Victoria Seedy Saturday

…. Here I come!

Just a quick post today to say that my whole day will be spent at Seedy Saturday (10-4pm at the Victoria Conference Centre). If you’re in the CRD, be sure to come. There’s of course the seed exchange, a bunch of talks, and a whack of vendors selling seeds and local foods. Seedy Saturday is where I get most of the acquisitions for the seed bank each year, so it’s always something I highly anticipate. Not to mention I’ll be volunteering with a great bunch of people, so it’s sure to be a blast.

In seed bank news: the grow out list is almost complete and will go up either tonight or tomorrow afternoon. Same with the seeds for distribution this year. I know a bunch of you have been asking for both, so stay tuned! I will be sending a newsletter out when that goes live (sign up for the newsletter is at the top of the left-hand column).

Have a good day faithful blog readers – I know I will today.

Spring Has Sprung

Oh, there have been lots of updates around the old site and with the seed bank lately! With spring here on Vancouver Island I’ve been getting my ducks all in a row for the upcoming season, and am very excited with how it’s shaping up already.

Last year with the wrath of La Nina, we were still experiencing snow, and the cold, wet weather pushed through to the end of May. It was a bad season, but this year is shaping up to be much better already (despite threats of another La Nina, which didn’t seem to affect us too much).

The annual seed bank fundraiser is now on!

I want to take a minute to thank everybody who’s already purchased seed through the shop. There are more seeds available, and a great selection of my favourites. The seed bank is almost completely run out of my pocket as a labour of love, so the funds raised from this annual sale go a long way to helping the seed bank out through the year. If you’re looking at purchasing some tomato seeds, take a look at what I have available, which include many rare varieties, several of which aren’t available through any commercial source.

As usual, the seed for distribution page is currently on hiatus until the fundraiser is over (generally around mid to late May).

2012 Grow List is available!

Picking which varieties to grow every year is always one of my favourite things to do, and involves many hours of humming and hawing over which seeds to plant. This year I’m pushing 40 different tomato varietiesagain, and am really excited with some of them! If you’re interested to see what’s in store, go here to take a look at the list. I’ll actually be expanding the garden again this year, so that list is due to increase as I take account of the new space.

Current holdings now available

Click here to view the most updated list of what is in the bank. Getting close to the 200 mark!

2012 Growers

I will be needing growers again (as usual) for the seed bank. There are a lot of varieties that require a big increase in quantity for proper storage. If you are interested, please send me an email via this form with your interest, and I’ll get back to you ASAP. I’m still catching up after some computer issues – if you’ve sent me a message the last four weeks and you haven’t heard back, please send me another one!

Website Maintenance

This is not nearly as interesting, but I know there are some broken images/links around the site and I’m working on getting those all fixed up. I moved servers a few weeks ago and am still playing catch up. Please bear with me!

Until next time!

Happy New Year

Happy new year everybody!

You may have noticed a few strange things occurring here the past few days. I’ve actually been changing servers for this website, and my limited database knowledge provided me with a few hiccups, shall we say. But after much swearing and shaking my fist at the computer, I finally figured it out and was able to get everything up and running.

Thanks for hanging in there, and stay tuned! The list of what will be available for distribution, what varieties will need growers, and what has all been added to the bank these past few months is coming within the next few weeks.

I’ll also be continuing to migrate over some posts from my other garden blog on the growth of some plants over the previous years.

Once again, I hope everybody had a fantastic New Year’s, and it was well spent in the company of good friends, good food, and good drink (if you’re so inclined).

New Posts A-Comin’

In the next few days/weeks you’ll notice an increase of posting. I’m going to be migrating over some posts from what used to be my garden blog over at populuxe.ca. I’ve decided they just make more sense being over here, as this has become the place where I talk about the plants I grow now.

Growth Notes: August 1st, 2011

I’m quite pleased with how the garden is shaping up this year. Despite the fact it was a barren wasteland of morning glory, ivy, oregon grape, and other sundry weeds and annoyances when we first moved in. The weather has been cool here, and rainy, and to my shock and awe, plants have not succumbed to blight or any other various diseases, *knocks on wood*. There’s a bit of a problem with powdery mildew on some of the bee balm and columbine, but even the squash only have minimal tellings of it. Things are going pretty damned well, and I thank the excellent natural soil of the area, and a bit of hard work to keep it all going.

Now, for a few updates!

Tomato 'AP2'

  • Tomato ‘AP2’ – This plant is a sprawler, sending large, huge vines everywhere. Next year I’m going to make a point of caging this one rather than trying to stake it. Fruit is currently taking on a rather heavily pleated shape (love it!), so a grow-out next year with the actual ‘Americke Pyramidni’ will let me know if that fruit is heavily pleated as well (according to PGRC fruit shape is “oblate” and fruit smoothness is “rough”). Tons of flowers, some blossom drop but this might be more due to the weather than the actual tendencies of the plant (as several other varieties are also dropping buds). Can’t wait to see how these fruit mature.
  • Pole Beans 'Irish Conners'

  • Pole Beans ‘Irish Conners’ – doing a lot better here than when I tried to grow them in Nelson. Vines are about 6ft tall currently, immature pods are flattish and medium sized and taste very sweet. Flowers are white, with 4 flowers per shoot. Most set with no problem, but there are a few dropping. Once again, might be due more to the weather than actual growth.
  • Pole Beans 'Oma's'

  • Pole Beans ‘Oma’s’ – Very strong grower, vines are currently between 7-8ft and seem to grow several inches over night! White flowers, immature pods are rounder and fatter than Irish Conners, and currently seem to grow longer.
  • Beans - Poltschka X (Unknown)

  • Beans ‘Poltschka X’ – Very, very slow growing (once again, possibly due to weather, although all the other beans have outpaced these). While the other beans started flowering weeks ago, I just saw the first blooms open up on these yesterday. Flowers are white.
  • All the tomatoes have had at least some flowers isolated now, and are growing fruit. I had some problems with a few, most notably ‘Coracao di Boi’ and ‘Antonovka’ with blossom drop. Once again, hard to tell if this is weather related or not, but since it’s been warming up and days haven’t been so cool, both are setting fruit much more easily.

    Site update!
    I thought it was high-time to start producing a quarterly newsletter. In it we’ll have updates on the bank, new additions, and special projects and plans. There’ll also be things that are announced there first (like looking for growers for instance!), as well as highlights and features on varieties in the bank. I’m even hoping to feature one family heirloom per newsletter with stories, historical info, growth info, etc. Imagine it like a mini magazine that finds its way to your inbox!

    Of course all information will be kept strictly private, I’m not even using a third-party service to keep the email addresses, they’ll be stored with me, and I will never release them.

    The first issue will be in October of this year – and yes I would love to feature your family heirloom! If you have one, please use the contact link located in the side bar to get a hold of me.

    Want to sign up? Here’s the form (all fields required):

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    I’m excited about the first issue, which is already being worked on as I type this.

    Stay tuned for more growth notes from the gardens coming this week.