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Day 5-Basic Nutrient Requirements Posted on 17 May 13:24 , 0 comments

Welcome to Day 5 of our series Grow Your Own Food in 100 Days or Less.

WE HAVE GERMINATION!


Actually, we had germination of the Early Scarlet Globe radish on Day 4 (3 days to germinate) but I'm sharing the update today.  Here's our video update for the day.  Today topic is Basic Nutrient Requirements to Grow Veggies




Basic Nutrient Requirements to Grow Veggies

Well-balanced soil in the vegetable garden will contain a mix of several important nutrients: nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium.  I call those the basics.  However, there are 12 essential nutrients that all plants require to grow.  Six of these are needed in larger amounts and are called macronutrients.  These include Nitrogen (N), Phosphorus (P), Calcium (K), Calcium (Ca), Magnesium (Mg) and Sulfur (S).  The other six are called micronutrients and they are iron, copper, zinc, boron, manganese and molybdenum.  While these are considered minor, there is nothing unimportant about them.


From an older post "Feeding Your Plants"

What does each nutrient do? 
In addition to other properties, Nitrogen helps plant foliage to grow strong. Phosphorous helps roots and flowers grow and develop. Potassium (Potash) is important for overall plant health.


We've grown HUGE, organic zucchini using our own recipe for Liquid Fertilizer!


Liquid Fertilizers are favored by most gardeners, regardless of what they are growing. We use our own DIY Liquid Fertilizer mix.  Most liquid fertilizers can be applied as a foliar feeding directly to the leaves, hand applied to secondary roots, and included in the water supply of drip or other irrigation systems.

Aside from cost(and it is not that much), liquid fertilizers have almost no downside. They include all the macronutrients  and micronutrients needed for good growth. In addition, because they are in a water soluble state, they can easily be absorbed by the plant.
 

Here's our video for our DIY Organic Liquid Fertilizer recipe




What do the Macronutrients do for plants?

Nitrogen (N)
Nitrogen is the fuel that makes plants go. It’s used to synthesize amino acids, proteins, chlorophyll, nucleic acids, and enzymes. Plants need more nitrogen than any other element. It’s the nutrient we most often have to apply.  Compost and manure are "free" ways to add nitrogen to your soil


Phosphorus (P)
Phosphorus is the nutrient responsible for plant rooting, flowering and fruiting.  Bone meal is one form of Phosporus that can be added to your garden soil.


Potassium (K)
Potassium is important to plant growth and development. Potassium helps: Plants grow faster, Use water better and be more drought resistant, Fight off disease, Grow stronger and even Produce more crops


Calcium (Ca)
Calcium helps to retain and transport other nutrients by providing strength and structure through its cell walls.  Oyster Shell is an easy option to add to your soil to increase calcium
 

Magnesium (Mg)
Helps activate plants enzymes and part of chlorophyll and photosynthesis. Magnesium works in conjunction with calcium


Sulfur (S)

Sulfur is essential for the production of protein and chlorophyll.


 

A great "all-in-one" is our Mary's Organic Plant Food or our Vegan Plant Food. From there, you can choose any "extras" you'd like to add such as Endo-Mycorrhizae, Micronized Azomite or Mountain Flower Root Boost.



Thank you for joining us for another day of Grow Your Own Food in 100 Days or Less.  If you have additional questions please send an email to mary@marysheirloomseeds.com

Happy Planting!


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Growing Sunflowers from Seed to Harvest Posted on 23 Mar 04:59 , 1 comment

Sunflowers add so much color to the garden.  They're so bright and beautiful, naturally attracting bird and beneficial pollinators.

An annual plant, sunflowers have big, daisy-like flower faces of bright yellow (or red) petals.

Sunflowers grow best in locations with full sun. They are hardy flowers and will grow in any kind of soil as long as it is not waterlogged.

Sunflower seeds, leaves and stems emit substances that inhibit the growth of certain other plants. They should be separated from potatoes and pole beans.

It’s best to sow sunflower seeds directly into the soil after the danger of spring frost is past. Ideally, the soil temperature has reached 55 to 60 degrees F.

Space seeds about 6 inches apart in a shallow trench and sow 1/4 inch to and 1 inch deep depending on the seed size.  Smaller seeds don't need to be planted very deep while larger seeds should be planted 1 inch deep.  Make rows about 30 inches apart. (For very small varieties, plant closer together.)

Cover and keep watered until seeds sprout in 7 to 10 days.  When first true leaves appear (the second set of leaves); thin plants to about 2 feet apart.

 

Feed plants sparingly; overfertilization can cause stems to break in the fall. You can add diluted fertilizer into the water, though avoid getting the fertilizer near the plant’s base; it may help to build a moat in a circle around the plant about 18 inches out.

Harvesting for flowers:

Cut stems early in the morning. Harvesting flowers during middle of the day may lead to flower wilting

Handle sunflowers gently. The flowers should last at least a week in water at room temperature

Harvesting for Seeds:

To harvest seeds, keep an eye out for ripeness. The back of the flower head will turn from green to yellow and the bracts will begin to dry and turn brown; this happens about 30 to 45 days after bloom and seed moisture is about 35%. Generally, when the head turns brown on the back, seeds are ready for harvest.

To protect the seeds from birds, you can cover the flowers with a light fabric (such as cheesecloth) and a rubber band.

Cut the head off the plant (about 4 inches below the flower head) and remove the seeds with your fingers or a fork.

 

Here's a recent video about Planting a Kid's Garden with Sunflowers

 


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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Grow MORE Spend Less Posted on 15 Mar 06:41 , 0 comments

We hope you have enjoyed all of the "growing" and plant spacing articles so far.  We are frugal people and I love a good DIY project in the garden that doesn't require spending a bunch of money.  A few examples from previous articles include Start A Bucket Garden or our videos about Using Manure in the Garden and Composting Basics with Mary.

So how do we Grow MORE and Spend Less?

As we mentioned above, recycling in the garden is a GREAT place to start.

-Food scraps and yard "waste" can be composted to use as "free" nutrients for your plants

-Recycled containers can be used for seed starting and growing

-If you have livestock or know someone with animals (rabbit, chicken, goat, cow, pig, horse, alpaca) then you might ask them for their manure.  Rabbit manure can be used immediately but the rest should be composted for 3-12 months depending on the animal.

-Collect & save water. Rain water, grey water systems and "shower buckets" are great ways to save

Free shipping and free seeds!

At Mary's Heirloom Seeds we offer free shipping on heirloom seeds within the US with a $10 order minimum.  As an added bonus we also include a free pack of seeds with your purchase!

 

99 Cent Seed packs to help you grow more!

Our unique selection of sale seeds and every-day 99 cent packs are another great way to grow more and save.  Some of these varieties will grow large, delicious veggies.

Black Beauty Zucchini

We don't always let them grow this large but these were great as zoodles.  Some of these are over 14 inches long

 

Hubbard Blue Squash

From a single seed we grew several Hubbard Blue Squash.  This one was 16 1/2 pounds

 

Japanese Giant Red Mustard

This truly lives up to it's name as a giant mustard green.  It's a bit spicy but delicious!

 

Red Mammoth Mangel Beet

The smaller beet on the left is an early Wonder heirloom beet and on the right is Red Mammoth Mangel beet. The Red Mammoth Mangel Beet is known as a "fodder beet" and was picked small at only 3 1/8 lb
https://www.marysheirloomseeds.com/collections/heirloom-beets
Fodder beets have been around since the 1400s if not earlier. These beets were prized as nutritious animal feed that was easy to store. Fodder beets are hardy, adaptable and palatable. They are ideal for planting in late summer for use as a winter and spring crop.
Red Mammoth Mangel Beets produce an incredible mass of edible beet leaves and a large root up to 20 pounds or more in size

 

NJ Wakefield Cabbage is another great option as each pack contains 200 seeds for only 99 Cents!

SWISS CHARD

The outer leaves of the Swiss Chard can be harvested as needed and it will continue to produce.  We have had plants that lasted for a year so you can see why Swiss Chard made the list

 

HEIRLOOM TOMATOES

Homegrown heirloom tomatoes are so flavorful.  There are so many unique varieties to choose from that you cannot purchase from the store

 

These are just a few example of how to grow more & spend less.

HELPFUL LINKS


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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GIVE PEAS A CHANCE Posted on 2 Feb 05:51 , 0 comments

Mary's Heirloom Seeds Newsletter
Give PEAS A Chance


Seed Combo Packs
 
 
   
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OUR VIDEOS
SPRING is almost here and we can feel it!
have you enjoyed our planting tutorials so far?

As a bonus this weekend, we've added a few of our
Heirloom Pea seeds to our
99 Cent Seed Pack Collection

If you have additional questions we're happy to help!
 
Give PEAS A Chance!
 From our blog
Most PEAS are a cool weather crop.  Sweet Peas (garden peas), Snap Peas and Snow Peas are cool weather crops.  Southern Peas are heat tolerant and grow well in HOT climates. 
 
SUGAR ANN SNAP PEAS
PEAS, in my opinion, are one of the most under rated crops.  
-They are SO EASY to grow
-Seed saving is simple
-High Yield Crops in smaller spaces
-Some varieties are more pest resistant than others

 
 

Are you ready to grow PEAS?
 
From the Old Farmer's Almanac
PLANTING
  • To get the best head start, turn over your pea planting beds in the fall, add manure to the soil, and mulch well.
  • As with other legumes, pea roots will fix nitrogen in the soil, making it available for other plants.
  • Peas will appreciate a good sprinkling of wood ashes to the soil before planting.
  • Sow seeds outdoors 4 to 6 weeks before last spring frost, when soil temperatures reach 45 degrees F.
  • Plant 1 inch deep (deeper if soil is dry) and 2 inches apart.
  • Get them in the ground while the soil is still cool but do not have them sit too long in wet soil. It's a delicate balance of proper timing and weather conditions. For soil that stays wet longer, invest in raised beds.
  • A blanket of snow won't hurt emerging pea plants, but several days with temperatures in the teens could. Be prepared to plant again.
  • Peas are best grown in temperatures below 70 degrees F.
 
 

Wondering WHEN to plant peas in your area?   
See Mary's 2018 Planting Guide for your region-specific planting info

BIG RED RIPPER (MANDY) SOUTHERN PEA


Intercrop peas with fast-growing cool-season crops such as spinach or radishes. After final harvest, follow with late squash plantings or fall-harvested cool-season crops such as broccoli, leeks or potatoes. 
Sow fall crops about 8 to 10 weeks before first frost date. Fall crops can be disappointing if hot weather persists. Powdery-mildew-resistant varieties are best for fall crops.

Do not use high-nitrogen fertilizers. Too much nitrogen will result in lush foliage but poor flowering and fruiting. Inoculation with Mycorrhizae may be beneficial if peas have not been grown in the past.

Do not plant peas in the same place more than once in every 4 years. Avoid planting where in places where peas have suffered before from root rot. 

Peas:  Plant with Beans, carrot, corn, cucumber, radish, turnips, SAGE, spinach, mint and potatoes.  Avoid planting with Onions and Garlic.

 
 


HARVESTING PEAS 
From Mother Earth News 
To avoid mangling the vines, use two hands to harvest peas. When green peas are ripe, harvest them daily, preferably in the morning. Pick snow peas when the pods reach full size and the peas inside are just beginning to swell. For best flavor and yields, allow snap peas to change from flat to plump before picking them. Gather sweet green shell peas when the pods begin to show a waxy sheen, but before their color fades.  

Immediately refrigerate picked peas to stop the conversion of sugar to starches and maintain the peas' crisp texture. Promptly blanch and freeze your extra peas.
 
If you have additional questions please feel free to ask.  We are happy to help!
 
Sincerely,                                   
Mary
The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest her or his patients in the care of the human frame, in a proper diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.
Thomas A. Edison 

 "The garden suggests there might be a place where we can meet nature halfway."
Michael Pollan 

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

 


Growing Pak Choy Cabbage from Seed to Harvest Posted on 11 Jan 16:39 , 0 comments

There are so many unique varieties of heirloom cabbage to grow in your garden.  Pak Choy is one of our favorite varieties of Chinese cabbage.

DWARF PAK CHOY CABBAGE

 

From our article Growing Cabbage from Seed to Harvest

"Chinese cabbage, often called Chinese leaves in supermarkets are the odd one out in the cabbage family. They look more like a cos lettuce than a cabbage for starters.

The cultivation method is completely different than conventional cabbage as well, they do not like root disturbance and usually would be sown in situ rather than being transplanted.

Cultivation of Chinese Cabbage

Like the other brassicas they like a rich soil with a high pH - neutral at least..

Sow about 3 or 4 seeds at 30cm spacing each way, usually in May although some fast growing varieties can go in as late as early August and thin to the strongest seedling. Harvest is from late September to min-November."  Allotment Vegetable Growing

 

Cabbage is best grown in a temperate climate, and should be planted in an open and sunny spot that can either be in full sun or partial shade.

Soil Conditions

Most types of cabbage require a well-draining, light - medium soil with a neutral pH of about 6.5 - 7.0.

When growing cabbage, the soil should be prepared well in advance, especially if you are enriching the soil with organic matter. If you are sowing the cabbage seeds in spring, prepare the soil in autumn by digging in plenty of well-rotted compost or manure.

 

Planting Seeds

Sow the seeds at 1/4 - ½ inch deep.  If you are direct sowing, leave 6 inches between rows. When seedlings reach a height 4 - 6 inches and have 5 or 6 true leaves, they will be ready to transplant.

It is best to water in the evening, the day before you are due to transplant, and then plant the seedlings 12-18 inches apart for spring cabbage. Allow approximately 1 foot between rows. Make sure that you firm down the soil around the plants.

Hoe around the plants to remove all weeds and apply a mulch to suppress weeds from appearing. Mulch will also retain moisture, which is extremely important during the hot weather. The cabbage plants must not be allowed to dry out, as it will affect their growth. 

PAK CHOY CABBAGE

 

Practice crop rotation with cabbage year to year to avoid a buildup of soil borne diseases.

Although cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower are closely related, and require similar nutrients, it’s best not to plant them together. They are all heavy feeders, depleting the soil faster of required nutrients; plus, they will attract the same pests and diseases.

 

Companion Plants for Cabbage

Celery, dill, onions and potatoes are good companion plants. Celery improves growth and health. Clover interplanted with cabbage has been shown to reduce the native cabbage aphid and cabbageworm populations by interfering with the colonization of the pests and increasing the number of predatory ground beetles. Plant Chamomile with cabbage as it Improves growth and flavor. Cabbage does not get along with strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, eggplants, rue, grapes, lettuce and pole beans.

 

Organic Pest Control for Cabbage

DIY Organic Pest Control Recipes

Diatomaceous Earth is one option. No preparations necessary!   DE kills aphids, white flies, beetles, loopers, mites, snails, slugs, leaf hoppers, and harmful pests. Use DE inside your greenhouse or outdoors on fruits, vegetables, flowers, grains and grass. Apply Food Grade Diatomaceous Earth up to and including day of harvest. Check out Using Diatomaceous Earth for Non-Toxic, Natural Pest control 

 

Harvesting Cabbage is easy.  Simply lift the whole vegetable from the ground with a garden fork or spade, or cut the stem, just above the lowest leaves of the plant.


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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How to Grow Luffa from Seed Posted on 10 Jan 18:28 , 2 comments

You've probably heard of a luffa sponge and you might have even used them.  Did you know that a luffa sponge is actually a gourd?  Luffa is one of our favorite crops to grow.

 

What is a Luffa?

Luffa (Luffa aegyptiaca and Luffa acutangula), also known as loofah, vegetable sponge or dishcloth gourds, are grown mainly for their useful fibrous tissue skeleton. Young fruits can be eaten as squash, used in stews or even used in place of cucumbers.

Growing luffa is really fun but it definitely takes patience. Luffa is cold sensitive and takes a long time to mature into a dried sponge.  From seed, Luffa takes 120-200 days to fully mature.

 

Growing Luffa from Seed

Soak Luffa seeds for 24 hours before planting.

Sow luffa seeds 8 to 12 inches apart along a fence as soon as the ground is warm enough to work and all danger of frost has passed in spring.

In more northern areas of the country most gardeners start seeds in pots (at least 4", but 5" or 6" are even better, so roots can expand) inside a few weeks before planting time and then transplant them outdoors once the weather is warm and settled.

Luffa vines can grow to around 30 feet long and need a strong trellis to grow on so be prepared to give them a sturdy support such as a fence or trellis.

 

Taking Care of Luffa Plants

Increase your success at germination by starting your seeds in coconut coir.

When the weather is right (warm soil and air) start hardening off your seedlings.  This is more important than with most other plants because Luffa are so prone to transplant shock.

After a week or so of hardening off, plant your seedlings in an area that gets FULL sun.

Keep the Luffa watered.  During summer, I water daily.

Feed your luffa plants every 4 to 6 weeks with a diluted liquid fertilizer or compost tea.

 

 

Harvesting Luffa

The very first fruits that appear on the vine should be allowed to mature into sponges.

Luffa sponges are mature and ready to pick when the green skin has turned dark yellow or brown and starts to separate from the fiber inside, and the fruit feels lightweight. Leave fruit hanging on the vine as long as possible for maximum sponge fiber development, but be sure to pick and peel the fruit immediately if they get hit by frost.

First, peel off the tough outer skin: If it is already cracked you can pull it off in pieces, if it is intact try squashing the fruit gently until cracks appear and then extending the cracks by squeezing the fruit and pulling at the torn edges of the skin with your thumbs. If the skin is very dry, soaking the fruit in water for a few minutes may make it easier to dislodge the skin. 

Once the skin has been removed, shake out the seeds.  Next, wash the sap out of the sponge with a strong jet of water or in a bucket of water with a little dishwashing.

Finally, dry the washed sponges in the sun, turning them frequently, until completely dry. Store in a cloth bag to prevent them from getting dusty and they will keep for years.

 

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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ORGANIC GARLIC Announcement Posted on 5 Jul 06:33 , 0 comments

 
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Sent out July 1, 2017
Did you plant Organic Garlic last year?  If you did, don't forget to let it cure after harvest. 

We are planning and mapping out our gardens for our next Organic Garlic planting.  I was so impressed at how well our raised beds grew this past season that we're expanding into several new beds this October.

**Please read:  We are now allowing customers to reserve their Organic Garlic before anyone else.**
Very Important:  Please be sure to read our ordering info at the top of our Organic Garlic page.
 
ORDERING ORGANIC GARLIC 

The information provided below is available on our website.  Please read before purchasing organic garlic

Pre-Orders: July thru August 20th are scheduled to ship out October 1st

ALL Order placed after August 20th will ship out after October 30th. Organic garlic will be available for purchase until October 15th unless we are sold our before that date. *Subject to change* 
All of our Garlic varieties are sourced from  Certified organic growers and grown in the USA

***PLEASE READ***
As we ship on a first come, first serve basis, your order may not ship until days or weeks later. You will receive an email when your order ships.

Last year we sold out in Mid-September and were unable to accept additional orders.

Please purchase additional items in a separate order.  ALL orders containing organic garlic will ship TOGETHER after October 1st
We are unable to ship our garlic outside of the United states
Garlic varieties @
Mary's Heirloom Seeds  
 
HARDNECK
Rocambole garlic has wrappers that are typically reddish in color, such as Killarney Red.  However, color is not the only requirement for this category, as some varieties may be white or purple colored. Rocambole scapes are more tightly curled than other varieties.  Most rocambole varieties produce 8 to 10 cloves per head.

SOFTNECK
Softneck garlic, also called artichoke garlic due to their numerous cloves that give them an appearance similar to the "petals" of an artichoke head, is the most common garlic due to its excellent storage characteristics.  This is the kind you will find in grocery stores.   
**Softnecks are the most heat tolerant of garlic, and have a sweeter, milder flavor than hardnecks.  If you're looking to make garlic braids, this is the type to grow.
Inchelium Red is a softneck variety 
 
JUST A TIP: Soak garlic cloves in Organic Kelp Meal and water for 2 hours before planting.



Not a Garlic variety but also available for pre-order and scheduled to ship out in September: FRENCH RED SHALLOTS

 

One important factor in planting garlic is PLANNING AHEAD.  First, because garlic takes 6 months or more to grow so you'll need a suitable spot.  Second because organic garlic bulbs are not available year-round. 
There is usually a short window to purchase "seed garlic" and then it's gone.

 
At Mary's Heirloom Seeds we offer "pre-orders" of Organic Garlic from July thru August 20th.  This allows customers to reserve their garlic in advance before we have a chance to sell out.  We continue to accept orders of Organic Garlic thru October 15th but there is always a chance that we'll sell out before that date.


SUGGESTED PLANTING TIME FOR GARLIC

Please remember that these are "suggested" dates. You'll find that different sources might have different dates.  I tend to be a bit of a rebel gardener so I sometimes plant earlier and sometimes later. 


Central Midwest: October. Early November in a pinch

Gulf Coast: October thru November

Maritime Canada & New England: October

Mid Atlantic: October

North Central & Rockies: Late September and into October

Pacific Northwest: Late September and into October.  Early November in a pinch

Southern Interior: October. Early November in a pinch   
Southwest: October thru November

Alaska: September

Hawaii: Late September thru October

San Diego: October thru November

North Florida: October thru February 
Central Florida: October thru February 
South Florida: October thru February 
**October thru December might give you a better chance at a successful crop**
 

If you have additional questions please feel free to ask. 

 

Happy Planting,

 

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

JULY SEED PLANTING GUIDE FOR THE US Posted on 22 Jun 16:00 , 3 comments

Mary's Heirloom Seeds Newsletter
JULY Seed Planting Guide for the US by Region


NEW ARRIVALS ADDED TODAY!


Also know as Naguri Squash. A winter squash variety. 
Portuguese sailors introduced kabocha to Japan in 1541, bringing it with them from Cambodia.



This beautiful heirloom comes from Turkey. The 3" round fruit are best cooked when they are green to light orange.


RECENT ADDITIONS:




   
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JULY is right around the corner and before you know it, it's time for FALL Planting!!!

Several customers have asked about Garlic
We will be offering Organic Garlic (seed garlic)
on July 1, 2017
Mark your calendar!
 
 
JULY Seed Starting Guide
for the US by Region
 

Arugula Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Beets, Brussels Sprouts, Carrots, Cauliflower, Celery, Sweet Corn, Endive, Pie Pumpkins, Radish, Radicchio, Summer Squash and Tomatoes
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!

Squash Blossoms
 

 
Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Pumpkin, Summer Squash, Winter Squash and Tomatoes
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Cantaloupe, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, Melons, Mustard Greens, Southern Peas, Pumpkin, Summer Squash and Winter Squash
Transplant: Melons, Peppers, Pumpkin,  Summer Squash, Winter Squash and Tomatoes

 
 
Arugula, Beans, Beets Corn, Cucumber, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard Greens, Okra, Peas, Peppers, Pumpkin, Radish, Radicchio, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard and Cherry Tomatoes
Don't forget the  Wildflowers!
 

Cosmic Purple Carrot 
   
 

Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage  
and Cauliflower 
Sow Outdoors: Beans, Carrots, Collards, Cucumber, Okra, Peas, Pumpkin, Rutabaga and Winter Squash 
Transplant: Eggplant, Peppers and Tomatoes
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
Don't forget the  Herbs  and   Wildflowers!

Small Sugar Pumpkin
 


Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Kale, Leeks and Lettuce
Sow Outdoors: Bean, Beets, Carrots, Chard,
Collards, Cucumber, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard Greens,
Okra, Peas, Radish, Rutabaga, Summer Squash,
Winter Squash and Turnips
Don't forget the Herbs  and  Wildflowers

RADISH in a few as 25 days
    
 
 
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beets, Carrots, Kale, Lettuce, Mustard Greens, Radicchio, Radish, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach and Turnips 
Transplant: Broccoli, Cabbage and Cauliflower
Don't forget the  Herbs  and  Wildflowers!

 

 
Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Kale, Kohlrabi and Lettuce
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Beets, Carrots, CHARD, Collards, Cucumber, Endive, Kale, Leeks, Peas, Pumpkins, Radish, Rutabaga, Summer Squash, Winter Squash and Turnips
Transplant: Broccoli, Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Kale, Leeks, Lettuce and Turnips
Our Favorite Herbs:  Basil, Borage, Catnip, Chives, Cilantro, Dill, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Parsley
Don't forget the  Wildflowers!




Sow Indoors: Broccoli, Cabbage, Celery, Kale, Kohlrabi, Leeks and Lettuce
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Beets, Carrots, CHARD, Endive, Kale, Lettuce, Mustard Greens, Radish, Rutabaga, Scallions and Turnip
Transplant: Brussels Sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Celery, Endive, Kale, Leek, Lettuce,
Don't forget the Herbs  and  Wildflowers!

LETTUCE


Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Carrots, Corn, Cucumbers, Eggplant, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard Greens, Onions, Radishes, Rutabaga, Summer Squash, Peppers, Tomatoes and Turnips
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!

PEPPERS


Sow Indoors: Eggplant, Peppers and Tomatoes
Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Corn, Okra, Peas, Pumpkin, Winter Squash and Watermelon
Transplant: Peppers and Tomatoes
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  WILDFLOWERS!  
  

Sow Outdoors: Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Cucumber, Lettuce, Peas, Radish, Rutabaga, Spinach, 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
Don't forget the  Wildflowers 
   
If you have additional questions please feel free to ask.  What will YOU plant this JULY?
 
Sincerely,                                   
Mary
The doctor of the future will give no medicine, but will interest her or his patients in the care of the human frame, in a proper diet, and in the cause and prevention of disease.
Thomas A. Edison 

 "The garden suggests there might be a place where we can meet nature halfway."
Michael Pollan 

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

Grow 20-Pound Plants Our Ancestors Grew Posted on 17 May 12:47 , 0 comments

As a homesteader, we are always looking for old varieties of heirloom seeds to feed our family and animals.  I find that heirloom varieties have withstood the test of time and are plenty hardy to sustain our farming endeavors.  We've grown quite a few HUGE varieties of veggies here using beyond organic standards and eco-friendly practices.

We grew Zucchini that was over 16 inches long (Delicious zucchini bread, stir fry and zoodles from the big ones)
BLACK BEAUTY ZUCCHINI

We also grew Turnips that were almost 5 pounds!  
PURPLE TOP WHITEGLOBE TURNIP
*Most were about 1-2 pounds*


Our Fordhook Giant Swiss Chard became famous when it grew over 5 feet tall.  This isn't a normal size for swiss chard.  I let it grow to let it bolt and give me seeds


Mary's Heirloom Seeds now offers almost 500 varieties of heirloom seeds but today we're going to share with you about an OLD variety that can grow 20 pounds each.
 
Red Mammoth Mangel Beets produce an incredible mass of edible beet leaves and a large root up to 20 pounds or more in size!    These beets prefer deeply tilled, free draining, sandy soil to achieve full size. Simply allow your animals to graze on the tops, cut the tops for feeding or harvest the root. 

Fodder beets have been around since the 1400s if not earlier.  These beets were prized as nutritious animal feed that was easy to store.  Fodder beets are hardy, adaptable and palatable. They are ideal for planting in late summer for use as a winter and spring crop. 
Early harvested (smaller) Red Mammoth Mangel Beet
Mangel beets prefer neutral soil and are capable of thriving in less-than-ideal soil conditions. Full sun, however, is a necessity. Sow seeds directly into the prepared soil one month before the final frost date for early harvest, 10 to 12 weeks before the fall frost date for a late harvest. Seeds should be placed two inches apart and seedlings must be thinned out early. Rows should be spaced no less than 12 inches apart. A moderate amount of rainfall or irrigation is necessary for optimal growth to facilitate this, and a light covering of mulch may be necessary to retain moisture in drier climates.
 
The greens can be harvested at any time. Plucking a few leaves from each plant will not stress the root and will allow you or your livestock to enjoy nutrient-rich greens for many weeks. Carefully monitored and controlled grazing may be acceptable in the last few weeks before harvest.
 
Traditionally, mangel beets are not used as livestock fodder until January. During the time between harvest and January, certain components begin to break down in the root, making them easier to digest and less likely to cause digestive issues in your livestock.
 
To supplement your poultry feed and provide a pecking distraction, simply hang a beetroot in the coop. Greens can be fed to the poultry, as well. For other livestock, including cattle, horses, pigs and goats, beets are best sliced or cut into chunks before adding them in the daily ration of feed.
Are mangel beets edible for humans? Absolutely!  Just one crop of Mangel Beets (for us) is enough to store for an entire year of eating!
 
Last year we even grew a German Giant Radish that was over 12 inches long.  Again, we let it "bolt" and produce seeds but I wasn't expecting it to be so large.

 
Planning for the future is important. In the words of Jack Reacher (Lee Child), "Hope for the Best. Plan for the worst." While we cannot predict the loss of income, unexpected medical bills or car repairs, we should plan ahead and prepare the best we can.
 
You might also enjoy reading my article You Don't Need a Farm to Grow Food
 
If you're looking to grow large crops for fodder, the Red Mammoth Mangel Beet is a GREAT option.  If you're looking to grow bigger veggies, we can help.  You might like our article Easiest Veggies to Grow from Seed to Harvest and Feeding Your Plants-Updated.
 
If you have additional questions, please feel free to ask.
 

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MAY Seed Planting Guide for the US Posted on 26 Apr 07:29 , 1 comment

Before we get started with our MAY Planting Guide, we have a few specials to announce.
Genovese Basil and Sage will be on Sale thru May 10th

 

Mary's Heirloom Seeds
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April 25, 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. 
NEW ARRIVALS
 We've added a few more heirloom seeds for MAY!
 
 
 
MAY 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**




Arugula, Bush & Pole Beans, Lima Beans, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant (transplant), Endive, Gourds (Louffa),  Kale, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Bunching Onions, Bulbing Onions, Southern Peas, Peppers, Sweet Potato, Radish, Radicchio, 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, Gourd (louffa) 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, Carrots, Celery, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Endive, Kohlrabi, Lettuce, Melons, Mustard, OKRA, Peas, Peppers, Pumpkins, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallion, Sorrel, Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips 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, Cantaloupe, Carrots, Sweet Corn, Cucumber, 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*
 
Artichoke, Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Corn, Cucumber, Endive, Eggplant, Gourds (louffa), Leeks, Lettuce, Kale, Melons, Okra, Onions, Pak Choy, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips 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
 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Carrots, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Gourds (Louffa), Leeks, Lettuce, Kale, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips 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
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Artichoke,Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Endive, Gourds (louffa), Leeks, Lettuce, Kale, Kohlrabi, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips and Watermelon.
Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cinlantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
CONTINUE READING


Arugula, Beans, Beets, Carrots, Celery, Collards, Corn, Cucumber, Gourds (Louffa), Endive, Eggplant, Leeks, Lettuce, Kale, Kohlrabi, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips 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
 
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Corn, Cucumber, Eggplant, Endive, Gourds (Louffa), Leeks, Lettuce, Kale, Kohlrabi, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Radicchio, Rutabaga, Scallions, Sorrel, Spinach, Summer Squash, Swiss Chard, Tomatoes, Turnips and Watermelon.
Herbs: Anise, Basil, Borage, Calendula, Catnip, Chamomile, Caraway, Chives, Cinlantro, Comfrey, Dill, Echinacea, Lavender,  Lemon Bee Balm, Lemonbalm, Lemongrass, Mugwort, Oregano, Parsley, Sage, Tarragon, Toothache Plant, Thyme and Yarrow
Don't forget the Wildflowers!
Arugula, Beans, Beets, Broccoli, Cabbage, Carrots, Corn, Cucumber, Gourds (Louffa), Endive, Eggplant, Leeks, Lettuce, Kale, Kohlrabi, Melons, Mustard, Okra, Onions, Peas, Peppers, Radish, Scallions, Sorrel, 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
Don't forget the Wildflowers!

 ARIZONA  
 
 NEW MEXICO   
FLORIDA has been split in 3 regions 
 



If you have additional questions please feel free to ask. 

 

Happy Planting,

 

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