Finding joy in discovering new seed varieties -Spring 2020

Few things can fuel a gardener’s excitement like a seed catalog in the early spring. The glossy pages filled with pictures of perfect produce can induce a type of hypnosis. Speaking from personal experience, it’s easy to shop for seeds like a kid in a candy shop. The danger in this comes later. July hits and you’re trying to manage 30 different crops simultaneously. That being said, seed catalogs are a great way to discover new varieties and crops to grow. They just require a degree of self-restraint.

Now, more so than ever, there are many great places to buy seeds. All across America, we are experiencing a small-farm renaissance. Small market farms are popping up in every region of the country, and as a result, more small seed companies are becoming successful supplying them. This is great news for the home gardener. We now have an incredible variety of heirloom and artisanal varieties at our fingertips, bred specifically for certain regions of the country.

As a grower, I take a conservative stance when it comes to trying new things. I try to limit myself to no more than 20 percent new varieties in any given year. This helps to keep my farm producing predictably and reliably, while also giving me a nudge to try new things and keeps evolving my practices. After studying all of my seed catalogs, here is a list of new vegetable varieties for 2020 that have caught my eye and have my consideration for this season.

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