A few days ago a rather large parsnip was discovered while weeding an earlier root garden. Certainly got me excited about growing more parsnips. The parsnip tasted very fresh and good.


 Update: March 11 2014: Parsnips were sown.

Parsnip Update

Update: April 9 2014: The parsnips and salsify each got their own raised bed (3′ x 3′ x 2.5′). So far no signs of any action from either. The chickens have been active in the garden beds – will have to reduce chicken access. It also could be that the seed parsnip seed stock is old – according to Benedict Vanheems (Perfect Parsnips Every Time) you will have better results by using fresh seeds and by sowing when the soil is 50-54°F – she also suggests testing your soil thermometer with my bear behind (is that like backyard earthing?).



Updated March 11 2014: The aim this year is to include an early varitiy for each vegetable (when possible). The 4 varities of beets sown today include an early harvest, to med season harvests, and a summer harvest. The latter harvest is the 20 lb. Mammoth Red Mangel, not quite sure how many we sowed; I’d be happy if we harvest a few.

  • Beet – Lutz salad leaf (3-4 lb.)
  • Beet – Manger yellow cylindrical (3-4 lb.)
  • Beet – Mammoth Red Mangel (20 lb.)
  • Beet – Tall top early wonder (60 harvest)

Updated April 9 2014: Slow germination from the beets. The large Mammoth Red Mangel and Manger Yellow Cylindrical germinate out of the ground big. Each of the first leaves are over an inch in length.

Mammoth Red Mangel Beet - Seeding

Seed Objective

This year we set the objective to record the success of our seeds. With the success measured by the food grown.

Last year, there were many vegetable plants that did not come to fruit. From what I can recall, germination rates were low –  many of the heirloom and organic seeds preforming poorly. While the conventional (non-gmo) seeds produced the most harvest.

Our objective is to remain focused on working with heirloom varieties. Discovering new and interesting foods that are enjoyed for freshness and flavor, rather than shelve life and the ability to travel. When you grow your own food it is not enough to grow what the store have to offer. Your garden should produce the vegetables that the store can not offer. Many stores now provide the basic fresh vegetables from a  local organic source – while most of your local heirloom are not bought to market.

The time spent last year alphabetizing and cataloging the seed bank has greatly streamlined the planting process. While having an inventory has identified  what seed stocks are low and the stock surplus.

  • Seed varieties = 204
  • Varieties of seeds with less than 10 seeds = 21
  • Varieties of seeds with less than 25 seeds = 32
  • Varieties of seeds with more than 100 seeds = 74
  • Varieties of seeds with more than 300 seeds = 99