favorite!
From Mary's Blog:

 


Planting: In the spring, sow carrot seeds in fertile, well-worked soil about two weeks before your last frost date. In cool climates, continue planting every three weeks until midsummer. Sow your seeds about a quarter inch deep and 2 inches apart, in rows spaced at least 10 inches apart; carrots do well in double or triple rows. Thin seedlings to 4 to 6 inches apart, depending on the variety’s mature size.

Harvesting: Pull or dig spring-sown carrots when roots reach mature size and show rich color. Summer-sown carrots that mature in cool fall soil can be left in the ground longer, but should be dug before the ground freezes to preserve their quality
Delicious CARROTS
From Mary's Blog:

 


There are two types of cucumbers: slicing and pickling. Each type comes in several different varieties. The slicing types are long and usually grow to about 6 or 8 inches in length while the pickling types are shorter, reaching around 3 to 4 inches once mature.

Planting:
Thoroughly water the soil before plant­ing seeds half an inch deep and 6 inches apart. When the seedlings have three leaves, thin them to 12 inches apart, which is the spacing you should use if transplanting seedlings.

Harvest: To maximize production, harvest fruits as soon as they reach picking size. Pick daily, be­cause under ideal conditions, cucumber fruits can double in size in just one day. Use scissors or small shears to snip fruits with a short stub of stem attached.
Tiny CUCUMBER growing on the vine!
From Mary's Blog:

The two main things you can do to keep your summer squash plants healthy and productive are to provide plenty of water and to fertilize regularly. Water your plants when the top inch of soil is dry (test by poking your finger into the soil) and then, water deeply and gently so the water percolates down into the soil

Planting: Soak seeds in water for 24 hours before planting to ensure strong germination. Direct seed ½ to 1 inch deep into hills or rows.

Harvest: Harvest zucchini squash when the fruits are small. This will result in a more tender and flavorful squash.
Last year some of our ZUCCHINI grew HUGE!
From Mary's Blog:

 


There are two basic Types of Tomatoes: Determinate and Indeterminate.

Determinate tomatoes produce the fruit all at once. These are typically bush tomatoes, and make the best tomatoes for container gardening. Since all the tomatoes are ripe within a short period of time, these are great plant choices if you plan to can or have a short tomato growing season.

Indeterminate tomatoes grow on a vine. If properly cared for, will produce all season until the first frost.

For indoor seed starting: Start seeds indoors under bright fluorescent lights in early spring, about six to eight weeks before your last spring frost

Soak seeds in water for 24 hours before planting to ensure strong germination. Sow seeds 1/4 inch deep and gently cover with soil

The easiest way to grow tomatoes from seed is to plant seeds in small containers. Tomato seeds usually germinate in 5-14 days. Once seedlings are 4-8 inches tall, transplant into a 5-gallon container/bucket or into your garden.
Homegrown HEIRLOOM TOMATOES
From Mary's Blog:

 


Easy-to-grow beets do double-duty in the kitchen, producing tasty roots for baking, boiling or sautéing and fresh greens to boil or steam.

Planting: Begin planting beet seeds directly in the garden one month before your last spring frost date, followed by a second planting two to three weeks later. Beet seeds can germinate in cool soil, but they sprout best when soil temperatures are above 50 degrees

Start planting beets for fall harvest 10 to 12 weeks before your expected first fall frost.

Harvest: Beets can be harvested whenever they grow to the desired size. About 60 days are required for beets to reach 1 1/2 inches in diameter
Delicious BEETS
From Mary's Blog:

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Marys-Heirloom-Seeds/229833070442449




APRIL Seed Planting Guide for the US Posted on 31 Mar 05:54 , 0 comments

Are you ready for another in-depth seed planting guide for the US? 

At Mary's Heirloom Seeds it is our goal to help you grow the healthiest, most productive garden from heirloom seeds.  If you have additional questions, we are happy to help!

Mary's Heirloom Seeds
Quick Links
Join Our List
NEW ARRIVALS
 



March 31, 2017
In case you missed it, we offer region specific planting guide for entire year on our blog
Mary's 2017 Planting Guide


I don't know about you but sometimes even I need a reminder of what to plant next month.  Plus, we're always offering new specials and posting new seed varieties. 
 Before we get started, we have lowered the cost
of 6 of our Starter Kits thru April 15th.

This is a great opportunity and  
they make great gifts!
APRIL SEED PLANTING GUIDE FOR THE US  

**Please keep in mind that this is a general recommendation for each region listed.  If your area is experiencing unusually extreme changes in weather you'll need to adjust and plant accordingly**




Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant (transplant), Endive, Kale, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Bunching Onions, Southern Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Tomato, and Watermelon. 
Herbs:
Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Beets, Cabbage, Chinese Cabbage, Cantaloupes, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Collards, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant (transplant), Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Leeks, Melons, Mustard, Peas-Snow or English, Southern Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomato and Watermelon. 
Herbs:
Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!
Arugula Beans, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Celery, Chard, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Endive, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Pak Choy, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Sorrel, Spinach, Squash, Tomato, Turnip and Watermelon. 
Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Pretty much EVERY Herb!!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Bush Beans & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Collards, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Bunching Onion, Southern Peas, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Radish, Radicchio, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes and Watermelon.
Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the Wildflowers!


INDOOR planting for cooler/cold areas.  If your area is warming up or already warmed up, it might be time to plant outside! 
*If you are starting seeds indoors or in a greenhouse,  
you can plant just about anything*
 
Sow Indoors/Outdoors:  Artichoke, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Eggplant, Kohlrabi, Leek, Melons, Onions, Peppers, Radish, Rutabaga, Scallion, Tomatoes and Turnips
GREENS: Arugula, Chard, Collards, Endive, Kale, Mustard, Radicchio and Sorrel can be sown indoors under bright lights and planted outside when there are two true leaves. Curly cress and arugula prefer to be sown directly outside
Herbs: Basil, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Fennel, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache plant and Thyme. 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Sow Indoors: Eggplant, Peppers and Tomatoes
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Pak Choy, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Sorrel, Spinach, Squash, Tomato, Turnip and Watermelon. 
Transplant: Asparagus, Broccoli, Celery, Eggplant, Kohlrabi, Leek, Peppers and Tomatoes
Herbs: Basil, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Fennel, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache plant and Thyme. 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Sow Indoors: Cabbage, Celery, Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Leek, Lettuce, Peppers, Radicchio, and Tomato
Sow Outdoors: Artichoke, Arugula, Beets, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Chard, Carrot, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard, Onion, Pak Choy, Peas, Radish, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnips
Transplant: Artichoke, Asparagus, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Onions, Scallion, Sorrel and Spinach
Herbs: Basil, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Fennel, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache plant and Thyme. 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
CONTINUE READING


Sow Outdoors: Arugula Beans, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant (transplant), Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Pak Choy, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Sorrel, Spinach, Squash, Tomato, Turnip and Watermelon. 
Transplant: Asparagus, Broccoli, Celery, Eggplant, Kohlrabi, Leek, Peppers and Tomatoes
Herbs: Basil, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Fennel, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache plant and Thyme. 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
 
Sow Indoors: Cabbage, Celery, Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Leek, Lettuce, Peppers, Radicchio, and Tomato
Sow Outdoors: Artichoke, Arugula, Beets, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Chard, Carrot, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard, Onion, Pak Choy, Peas, Radish, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnips
Transplant: Artichoke, Asparagus, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Onions, Scallion, Sorrel and Spinach
Herbs: Basil, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Fennel, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache plant and Thyme. 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Sow Indoors: Cabbage, Celery, Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Leek, Lettuce, Peppers, Radicchio, and Tomato
Sow Indoors: Artichoke, Arugula, Beets, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Chard, Carrot, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard, Onion, Pak Choy, Peas, Radish, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnips
Herbs: Basil, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Fennel, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Peppermint, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache plant and Thyme. 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!

 ARIZONA  
 

 NEW MEXICO   

FLORIDA has been split in 3 regions 
 

 
Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Chinese Cabbage, Southern Peas, Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes and Radish
Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Chinese Cabbage, Sweet Corn, Okra, Southern Peas, Sweet Potatoes, Summer Squash, Winter Squash and Swiss Chard    
CONTINUE READING


 Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupes, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Okra, Southern Peas, Sweet Potatoes, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes and Watermelon
CONTINUE READING
Helpful Links to
Get you Started    
If you have additional questions please feel free to ask. 

 

Happy Planting,

 

Mary's Heirloom Seeds, P. O. Box 3763, Ramona, CA 92065

http://www.facebook.com/pages/Marys-Heirloom-Seeds/229833070442449

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EDIBLE FLOWERS @ Mary's Heirloom Seeds Posted on 04 Mar 07:48 , 1 comment

Safety First! As lovely as eating flowers can be, it can also be a little ... deadly! Not to scare you off or anything.
-Eat flowers you know to be consumable and preferably flowers you have grown yourself.
-Do not eat roadside flowers or those picked in public parks. Both may have been treated with pesticide or herbicide, and roadside flowers may be polluted by car exhaust.
-Eat only the petals, and remove pistils and stamens before eating
As with any new food, use caution.
 
Some of the varieties listed are "leafy" crops that bolt (flower) and the flowers are edible.
 
JERUSALEM ARTICHOKE
Often used for pickling purposes. Fresh tuber tastes like a water chestnut and is used in salads. Tubers can also be cooked like potatoes. The edible portion is the tuber or swollen end of an underground stem, which in some respects resembles a potato.
Flowers resemble small sunflowers or large daisies. Ripens in late fall.
 
ALLIUMS
All blossoms from the allium family (leeks,chives, garlic, garlic chives) are edible and flavorful!


Both flowers and leaves have a subtle anise or licorice flavor.


Petals are edible. Avoid the bitter calyx.


Blossoms come in a variety of colors, from white to pink to lavender


 
 
Blossoms are a lovely blue hue and taste like cucumber!


 
 
Small and daisylike, the flowers have a sweet flavor and are often used in tea. Ragweed sufferers may be allergic to chamomile.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
I hope you have enjoyed another educational article.  if you have additional questions, please leave a comment below or send an email to mary@marysheirloomseeds.com

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MARCH Seed Planting Guide for the US By Region Posted on 01 Mar 08:48 , 0 comments

IT'S FINALLY MARCH!  We're planting more seeds this week and looking forward to SPRING!

Mary's Heirloom Seeds
Quick Links
Join Our List
NEW ARRIVALS
 








March 1, 2017
In case you missed it, we offer region specific planting guide for entire year on our blog
Mary's 2017 Planting Guide


I don't know about you but sometimes even I need a reminder of what to plant next month.  Plus, we're always offering new specials and posting new seed varieties.

MARCH SEED PLANTING GUIDE FOR THE US  

**Please keep in mind that this is a general recommendation for each region listed.  If your area is experiencing unusually extreme changes in weather you'll need to adjust and plant accordingly**
 


Sow Outdoors: Artichoke, Asparagus, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Beets, Carrots, Chinese Cabbage, Celery, Collards, Sweet Corn, Eggplant, Fennel, Lettuce, Melons, Bunching Onions, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Spinach, Swiss Chard,
Tomato and Watermelon.
Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!
CONTINUE READING


Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Beets, Carrots, Sweet Corn, Endive, Leeks, Lettuce, Parsnips, Peas-Snow or English, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Spinach, Swiss Chard and Tomatoes 
Basil, Chives, Cilantro, Dill, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon and Thyme
*Depending on your region, you might want to look at the APRIL planting list as well* 
CONTINUE READING



Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Beets, Cabbage, Carrots, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Peas, Peppers, Pumpkins, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Spinach, Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips and Watermelon.
Don't forget the HERBS and Wildflowers!
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Eggplant and Basil
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Artichoke, Asparagus, Bush Beans & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Celery, Collards, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Peas- Garden & Snow, Peppers, Potatoes, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes and Turnips.
Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!


FLORIDA has been split in 3 regions 
  

Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupe, Carrots, celery, Chinese Cabbage,Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Endive, Lettuce Melons, Mustard, Okra, Bunching Onions, Southern Peas, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Summer Spinach, Summer Squash & Winter Squash, Swiss Chard and Watermelon 
CONTINUE READING


Amaranth, Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupes, Carrots, Celery, Chinese Cabbage, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Kohlrabi, Okra, Bunching Onions, Southern Peas, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Radish, Spinach, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Cherry Tomatoes and Watermelon   
CONTINUE READING



Amaranth, Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupes, Carrots, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Kohlrabi, Okra, Bunching Onions, Peas-Snow or English, Southern Peas, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Radish, Spinach, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes and Watermelon
 Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cilantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow 
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!   
CONTINUE READING


Arugula, Basil, Lima Beans, Snap Beans, Yardlong Beans, Beets, Carrots, Corn, Cucumber, Melons, Okra, Onion, Peanuts, Pumpkin, Radishes, Summer Squash,
Winter Squash, Sunflower, Tomatoes and Watermelon
Plant Herbs and Wildflowers
Transplants: Artichoke, Basil, Eggplant,
Peppers and Tomatoes


*If you are starting seeds indoors or in a greenhouse,
you can plant just about anything*
Arugula, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Eggplant, Kale, Leeks, Lettuce, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes and Turnips
Plant Herbs and Wildflowers

INDOOR planting for cooler/cold areas.  If your area is warming up or already warmed up, it might be time to plant outside! 
*If you are starting seeds indoors or in a greenhouse,  
you can plant just about anything*
 
Sow Indoors/Outdoors:  Artichoke, Broccoli, Cabbage, Celery, Chard, Collards, Eggplant, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Lettuce, Onions, Pak Choy, Peppers, Radicchio, Scallion, Tomatoes, Basil, Chives, Cilantro, Marjoram, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage, Savory, and Thyme
Direct Sow: Arugula, Lettuce, Mustard and Spinach
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Basil, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Eggplant, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Lettuce, Onion, Pak Choy, Peppers, Radicchio, Tomato, Chives, Fennel, Parsley, Oregano, Sage, Tarragon and Thyme.
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beets, Carrot, Kohlrabi, Lettuce,
Pak Choy, Peas, Radish, Radicchio, Spinach, Turnips,
Outdoor Herbs: Cilantro and Parsley
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Celery, Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Onion, Peppers, Radicchio, Scallion, Spinach and Tomato.
Indoor Herbs: Basil, Chives, Cilantro, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage, Tarragon and Thyme.
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Cabbage, Celery, Eggplant, Endive, Fennel, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Lettuce, Onions, Pak Choy, Peppers, Radicchio, Scallions, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Asparagus, Beets, Carrots, Collards, Endive, Lettuce, Pak Choy, Parsnips, Peas, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnips
Herbs: Basil, Chives, Cilantro, Dill, Parsley, Sage,
Thyme and Wildflowers!
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Cabbage, Celery, Swiss Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Onions, Pak Choy, Peppers, Radicchio, Tomato.  Indoor Herbs: Basil, Chives, Cilantro, Oregano, Parsley, Rosemary, Sage and Thyme.
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beet, Carrot, Lettuce, Pak Choy, Peas, Radish, Radicchio, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnip.
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
CONTINUE READING



Helpful Links to
Get you Started    

BUILD A RAISED BED!   
We shared our Raised Bed tutorial last year but we have had so many requests lately that we shared again this year with Updates!


For 4 beds @ 4ft X 8ft we used about
5 cubic yards of soil.
Water the bed once it's filled with dirt and 
We also posted an article about
SOIL Recipes for raised bed gardens

TIME TO PLANT HEIRLOOM SEEDS!

Complete details on our blog
If you have additional questions please feel free to ask. 
Happy Planting,
http://www.facebook.com/pages/Marys-Heirloom-Seeds/229833070442449

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Seed Starting with Coconut Coir Pellets Posted on 25 Feb 07:31 , 0 comments

We've shared about Using Coconut Coir in the Garden here in several articles but we've had quite a bit of questions.  Today we're going a bit more in-depth.
 
First, Why do we use Coconut Coir instead of Peat?

Coconut coir growing medium comes from the coconut's fibrous husk (known as coir) that is bound together by lignin (known as pith). After the husk is immersed in water for 6 weeks, the fiber is extracted mechanically, and the pith is left behind as a waste product and stored in heaps to age. Since the pith comes from the fruit, it is quite naturally rich in nutrients. Coconut coir growing mediums are dehydrated and compressed into a compact form for easy handling. With the addition of water, coir expands to an easy to work with growing medium.

Unlike peat moss, which is highly acidic, coconut coir has a neutral pH level. Most garden vegetables and flowers grow best in neutral to slightly alkaline conditions. When you use peat to amend a garden bed, an addition of agricultural lime is often necessary to combat the higher acidity. With coconut coir, limestone isn't necessary unless the soil naturally has a higher pH level. Coir use results in both a monetary and a labor savings, since you don't need to purchase further pH amendments nor work them into the soil.

-Coir improves soil drainage in the bed while also helping to retain moisture in quick-draining soils. Since coir breaks down slowly, much like peat, it creates air pockets in the soil that allow excess moisture to drain away from plant roots. The coir itself holds onto some moisture so the drainage doesn't occur too quickly and the soil doesn't dry out completely. These dual drainage and retention properties allow coir to improve moisture management in both heavy clay soils and dry, sandy beds.

-Peat moss, which coir replaces as a soil amendment, takes centuries to regrow once harvested. Coir is completely sustainable since it is a natural byproduct of coconut harvests, and coconut trees produce new coconuts every year. Using the coir in the garden keeps it out of the landfill where it would otherwise go. Coir can take a century or longer to fully break down in these landfills, so it's more sustainable to use it to improve your garden soil.

Step 1: Take out your Coconut Coir Pellets.  I like to use a large tray

Step 2: Add water to tray and Coconut Coir Pellets.  Using warm water might help them "grow" faster.
Step 3: Add seeds to the hole and gently cover or "squish" coconut coir.

Step 4: Place in a warm sunny place and keep moist.  This is where the real growing happens!

Common Seed-Starting Issues

GERMINATION

-Incorrect Temperature. Different seeds have different needs.

-Old Seeds. When properly stored seeds can have a very long shelf life. But the older they get, your germination rate will begin to reduce

-Incorrect Watering. Water in a necessity for all plants. In the germination stage you need to make sure you keep the soil evenly moist. If you water too much, you run the risk of your seeds rotting before they germinate. If you let them dry out, they will either never germinate or die trying!

-Planting Depth/Light. When you plant your seeds pay attention to your planting depth. This is important because if planted too deep you plants could run out of energy before reaching sunlight. Planting too shallow can lead to drying out. Some seeds actually need some light to germinate, so instead of digging them down you just press them into your soil.


MOLD or ROTTING

Dampening off, is probably the most common disease when starting seeds. It’s a fungus that can attack the seeds as soon as they germinate or after the seedling has emerged. You will know this is what killed your seedlings when you notice dark spots on the stem right at the soil level and the seedling topples over and withers away.

-Don't over water

-Provide air movement.  A small fan will work

-Nutrients: Use a half-strength, organic fertilizer with tiny seedling.  Our DIY Kelp Meal Tea is a great option for tiny seedling.  You can use this as a foliar feed as well.


OVERCROWDING

For coconut coir pellets, plant no more than 2 seeds per pellet for small seeds and only one per pellet for larger seeds.  If both seeds germinate, do not pull one out.  Pinch off one of the seedlings at the base to remove.  This will give the remaining seedling a chance to survive and thrive.
Once your seedlings are strong and roots start to grow out of the mesh, it's time to transplant them into the garden or into your containers.
Take the entire pellet and plant into the garden.  For healthier root growth and to give plants a boost, I add a tablespoon of Azomite into each hole and mix into the dirt before transplanting the coconut coir pellet with growing seedling. I also water with a diluted version of our DIY Kelp Meal Tea when I transplant to help with shock.
 
We hope you have enjoyed our in-depth article about Seed Starting with Coconut Coir.  If you have additional questions, feel free to comment below or send an email to mary@marysheirloomseeds.com

HAPPY PLANTING!

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Using Coffee Grounds in the Garden Posted on 23 Feb 17:59 , 1 comment

We've discussed recycling and composting in the garden a few times.  There are many benefits of composting not just for the garden but also for our planet!

Before we get started with coffee grounds,
I need to mention that we just offered a 99 CENT SEED SALE
at Mary's Heirloom Seeds thru March 1st.  CLICK HERE for details.

 

If you drink coffee, you NEED to read this!  Hey, even if you don't drink coffee, you probably know someone who does and would be willing to share their coffee grounds


Composting coffee grounds is easy!  Just throw them into your compost pile or bin.  Used coffee filters can be composted as well, preferably unbleached.  If you add coffee grounds, this is considered "green material" so you'll need to balance with "brown material."

Coffee Grounds can be used as a fertilizer as it adds organic material to the soil.  This can improve drainage and water retention.  Bonus, spent coffee grounds attract earthworms!


There are many uses for Coffee Grounds in the garden.

Many gardeners like to use used coffee grounds as a mulch for their plants. Other used for coffee grounds include using it to keep slugs and snails away from plants. The theory is that the caffeine in the coffee grounds negatively affects these pests and so they avoid soil where the coffee grounds are found. Some people also claim that coffee grounds on the soil is a cat repellent and will keep cats from using your flower and veggie beds as a litter box. You can also use coffee grounds as worm food if you do vermicomposting with a worm bin. Worms are very fond of coffee grounds. 


Decomposing coffee grounds have their own fungal and mold colonies and those fungal colonies tend to fight off other fungal colonies. If this seems weird, just remember that the antibiotic penicillin was developed from a mold. The world of teeny, tiny things is fighting for space and resources just as fiercely as the world of big, visible things, and you can use that to your advantage.


Disease suppression

As they decompose, coffee grounds appear to suppress some common fungal rots and wilts, including Fusarium, Pythium, and Sclerotinia species. In these studies, coffee grounds were part of a compost mix, in one case comprising as little as 0.5 percent of the material. Researchers suggest that the bacterial and fungal species normally found on decomposing coffee grounds, such as non-pathogenic Pseudomonas,Fusarium,  andTrichodermaspp. and pin molds (Mucorales), prevent pathogenic fungi from establishing. A similar biocontrol effect was noted on bacterial pathogens including E. coliand Staphylococcusspp., which were reduced on ripening cheeses covered with coffee grounds.


Effects on plant growth

Given their antimicrobial activity, it’s not surprising that attempts to cultivate mushrooms in coffee grounds have been variable and species-specific. Likewise, their effects on plant growth are unpredictable.  Coffee ground composts and mulches have enhanced sugar beet seed germination and improved growth and yield of cabbage and soybeans. It’s been an effective replacement for peat moss in producing anthuriums. Increases in soil nitrogen as well as general mulching benefits, such as moderating soil temperature and increasing soil water, are proposed mechanisms for these increases.


Using Coffee Grounds in the Garden

-Toss them in the compost

-Add them to your vermicompost (worm bins)

-Add directly to soil for organic matter

-Mulch with coffee grounds

-Add to you Organic liquid fertilizer

-Mix with carrot seeds to improve germination and soil aeration


There you have it!  Do you use Coffee Grounds in the garden?
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NEW 99 Cent SEED SALE Posted on 23 Feb 17:42 , 0 comments

~~~SALE EXTENDED THRU MARCH 2ND~~~
I love these announcements!!!
We've added MORE new heirloom seeds @ Mary's Heirloom Seeds!


Greens and squash are a few of our garden favorites.  They are easy to grow and usually offer a tremendous harvest.  Swiss Chard for example can be harvested for months (even a year).  Our squash is usually so prolific that we are constantly giving it away by the bucketful!

Take a look at these beautiful new varieties. 

They're only 99 cents a pack thru MARCH 1st.

COCONUT COIR PELLETS are also on sale thru March 15

 

45 days.  Bibb is a fabulous tasting lettuce that is crisp, clean and easy to grow.  Bibb will hold longer in the heat than  Buttercrunch Bibb, yet still grows quickly in our cool weather.



 90 days.  Banana Melon produces a fruit that is long (18"-20") and shaped sort of like a torpedo.  Not what you would normally think of as a melon shape.  Fruit can weigh in excess of 5lbs. It has blue-grey skin that turns yellow as it matures.  Banana melons are smooth with very little netting.  In 1889 it was commonly available at farmer's markets in Philadelphia, New York and Boston.



An early ball-head type heirloom cabbage, Copenhagen Market is an excellent cabbage  that has been an favorite of gardeners, market growers and cabbage fans all over the world.  Copenhagen Market has literally set the standard as the model for all commercial cabbage varieties developed since.
 
Copenhagen Market produces a heavy yield of 4 to 5 pound, 7 inch round heads of cabbage.  Height of the plant is about 12-14" and width is about 25".



(Indeterminate) Heirloom from farmers in a Lebanese hill town. Huge pink beefsteak tomato: fruits typically weigh 16-24 oz., or even larger when well grown. A good choice for a gardener’s boast or county fair entry. Has a multidimensional sweet flavor that seems to be expressed best in northern areas. In southern areas the quality is more variable. Good foliage disease resistance.



55 days.  This patty pan type of squash dates back to the early 1900s.  The fruits are a greyish-green tint and have deeply scalloped edges.
Benning's Green Tint Scallop Squash can get pretty big but they are best harvested around 3-4 inches in diameter.



55 days.  Sugar Ann is considered one of the best early snap peas around.        
Dwarf vines only reach 2' long (not a bush), but are loaded with sweet, crisp, 2 1/2" peas.  Perfect for those with limited planting space.  We simply cannot get enough of these for stir fries.  They are so crisp and sweet we eat them raw in salads as well.


2 VARIETIES that aren't NEW but we've decided to offer
on sale as well thru MARCH 1st.

 

Don't miss out on our special on

THAT'S ALL FOR NOW!  HAPPY PLANTING!

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HEIRLOOM TOMATO ANNOUNCEMENT & SALE Posted on 15 Feb 06:55 , 1 comment

We sent this out yesterday to our e-mail list but thought it would be nice to share to our blog as well.  Happy Planting!

Mary's Heirloom Seeds
Quick Links
Join Our List
A few favorites @MARY'S HEIRLOOM SEEDS
February 14, 2017
We are SUPER excited to announce the addition of several new (to us)
As promised, we're continuing to add heirloom varieties to our already unique selection at Mary's Heirloom Seeds.  As an added bonus, the varieties we are announcing today are on Sale thru February 19th!

HEIRLOOM TOMATO SEEDS added today!!!    

Seeds listed in this section are ON SALE thru February 19th.  
We have a $10 order minimum 
with the free shipping option. 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
*Excellent for HOT climates*
 
 
If you're wondering what to plant, 
check out our
and 
Also ON SALE thru February 19th @ Mary's Heirloom Seeds




If you have additional questions please feel free to ask. 

 

Happy Planting,

 

Mary's Heirloom Seeds, P. O. Box 3763, Ramona, CA 92065

February Planting Guide for the US-Find Your Region Posted on 07 Feb 04:51 , 0 comments

Mary's Heirloom Seeds
Quick Links
Join Our List
February 6, 2017
In case you missed it, we offer region specific planting guide for entire year on our blog
Mary's 2017 Planting Guide

I don't know about you but sometimes even I need a reminder of what to plant next month.  Plus, we're always offering new specials and posting new seed varieties.

**Don't forget, we have a 50% Off Sale going on thru February 10th**

FEBRUARY SEED PLANTING GUIDE FOR THE US  

**Please keep in mind that this is a general recommendation for each region listed.  If your area is experiencing unusually extreme changes in weather you'll need to adjust and plant accordingly**

 


Sow Indoors:  Swiss Chard, Eggplant, Fennel, Peppers, Bunching Onions (Scallions), Tomatoes, Basil and Chives.
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Artichoke, Asparagus, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrot, Cauliflower, Chinese Cabbage, Collards, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Bulbing Onion, Bunching Onion, Peas- Snow & Snap, Potatoes, Radish, Rutabaga,  Spinach and Turnips
Indoor  HERBS: Cilantro, Dill, Fennel, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Sorrel, Tarragon and Thyme.
CONTINUE READING


Sow indoors in early February. Sow Outdoors in late February: Arugula, Asparagus, Basil, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Cilantro, Chives, Endive, Leeks, Lettuce, Mustard, Parsley, Peas, Radish
CONTINUE READING


Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrot, Cauliflower, Celery, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Lettuce, Melon, Okra, Onion, Rutabaga, Pea, Pepper, Pumpkin, Radish, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomato and Watermelon
CONTINUE READING


*Plant indoors if February is before your last frost date*
Arugula, Artichoke, Asparagus, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Carrots, Celery, Chinese Cabbage, Swiss Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Fennel, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Onions, Peas- English & Garden, Radish, Radicchio, Scallions, Sorrel and Spinach. For warmer parts of the gulf coast: Peppers, Squash, Tomatoes and Watermelon.
CONTINUE READING 


FLORIDA has been split in 3 regions 
  

Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupes, Carrots, celery, Chinese Cabbage, Collards, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Endive, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Mustard, Okra, Bunching Onions, Peas-Snow or English, Southern Peas, Peppers, Sweet Potatoes, Radish, Spinach, Summer Squash & Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes and Watermelon   
Pretty much EVERY  Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!   
CONTINUE READING


Arugula, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cantaloupes, Carrots, Cauliflower, celery, Chinese Cabbage, Collards, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Mustard, Okra, Bunching Onions, Peas-Snow or English, Southern Peas, Peppers, Potatoes, Sweet Potatoes, Radish, Spinach, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips and Watermelon
Pretty much EVERY   Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!   
CONTINUE READING


Amaranth, Arugula, Beets, Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cantaloupes, Carrots, Cauliflower, celery, Chinese Cabbage, Collards, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Mustard, Bunching Onions, Peas-Snow or English, Peppers, Potatoes, Radish, Spinach, Summer Squash, Winter Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips and Watermelon
Pretty much EVERY   Herb!! Don't forget the  Wildflowers!   
CONTINUE READING


Basil, Arugula, Beets, Pak Choy, Carrots, Swiss Chard, Collard greens, Corn, Cucumbers, Melon, Mustard Greens, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Potatoes, Radishes, Spinach, Summer Squash, Sunflower, Tomatoes, Turnips and Watermelon
Plant Herbs and Wildflowers
Transplant: Artichoke, Swiss Chard, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Peppers and Tomatoes


INDOOR planting for cooler areas

Sow Indoors: Artichoke, Asparagus, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Chard, Fava Bean, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Onion, Pak Choy, Peas, Radicchio, Rhubarb, Spinach and HERBS!
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Asparagus, Broccoli, Cabbage, Celery, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Onion, Radicchio, Chives, Fennel, Parsley, Oregano, Sage, Tarragon and Thyme
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Arugula, Artichoke, Asparagus, Cabbage, Celery, Endive, Kale, Leek, Lettuce, Onion, Radicchio, Scallion, Sorrel and Spinach.
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Arugula, Broccoli, Celery, Swiss Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Fennel, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Lettuce, Onions, Pak Choy, Peppers, Radicchio, Rhubarb Scallions, Tomatoes, Basil and Chives.
CONTINUE READING


Sow Indoors: Artichoke, Arugula, Asparagus, Broccoli, Cabbage, Celery, Swiss Chard, Eggplant, Endive, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leek, Lettuce, Onions, Peppers, Radicchio, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnips.
CONTINUE READING


Helpful Links to
Get you Started    
NEW SEEDS!!   
If you have additional questions please feel free to ask. 

 

Happy Planting,

 

Mary's Heirloom Seeds, P. O. Box 3763, Ramona, CA 92065

SOIL Recipes for Raised Bed Gardens Posted on 31 Jan 14:33 , 4 comments

I love our raised bed gardens!!!  There are so many benefits such as less water usage, almost zero weeding and best of all, LOTS of food produced in a small space.

I've had so many questions about what to use for Garden Soil.  The thing is, you can ask all of the "experts" and there is no absolute "right" way.  No one way works for everyone so below you will find some of the recommended recipes for gardens beds.  You'll also find my own recommendations based on what has worked for me.

Vegetable plants need loose, free-draining soil with readily available nutrients to produce abundantly. Each year's crop takes a bit of the nutrient base of the soil with it, so this must be returned on an annual basis to keep the garden productive.  This means adding amendments every year to maintain a healthy balance of nutrients.

First, a caution for the thrifty.  Be wary of advertisements for cheap or free bulk topsoil, as this material is generally scraped from construction sites and may be full of roots and rocks, making it unsuitable planting vegetables. Go to the landscape supply yard and look at the options to make sure you are getting a loose, clean, lightweight material that has compost already mixed in.

If you are building and filling  multiple beds, buying bagged soil isn't economical.  Call around your area and ask for bulk organic topsoil.  You might not be able to find "organic" soil so you can always ask for untreated soil.

1 - 4 foot by 4 foot raised bed takes 16 cubic feet of soil or approx 1/2 a cubic yard of soil

I saw one recipe that called for 1/3 Peat moss, 1/3 vermiculite and 1/3 compost.

This is not a recipe I use.  First, peat moss is on the acidic side.  Coconut Coir is neutral and a more sustainable addition to your garden.  Next, too much vermiculite will keep your soil from retaining moisture and nutrients.

Here's another recipe I found:
  • 3 parts compost
  • 1 part peat moss 
  • 1 part vermiculite

Here's my all time favorite from Rodales:
You want the kind that’s dark, rich, and loaded with microorganisms. Fill your beds with a mix of 50 to 60 percent good-quality topsoil and 40 to 50 percent well-aged compost. Before each new growing season, test your soil for pH and nutrient content. You can buy a kit at most home-improvement stores. If your test shows a need for additional nutrients like nitrogen and potassium, raise levels by working in amendments such as bone meal and kelp. Dress beds with an additional ½ inch of compost later in the growing season to increase organic matter and boost soil health. 

I use my own version of the above recipe.  I add coconut coir to each bed.  Depending on what I'm planting, if it needs lighter soil I'll add a bit of vermiculite.  Most of our beds are fed with our own DIY Organic Liquid Fertilizer Mix

We've been building up our own compost and amending the topsoil we purchased by the truckload several years ago.  If you are just getting started, you might have to shop around for a healthy option.


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