Sunday, February 20, 2011


The way I like to describe the weather over the last couple of weeks is "less consistently wintery." Sure, there's still snow on the ground and more on the way today--accompanied by freezing rain. Yay. But there have been some warm days recently that have done a good bit of melt damage to the accumulated snow. In fact, there are some bare places near the house where the drifts had nearly reached the windows. There aren't any crocus yet. Yes, I looked.

Spring is a countable number of days away and my intention to start some seeds for the garden ahead of time has got me thinking and planning what to do and when. Seed catalogs have been arriving fairly regularly. In the depths of winter I got a little crazy and ordered dozens of them. It's a little escape to page through each one as it arrives and dream about actually picking the luscious vegetables in the pictures. However, if I read the phrase "very unique" one more time I may flip out. Most of these catalogs are going to turn out to be just references, though. I've got sources.

First, across the street from my office is an extremely well-stocked garden center. It's got everything I need in the way of seeds and later it will have started plants should my own attempts to make little seedlings fail. And, second, one of my dear friends is a serious collector of seeds who shares them generously. Consequently between the ones I've purchased, saved myself and gotten from him, I have a list so extensive it will be a miracle if I can grow even half of it. And this isn't even including the tomatoes and peppers I'll be selecting later.

Alyssum , Carpet of Snow
Arugula, Apollo
Arugula, wild
Basil, Italian Genvese
Basil, Purple Petra
Bean, Bush, Baby Lima 'White Dixie Butter'
Bean, Bush, Pencil Pod
Bean, Bush, Red Calypso
Bean, Bush, Royal Burgundy
Bean, Bush, Tavera
Bean, Fava, Windsor
Bean, Lima, Henderson Bush
Bean, Pole, Trionfo Violetto
Bean, Soy, Green, Butterbean
Beet, Bull's Blood
Beet, Burpee's Golden
Beet, Burpee's Golden
Bok Choy, White Stem
Bok Choy, Tatsoi, Rosette
Bok Choy, Tatsoi, Rosette
Broccoli Raab,
Calendula, Mixture"
Calendula, Pacific Beauty Blend
Carrot, Rainbow
Carrot, Scarlet Nantes
Cowpea, Southern, California Blackeye #5
Cucumber, Armenian Burpless
Cucumber, Japanese Soyu Burpless
Cucumber, Lemon
Cucumber, Parade
Escarole, Broadleaf Batavian
Garlic, Bavarian Purple
Garlic, PVT
Garlic, Tai Lang
Garlic, Western Rose
Gourd, Autumn Wings
Kale, Dwarf Blue Curled Scotch
Kale, Chinese, Kailaan, White Flowered
Kohlrabi, Purple and White Vienna Blend
Lettuce, Butterhead, Marvel of Four Seasons
Lettuce, Butterhead, Tom Thumb
Lettuce, Leaf, Lolla Rossa
Lettuce, Leaf, Red Sails
Lettuce, Leaf, Tango
Marigold, Starfire Signet
Melon, Charentais
Mustard, Ruby Streaks
Nasturtium, Peach Melba
Nho Gai, Vietnamese Coriander
Oregano, True Greek
Parsley, Italian Dark Green Flat
Parsley, Rooted, Hamburg
Parsnip, All American
Pea, Snowbird
Radish, D'Avignon
Radish, Easter Egg
Radish, Helios
Radish, Winter, Chinese Rose
Seasoning Celery, Amsterdam
Silverbeet, Five Color
Spinach, Bloomsdale
Spinach, Bordeaux
Spinach, Olympia
Squash, Summer, Early Golden Crookneck
Strawberry, Alpin,
Strawberry, Alpine, Mignonette
Summer Savory,
Zinnia, Cut and Come Again