Vegetables are the mainstays of our garden. Leafy greens and root vegetables in spring give way to heat-loving tomatoes and peppers in the summer, followed by cabbage, squash, and more root vegetables in the fall.
Vegetable seedlings are $5-8.
Annual, 1-2’. 60 days. Well-drained soil and full sun. Dark-green, wavy round leaves with tender whitish-green stems. Plant every 12-18” in rows at least 18” apart. Collards can be continuously harvested spring thru fall, or new plants can be started in the fall for overwintering. Plants can be impacted by cabbage moths. Remove cabbageworms by hand or cover with a light fabric to prevent moths from laying eggs. Collards are delicious in stir fries, sautéed with garlic and olive oil, or simmered in a pot with bacon.
Lettuce, Merveille de Quatre Saisons
Annual, up to 1’. 60 days. The ‘Marvel of Four Seasons’ is a French variety of butterhead lettuce with beautiful red, bronze, and green leaves. Plant in full sun, or in a spot with some afternoon shade in the summer. Prefers well-drained, but well-watered soil. Harvest leaves individually or the whole head.
Annual, up to 1’. 65 days. Marcie’s favorite lettuce. Wonderfully tender, buttery-textured leaves with a crisp, sweet, bright green center. Tolerant of warmer temperatures. Plant in full sun, or in a spot with some afternoon shade in the summer. Prefers well-drained, but well-watered soil.
Annual, up to 1’ 55 days. A beautiful butterhead with bright green centers and gilded red outer leaves. Crisp and refreshing. Plant in full sun, or in a spot with some afternoon shade in the summer. Prefers well-drained, but well-watered soil.
Annual, up to 1’. 50 days. Deep red mini romaine, 6-8” tall. Crisp and beautiful. Plant in full sun, or in a spot with some afternoon shade in the summer. Prefers well-drained, but well-watered soil.
Annual, 2-3’. 55 days. Well drained soil and full sun. Plant 12-18” apart in rows 18-36” apart. Kale can be harvested continuously spring-fall, or new plants can be started in the fall for overwintering. Can be impacted by cabbage moths. Remove cabbageworms by hand or cover with a light fabric to prevent moths from laying eggs. Young leaves are delicious in salads with cherry tomatoes and lemon-garlic dressing. Kale can also be added to any stir-fry or stew, or simply sautéed with olive oil and garlic.
Annual, 2-3’. 55 days. Also called Dino, Tuscan, Black, or Flat-leaf kale. Well drained soil and full sun. Plant 12-18” apart in rows 18-36” apart. Kale can be harvested continuously spring-fall, or new plants can be started in the fall for overwintering. Can be impacted by cabbage moths. Remove cabbageworms by hand or cover with a light fabric to prevent moths from laying eggs. Flea beetles are also particularly attracted to this variety of kale.. perhaps because it is so tender. Delicious in kale salad. Remove the stems, chop finely, rinse, and massage with lemon juice, olive oil, garlic, and coarse salt.
Malabar spinach, Rubra
Annual, up to 5’ vining. 70 days. This heat-loving vine is a good substitute for spinach in the summer. Leaves have a flavor similar to spinach but are succulent, thicker and more akin to okra in texture. Wonderfully ornamental, can be trained to climb a fence or trellis. Produces small white button flowers and dark seeds. Full sun and well-drained soil.
Annual, up to 6”. 26 days. Lovely green spinach with oval, semi-wrinkled leaves. Harvest whole plants or select just the mature, outer leaves and allow the center leaves to continue to grow… and harvest more later! Plant 8” apart in rows 8-12” apart in well-drained soil, full to partial sun.
Swiss chard, Bright lights
Annual, 1-2’. 55 days. Well-drained soil and full sun. The most eye-catching of garden greens. Beautiful, wavy green leaves with stems of bright orange, yellow, red, and white. The same species as beets, these are grown for their prolific and versatile greens. Chard can be harvested spring thru fall, or new plants can be started in the fall for overwintering. If allowed to overwinter plants will flower and go to seed that spring. Excellent in omelets, sautéed with garlic, hot pepper, and toasted sesame seed oil, or added to a skillet of chickpeas.
Cucumbers, Squash, & onions
Annual, up to 5’ vining. 52 days. Well-drained soil and full sun. Use care when planting as seedlings can resent having their roots disturbed. Plant 12” apart along a fence or between 4’-tall garden stakes and trellis for easier harvest. Will easily climb if encouraged. Regular watering will ensure consistently-sized fruits. Cucumbers are fast growers. Once the first fruits appear, check plants every other day. Must be pollinated by bees to fruit.
Green onions, White Spear
Annual, up to 1’. 65 days. Classic scallions with white base and long blue-green leaves. Harvest the whole bunch or pull stalks as you need them. Plant in well-drained soil with full sun. Space clumps 6” apart in rows 4-6” apart. Keep well-weeded as onions dislike competition.
Squash, Patty Pan
Annual, up to 4’ spreading. 50 days. Abundant producer of scalloped spaceship-shaped squash. Shiny yellow with light green bottom. Excellent stuffed and roasted. Space plants 18-24” apart in rows 4-6’ apart. Cover with lightweight fabric until onset of flowering to keep plants warm and protect from insect pests.
Watermelon, Sugar Baby
Annual, spreading 6-8’. 76 days. Perfect family-sized melons with dark green rinds and bright red flesh. Sweet and juicy, 6-8” in diameter. Watermelons enjoy warm conditions, consistent watering, and plenty of space to spread. Fruits are ready to harvest when the fruit stem begins to dry/brown, the fruit has a “yellow belly” where it has been sitting on the ground, and it makes a hollow “thunk” when tapped. Plant in mounds 2-3’ apart in rows that are 6-8’ apart.
Eggplant & peppers
Eggplant and peppers both enjoy well-drained soil and full sun. Space plants 18” apart in rows 30-36” apart. Cover with a light blanket to protect from cool nights that can slow growth in the spring. Like other solanaceous (nightshade) crops, be careful not to over-fertilize. Too much nitrogen can promote leaf growth rather than fruiting. Fruits can be hard to pull from the plant without snapping a branch, especially for eggplant—use a knife or scissors to harvest. Plants may also benefit from some support or trellising when branches are laden with fruit.
Annual, 3-4’. 90 days. Plump, teardrop-shaped fruit that are deep purple to black with very sweet, tender flesh.
Eggplant, Listada de Gandia
Annual, 3-4’. 90 days. Lovely 7” purple and white striped fruits. Heirloom from Spain.
Egglant, NY Improved
Annual, 3-4’. 75 days. Dark purple fruits on compact, productive plants. Teardrop-shaped with very smooth skin.
Pepper, Ashe County Pimento
Annual, up to 4’. 60 days. A sweet heirloom pepper that hails from the Smoky Mountains of Ashe Co., NC. Thick-walled. You can eat them raw, roast them whole, or add them to grated cheddar and mayonnaise with a slab of sourdough bread to make your own pimento cheese sandwich.
Pepper, Canary Bell
Annual, up to 4’. 80 days. Not your average bird. These bells are bright yellow, thick-fleshed, and perfect for any purpose.
Annual, up to 4’. 80 days. Curvy, twisty, crazy sweet peppers. Start yellow and ripen to a bright red. Slender, 10” fruits perfect for frying or throwing on a pizza.
Pepper, Jimmy Nardello
Annual, up to 4’. 75 days. Long, deep red slightly wrinkled frying peppers. So good and so beautiful they’ve earned a place on the Slow Food Ark of Taste. They are an heirloom from Italy.
Annual, up to 4’. 70 days. Crunchy little red snack peppers. So sweet and satisfying. They are the perfect snack after a long day—or a short day. Refreshing and versatile, you can eat them raw or cooked.
Annual, up to 4’. 70 days. Similar to Lipstick peppers but in shades of yellow, orange, and red. Perfect for packing in a lunchbox.
Annual, up to 4’. 80 days. Japanese frying pepper. It’s impossible to eat just one. And good thing—the plants are prolific! Wrinkly green 4” long fruits can be tossed in olive oil and thrown on a hot skillet with some coarse salt. Cook until they’re brown and blistered and eat by the bowlful.
Pepper, Sweet banana
Annual, up to 4’. 75 days. Long, conical fruits. Start light green and ripen to yellow, orange, then red, though they can be eaten at any stage. Mild, tangy, sweet, these ‘nanners lack the heat.
Pepper, Violet Sparkle
Annual, up to 4’. 75 days. The name says it all, these little gems sparkle. Short pointy purple and yellow streaked fruits have thick-walled flesh and are sweet and crunchy.
Pepper (hot), Aji Chinchi Amarillo
Annual, up to 4’ 60 days. These yellow peps are a key ingredient in Peruvian (fresh) and Bolivian (dried) cuisine. Fruity with medium heat, these make any batch of beans stand out. This strain is offered by Southern Exposure Seed Exchange and has slightly smaller fruits than the standard, but they also begin producing earlier in the season.
Pepper (hot), Aji Dulce
Annual, up to 5’. 111 days. Venezuelan heirloom that has the fruity flavor of a habanero, but only the threat of heat. The wrinkly, thin-walled little fruits even look like habaneros but ripen to a deep red. Very aromatic and flavorful.
Pepper (hot), Brazilian Starfish
Annual, up to 4’. 85 days. These are new to us but we can’t wait to try them! The small, squat red fruits look like miniature spaceships from the side and starfish from above. Mild heat and fruity flavor.
Pepper (hot), Hot Wax
Annual, up to 4’. 65 days. Long yellow peppers with medium heat. They are prolific and sooo delicious pickled or fermented and added to sandwiches.
Pepper (hot), Jalapeno
Annual, up to 4’. 65 days. The gateway pepper. The thick-fleshed peppers bring lots of flavor and a little bit of heat to your cooking. 2500-8000 Scoville units (compared to habanero’s 100,000-350,000 Scoville units!).
Pepper (hot), Locoto
Annual, up to 4’. 85 days. Sweet, juicy, hot little red peppers common in South America. Family name pubescans refers to the fine short hair on the leaves and stems of the plant. The flowers are bluish-purple and the seeds are black.
Pepper (hot), Orange Cobra
Annual, up to 4’. 85 days. A gift to us from the Hippy Seed Company in Australia. Slightly wrinkly orange fruits with thin skin pack a bit of heat and thrive in cool climates.
Pepper (hot), Poblano
Annual, up to 4’. 65 days. The well-deserved standard for chile rellenos and delicious bean tacos. Dark green, blocky shoulders with a tapered end, 5” long fruits with very mild heat and rich pepper flavor.
Pepper (hot), Sugar Rush Peach
Annual, up to 4’. 65 days. Crinkly, curvy, orangey-peach colored fruits. Sweet tropical flavor with smokey heat. Prolific. Baker Creek says they are the most fun pepper to eat.
Tomatoes love full sun and well-drained soil. Tomatoes can grow roots from their central stem so many people bury the plant up to the first set of leaves (3-8” deep) to grow sturdier, well-rooted plants. If you would like to encourage larger fruits, pinch back all of the branches (leave the leaves!) up to the first flowering stem. Space plants 1-2’ apart in rows that are 2-3’ apart. Avoid adding too much nitrogen to the soil as this promotes leaf growth rather than fruit production. Trellising or tomato cages will prevent fruit-laden branches from breaking and will make harvesting easier.
Tomato, Black Krim
Annual, up to 5’. 85 days. A dusky purple heirloom from the Black Sea in Russia. So delicious and complex are these beautiful slicers. Smoky flavor to match their smoky skins.
Tomato, Striped German
Annual, up to 5’. 85 days. A lovely red and yellow ribbed fruit with a beautiful marbled interior. Fruity and smooth textured.
Tomato, German Johnson
Annual, up to 5’. 85 days. A beautiful southeastern heirloom with slight ribbing and pink skin. Juicy, meaty, and flavorful, perfect for slicing or sandwiches.
Cherry tomato, Black Cherry
Annual, up to 5’. 70 days. Tracey’s favorite cherry tomato. Large, round cherry tomatoes with dark purple-green skin. Fruits are up to 1” diameter and have a complex flavor, much more like a full-size slicing tomato. Very prolific and produces longer into the season than other varieties. Wonderful roasted or added to salsa.
Cherry tomato, Sungold
Annual, up to 5’. 65 days. THE go-to cherry tomato. Small, bright orange fruits are sweet and juicy. They are also marvelous cut in half, tossed in olive oil, and roasted in the oven for a quick pasta sauce.