Fruit and Vegetables from the Garden, Kent
I know there is still snow on the ground, but it is time to start thinking about our gardens. Gardens play a very important part of our food storage plan and you need to plan ahead to think about your needs for the upcoming season. You need to think about your consumption of vegetables and apply that to your garden planning. For example if you only ate 1 quart of green beans as part of your dinner plans 3 times per week that means you would have to can 156 quarts of green beans to sustain you for the next year. Think about your tomatoes- you have canned tomatoes, salsa, tomato sauce, tomato juice etc. We eat lots of tomatoes so we always plant a lot of tomato plants. It really pays to sit down and do a little planning ahead before you even think about ordering seeds. It is a lot of upkeep to raise such a large garden but so worth the efforts. There is a comforting feeling knowing that you have food to sustain you and your family during an emergency or during hard times financially. We have 5 in our family- me, my husband and 3 boys - 2 of which are teenagers, and they can eat!!
Where to buy your seed? Remember the words Heirloom and Open Pollinated or NON-Hybrid Seeds. These seeds are not genetically modified and you can save your seed from your vegetables to plant again the next year. If you have never saved your seeds before you can read Saving Seeds Successfully for more information. Here and here are 2 wonderful articles explaining Non hybrid, open pollinated, and heirloom seeds.
A few stores carry open pollinated or heirloom seeds- but not very many. You will most likely find hybrid seeds- which means that they have been treated so you can not save your seeds to plant again- you will have to buy new seeds again every year.
You will need to start some of your seeds indoors to get a head start on the growing season. Here in Pocahontas County we have frost up until at least late May. So only the early "cold season" crops such as onions, radishes, spinach, peas are put out before Memorial Day.
Starting seeds indoors is a lot of fun and it is really easy - if you have never started seeds indoors and would like to try here is an article you can read How to Successfully Start Plants from Seed
Here are some seed companies that sell Open Pollinated, Heirloom, and Non- Hybrid seeds: