As I sit here typing this, outside, we are having the first snow of the season. The cold weather has been a little later than normal, and a lot like getting my website updated with all the new seed varieties for the coming season, 2017. I grew out a large number of new crops as trials this season, like lentils and a number of heritage and ancient wheat varieties. They did so well that I have enough seed to offer some to interested customers. A number of these new crops are not “tried and true” cultivars for my region, here in the Midwest, but I believe they are important enough to make available. I have added specific information to each crop’s corresponding page, listing them as “for preservation purposes”.
I have also added a number of new crops that are indigenous to the north, like Potawatomi Pole Beans and Potawatomi Rabbit Beans, as well as Mskigwat Flint Corn and Darwin John Flint Corn. These are already well acclimated to our growing conditions here in Northern Indiana. All are heirloom varieties from historical Native American farmers here in the upper Midwest and New England.
I have also added 6 new varieties of rice from Japan, China and Italy. The two cultivars from Italy, Loto and Vialone, are both “risotto type” rice. All six of these performed superbly. I also have a rice variety, Hayayuki, suited for growing in zone 4!
These are just a few of the new offerings for this season, as well the best of the previous seasons, like Kwintus Beans and Styrian Pumpkins, to name just a few. It has been a real stretch on my time and sanity to add this much new material, but I believe it was well worth it. All of this years crops produced great under difficult weather conditions. We had a 2 month drought in the spring, followed by one of the wettest summers on record. Overall, it is a real testament to the resilience of these heirloom and heritage, open-pollinated crops!