Monday, February 3, 2014

Feeding our Families

It is seed ordering time. 
 I vary what I order from year to year and have yet to keep a garden journal so I often forget from year to year.  Some years I am more experimental than others and there have been a year when I didn't even get a seed order off (money was probably in short supply) and ended up buying High Mowing Seeds from our local organic farm.

This year I am planning and I have my seed order ready to mail.  I am choosing seeds from Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds and probably just for ease of ordering all in one place.  I also like to order from Fedco and High Mowing. 

            Baker Creek seeds are all  non-hybrid and non-GMO, non-treated and non-patented.

We eat only our own produce from June - November.  I would like to expand this over time but we do have some limitations that include very little tillable land and the time constraints of running our business and large family.   However, it is very important to me to nurture our soil with one shovel full of our own compost at a time that will then support the plants that will feed our family even for just those five months.  

I am in awe every spring as the seeds sprout and then the garden slowly gets crowded (with weeds too!), and I am filled with joy when I can go out in the garden in the evenings and pick what will become our dinner.   It is  a great lesson for the children to feel connected to the rhythm of the seasons and to their food and to also see what can happen with consistent work and effort.  Gardening really doesn't take as much time as one might think.   For me, 20 minutes here and 20 minutes there seems to work.  

So this year my seed order includes:
Bush Beans - Beiree De Rocquencourt  (wax) and Cantare (green)
Beets - Chioggia and Golden
Carrots - Chantenay Red Core
Corn - Dakota Black Popcorn, Strawberry Popcorn (for fun - decoration and popcorn)
I will buy sweet corn from High Mowing
Cucumber - Boston Pickling
Wheat, Emmer (for a fun lesson with the children)
Lettuce - Rocky Top Lettuce Salad, Forellenschluss and Lolla Rossa
Kale - Blue Curled Scotch
Melon - Minnosota Midget
Parsnip - Half Long Guernsey
Summer Squash - Zucchini Black Beauty, Zucchini, Golden
Winter Squash - Butternut-Waltham and Connecticut Field Pumpkins
Swiss Chard - Bionda Di Lyon
Turnips - Boule d'Or
I will buy tomatoes and peppers from our local farm because we have such a short growing season and they usually even already have flowers on them when I buy them the end of May.  

I invite you to visit the other blogs sharing their ideas on Feeding Our Families:


  1. Hello Tonya...I also buy my seeds from Heirloom selections, and I have been trying to save more seeds over the years to cut down on spending so much at this time of certainly adds up, doesn't it? Here in Canada, we have different seed companies to choose from, and I usually rely on a few of my favourites every year. I look forward to seeing your garden grow from afar.
    xo Jules

  2. I love this time of year! I'm adding herbs to my purchase this much of our yard is already garden...we're slowly losing it all to gardening! heh. I know what you mean about short growing periods. It's frustrating. I planted sweet potatoes last year and And then, I had the brilliant idea to grown a sweet leaf plant. A--ahem--tropical plant. It's currently still alive in my house, but I wouldn't exactly use the word "thriving" to describe it. I had high hopes, what can I say? :) At any rate, good luck with your gardening this year. I think I'm going to throw some apple trees into the mix this year, too, and see if I can get some apples in a few years. (If the deer don't get there first.)

  3. Tonya, ordering seeds has been on my mind lately too- and I am so anxious to get planting again! so much fun to see what you're ordering. :)

  4. This is the best time of year! I am putting together my seed order also. slowly but surely :) m.

  5. My kids LOVE when the garden is in full swing. So often they will just go out to the garden to eat lunch. They pick and devour things that they normally wouldn't in the off-season, but I guess that makes sense. It's all the more reason to learn to grow all four seasons!


  6. Seed ordering- so exciting! It is fun to see what you will be growing. It is always hard to believe that it might be time to order seeds when the temperature is so cold and the garden is buried under snow!

  7. My Good Seeds catalog just arrived yesterday. Since I now live in a duplex with no yard, I won't be ordering - BUT I will give my daughter and her family a "gift" of $25 toward their seed ordering. A Spring-Is-Coming gift.

  8. How wonderful that your family can produce so much of what you eat! I have never heard of Baker Creek, but look forward to checking out their seeds. Thanks!

  9. Hi Tonya,
    I just ordered my seeds yesterday. I use The Cottage Gardener, which is local for me, in Southern Ontario, and all heirloom seeds. I am going to be trying Dakota Black Popcorn too this year - I look forward to seeing how it works. I wanted to try the Strawberry popcorn too, but my husband thought it was too weird. :)