Thank you so much to all who participated! Together we sowed and distributed several hundred seed pots for planting in gardens across New York City. Here are some photos of our lovely afternoon, thanks to Andrea Wenglowskyj. For all those who carried seeds away, information about care of each plant and seed saving follows. All seeds were purchased from Seed Savers Exchange, Southern Exposure Seed Exchange, Marianna's Heirloom Seeds and Native Seeds, photography and written content are also courtesy of these organizations and Slow Food.

Plant care information and instructions

Amish Deer Tongue Lettuce
Amish variety valued for its ruggedness and heavy production. Thick solid compact plant. Sharply triangular green leaves with straight edges. Unique growth habit. Thin midrib, good texture. Pleasantly sharp flavor. Looseleaf, 45-55 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

   

Amish Paste Tomato
Amish heirloom discovered in Wisconsin. Produces 6-8 oz. red fruits that are oxheart to almost teardrop-shaped. Meaty fruits are juicy and have really outstanding flavor. Good for sauce or fresh eating. Indeterminate, 85 days from transplant.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Austin's Red Pear Tomato
A real standout among all of Seed Saver’s red pears. Extra large 2" red tomatoes with excellent flavor. Very productive; occasionally a plant with yellow fruit appears. Indeterminate, 80 days from transplant. CERTIFIED ORGANIC

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Beaver Dam Pepper
Hungarian heirloom brought to Beaver Dam, Wisconsin in 1929 by the Joe Hussli family. Florence Hussli recommends adding sliced raw rings to a cheese and bologna sandwich or using for stuffed peppers. Crunchy fruits are mildly hot when seeded. Excellent flavor, ripens from lime-green to red. Great for making fresh batches of salsa. 80 days from transplant. Heat Scale: Sweet...0-1-2-3-4-5...Hot. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 8 weeks before transplanting. Sow seeds 1/4" deep. Keep soil moist and near 80 degrees F using bottom heat. Peppers may take two weeks to germinate. Transplant outdoors when daytime soil temperatures are near 80 degrees F and nighttime temperatures are above 50 degrees F.

Seed Saving Instructions
Peppers will cross-pollinate, so seperate by at least 500' or plant in insect-proof cages covered with window screen. Select peppers that are ripe, fully colored and show no signs of disease to save for seed. Remove seeds off core and place on a paper plate to dry.

   

Bee Balm or Lemon Mint
Used by Native Americans to brew a tea; replaced black tea during the Boston Tea Party. Citrus-flavored leaves can be minced and added to fruit and jellies. Beautiful purplish bracts, 24-30" tall, aromatic and colorful in fall. Excellent bee forage plant. Hardy perennial in zones 5-9.

Planting Instructions
Start seeds indoors 8-10 weeks before planting outdoors. Plant seeds on the surface of the soil. Seeds germinate in 10-20 days. Transplant the seedlings in early spring when a light frost is still possible. Beebalm prefers partial shade and average soil. Hardy perennial.

   

Black Krim Tomato
Named for the Crimean peninsula in the Black Sea. Slightly flattened 4-5" globes with dark greenish-black shoulders, turns almost black with enough heat and sun. Excellent full flavor. Indeterminate, 69-90 days from transplant.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Boston Marrow Squash
Originates from J. M. Ives of Salem, Massachusetts who received seeds from a friend in 1831. Thought to be of Native American origin, but not documented. Striking reddish orange skin, average fruits weigh 10-20 pounds. Excellent eating qualities, fine grained, sweet flesh. Almost two centuries of history! 90- 110 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors after danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills placed 6' apart each way. Pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Squash within the sames species will cross-pollinate, so isolate species by 1/4 mile. Seeds should be taken from fruits that have gone past maturity by 3 weeks. Remove seeds, wash and let dry.

   

Chapalote Corn
odern representatives of the Chapalote corn land race are the closest remnants we have of the earliest maize to be carried up from Central America into North America. In other words, the earliest archaeological evidence of corn found in Bat Cave and other rock shelters in New Mexico is classified as Chapalote or preChapalote, the latter smaller, but otherwise identical flinty popcorn. Cultivation of this ancient maize was abandoned in the Southwest some time after Spanish colonization, and Chapalote persisted as a living legacy only in the Mexican states of Chihuahua, Sonora, and Sinaloa..

Planting Instructions
In early spring just before last frost, or with summer rains in the low desert, plant seeds 1" deep in rows, clumps, or basins. If saving seeds, a minimum of 100 plants is desirable to maintain genetic diversity. Corn needs rich soil and moisture to produce a crop. Drought stress, high winds, heat and low humidity can all reduce polination.

   

Charantais Melon
Considered by many to be the most divine and flavorful melons in the world. Smooth round melons mature to a creamy grayish-yellow with green stripes. Sweet, juicy, salmon flesh. Typically the size of a grapefruit and weighs about 2 pounds, perfect for two people. Ripe melons have a heavenly fragrance. 75-90 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Chervena Chushka Pepper
The best performing pepper during the record-setting cold and wet summer of 2004 at Heritage Farm. Bulgarian heirloom, traditionally used for roasting but also a great sweet pepper. Flesh is bright-red and very sweet, almost candy-like. Tapered fruits that are 2" at the shoulder by 6" long, ripens from green to brown to bright red. 85 days from transplant. Heat Scale: Sweet...0-1-2-3-4-5...Hot. CERTIFIED ORGANIC

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 8 weeks before transplanting. Sow seeds 1/4" deep. Keep soil moist and near 80 degrees F using bottom heat. Peppers may take two weeks to germinate. Transplant outdoors when daytime soil temperatures are near 80 degrees F and nighttime temperatures are above 50 degrees F.

Seed Saving Instructions
Peppers will cross-pollinate, so seperate by at least 500' or plant in insect-proof cages covered with window screen. Select peppers that are ripe, fully colored and show no signs of disease to save for seed. Remove seeds off core and place on a paper plate to dry.

   

Chives
Great ornamental herb for fresh eating or cooking, excess freezes well. Dead-head spent flowers for an extended blooming period. Perennial in zones 3-9. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 4-6 weeks before transplanting. Sow seeds in flats 1/4" deep and spaced 1" in all directions. Transplant as soon as the soil can be worked in the spring. Chives are also easy to direct seed. Established plants can easily be divided in both the spring and fall..

Seed Saving Instructions
Chives are a perrennial producing seed each season. Chives will not cross with any other Allium. The purple blooms are insect pollinated and then go on to form seed heads. When the heads start to dry, cut off, dry further, and thresh.

   

Cilantro
No Mexican meal is complete without fresh cilantro. The fresh leaves are called Cilantro and the seeds are used as a spice called Coriander. We like to make successive sowings to ensure a continuous supply all spring, summer and fall. This slow-bolting strain is usable for a very long period and holds very well without going to seed. 50-55 days to first leaf harvest, 90-120 days for seed. Annual.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/2" deep after the last frost. Space plants 8-10" in all directions. Seeds germinate in 10 days. Prefres full sun or partial shade and rich well-drained soil. Cilantro has a tendency to self-seed.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cilantro, will cross-pollinate with other varities of cilantro so varieties must be separated by 1/2 mile while flowering. Seeds can be harvested when they are dry on the plant.

   

Collective Farm Woman Melon
First offered to American gardeners by SSE in 1993. An old Ukrainian variety, very popular on the island of Krim in the Black Sea. Smooth round 7-10" melons are ready to harvest when the skin turns yellowish-orange. Yellowish-white flesh is extremely sweet and fragrant. Early, ripens in central Russia and can even be grown in Moscow. 80-85 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Crane Melon
Introduced in the 1920s by Oliver Crane whose family farmed for six generations near Santa Rosa, California. Crenshaw-type, teardrop-shaped, 3-5 pounds. Unusual dark green freckles dot the lighter green skin. Ready for picking when the freckles turn orange. Light-orange flesh, great sweet flavor. 75-85 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Delice De Table Melon
French heirloom listed by Vilmorin in 1885. Translates to "Delight of the Table." Ribbed fruits have sweet orange flesh, weigh about one pound. Very hard-to-find, almost extinct. 85-90 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Early Fortune Cucumber
Introduced in 1910 by the Jerome B. Rice Seed Company of Cambridge, New York, who described it as "the earliest and best white spine cucumber ever offered." Selected by George Starr at Royal Oak, Michigan from a single plant found in a crop of Davis Perfect (now extinct). Fruits are 7-8" long by 2" in diameter. 55-60 days.

Planting Instructions+
Sow 6-8 seeds outdoors 1" in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way a week after the last frost when soil is warm. Pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings. Can be started indoors in pots or flats 3-4 weeks before the last frost for an earlier harvest

Seed Saving Instructions
Cucumber will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other cucumbers. Fruits for seed should ripen past edible stage and begin to soften and turn yellow. Cut lengthwise, scoop out seeds, wash clean and dry. Seeds are dry when they break instead of bending.

   

Emerald Gem Melon
Introduced by W. Atlee Burpee in 1886 from seed sent by William Voorhees of Benzie County, Michigan. The most popular melon of that period, hailed as "altogether unapproached in delicious flavor and luscious beyond description." Pale-orange rich juicy flesh is sweet and somewhat spicy in flavor. Very heavy producer, compact plants. Fruits weigh 2-3 pounds. 70-90 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Fin De Bagnol Bean
Old gourmet variety of French string bean, delicious round slender pods. Best when picked every 2 or 3 days when very young. Productive in cool soils. Attractive as tiny gourmet green beans. Bush plants, 49-57 days. Average Seeds per Pound = 1,400.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors after danger of frost has passed and the soil and air temperatures warm. Plant seeds 1" deep and 2" apart in rows 24-36" apart

Seed Saving Instructions
Bean flowers are self-pollinating and almost never cross-pollinate. To ensure absolute purity, seperate by the length of th garden from other beans. It is always best to save seed from plants that ripen first and are free from disease. Harvest seed pods when completely dry, crush in a cloth or burlap sack and winnow the seeds from the chaff.

   

Fish Pepper
Pre-1870s African-American heirloom. Beautiful green and white variegated foliage on 18-24" plants. Pendant fruits 2-3" long, ripen from cream with green stripes to orange with brown stripes to all red. Traditionally used in oyster and crab houses around the Chesapeake Bay. Perfect for salsa. 80 days from transplant. Heat Scale: Sweet...0-1-2-3-4-5...Hot.

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 8 weeks before transplanting. Sow seeds 1/4" deep. Keep soil moist and near 80 degrees F using bottom heat. Peppers may take two weeks to germinate. Transplant outdoors when daytime soil temperatures are near 80 degrees F and nighttime temperatures are above 50 degrees F.

Seed Saving Instructions
Peppers will cross-pollinate, so seperate by at least 500' or plant in insect-proof cages covered with window screen. Select peppers that are ripe, fully colored and show no signs of disease to save for seed. Remove seeds off core and place on a paper plate to dry.

   

Flame Lettuce
Introduced to gardeners in 1988 by Harris Moran Seed Company. Describes as "distinctly red; slow bolting; a fast mover for markets demanding unique vegetables." Flame is a relatively recent introduction, however it is offered by only a few companies today. Looseleaf, 60 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

   

Giant Italian Parsley
Large bushy plants produce a continuous supply of large flat leaves with strong parsley flavor. Prized by Italian cooks. Biennial in zones 6-9, grown as an annual. 85-90 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep when there is still a chance of light frost. Can also be started earlier and set out as small plants. Seeds germinate in 14-21 days. Seeds can be soaked in warm water for 24 hours before planting. Prefers full sun to partial shade and well-drained, rich soil.

Seed Saving Instructions
Parsleys will cross-pollinate, so isolate by 1 mile the second year when going to seed. Dig up parsley roots in the fall before a hard frost. Trim the tops to 2" and store in sawdust, sand or leves. Parlsey roots will store 3-4 months when kept between 32-40 degrees F. Plant out in the early spring. Harvest seed heads when dry, and seperate by hand.

   

German Pink Tomato
One of the two original Bavarian varieties that started SSE. Potato-leaf plants produce large 1-2 pound meaty fruits with few seeds, very little cracking or blossom scars. Full sweet flavor. Excellent for canning and freezing. Dale Ott, Babtist Ott's son, is still growing this variety today in Festina, Iowa. In a typical season Dale will grow 30 plants and harvest 400 pounds of tomatoes for local customers. Indeterminate, 85 days from transplant.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Golden Midget Watermelon
Bred by Elwyn Meader and Albert Yaeger, and introduced in 1959. The product of a cross between New Hampshire Midget and Pumpkin Rind. The entire fruit turns golden- yellow when ripe. Salmon-pink flesh is pleasantly sweet, black seeds. Extremely early, ripening in just 70 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors in early spring. Plant seeds 1/2" deep and 2" apart in rows 20-24" apart. Thin seedlings to one every 12". Minimum soil temperature should be at least 65 degrees F. Excellent results can be obtained when grown on black landscape cloth.

Seed Saving Instructions
Watermelons will cross-pollinate. Separate varieties by 1/4 mile or hand-pollinate. Always select disease-free early maturing melons to save for seed. Remove seeds from ripe melons, thoroughly wash in a strainer and dry.

   

Grandma Einck's Dill
Iowa heirloom grown near Festina, Iowa since 1920 by Katherine Einck's family (Diane Whealy’s grandmother). Large fragrant heads produce many seeds. Abundant long-lasting foliage, great for canning or fresh use. Permanently maintained at Heritage Farm. Germination is erratic, so please be patient. Self-seeding annual. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors early in the spring when the ground has warmed. Place seeds just below the surface of the soil. Prefers full sun and rich well drained soil. Will readily volunteer each year from dropped seeds.

Seed Saving Instructions
Dill will cross-pollinate, so only one type should be grown if you intend to save seed, or can be isolated by 1/4 of a mile. Dill tends to go to seed very early and seed heads can be harvested when dry. Seeds can then be separated very easily by hand.

   

Greek Oregano
Delicious, pungent flavor, claimed to be better and sharper than true oregano. Light-green, oval, pointed leaves that are slightly wavy at the edges. Perennial in zones 4-9.

Planting Instructions
Start indoors 6-8 weeks before the last frost. Sow seeds just beneath the surface of the soil. Seeds will germinate in 10 days. Plant out after the danger of frost has past. Plants prefer full sun and very well drained soil.

   

Green Culinary Sage
Classic culinary herb for flavoring meat, cheese and bean dishes. Good for laying on the grill and flavoring meat with its smoke. Attractive grey-green woody/shrubby plant with beautiful mauve flowers. Perennial in zones 5-10.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds indoors on the surface of the soil 6-8 weeks before last frost. Can be directly sown outdoors two weeks after the last spring frost. Seeds will germinate in 4-21 days. Plant out into full sun after the danger of frost has passed in late spring. Prefers rich, moist well-drained soil.

Seed Saving Instructions
Seeds are ready to harvest when the blooms begin to turn brown and dry. When the heads are completely dry, gently crush the heads between your hands and then carefully winnow away the chaff from the seeds.

   

Jenny Lind Melon
Known in the Philadelphia markets before 1840 and named after a popular singer of that era. The original seed of this variety was most likely from Armenia. Small 2-2½ pound fruits are slightly ribbed and have a striking small button or knob on the blossom end. Whitish-green flesh is moderately thin (nearly 1"), sweet and juicy. 70 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Minnesota Midget Melon
Extra early. Vines seldom over 3' long. Round fruits are 3½" to 4", thick golden-yellow flesh. Edible to the rind, high sugar content. Resistant to fusarium wilt. Introduced by U of MN in 1948. 60-75 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Moon and Stars Watermelon
Members of the Seed Savers Exchange searched for almost a decade before Kent Whealy rediscovered this legendary watermelon on Merle Van Doren’s farm near Macon, Missouri, where it had been brought from Tennessee. The early history of Moon and Stars is unknown. Henry Fields (Shenandoah, Iowa) and Robinson Seed Co. (Waterloo, Nebraska) both were offering it during the 1930s. The medium-sized oval dark green fruits are covered with pea-sized bright yellow "stars" and usually one larger "moon." The fruits have sweet pink flesh and brown seeds. Foliage is also spotted. Reselected, pure and top quality seed. 88-90 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors in early spring. Plant seeds 1/2" deep and 2" apart in rows 20-24" apart. Thin seedlings to one every 12". Minimum soil temperature should be at least 65 degrees F. Excellent results can be obtained when grown on black landscape cloth.

Seed Saving Instructions
Watermelons will cross-pollinate. Separate varieties by 1/4 mile or hand-pollinate. Always select disease-free early maturing melons to save for seed. Remove seeds from ripe melons, thoroughly wash in a strainer and dry.

   

Mrs. Burn's Lemon Basil
Heirloom strain from southeastern New Mexico. Intense citrus aroma, popular for vinegars and seafood dishes. Plants are 12-18" tall, neat habit, with small green leaves, white flowers, dries nicely. The finest strain of lemon basil available. Annual. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors when the soil is warm and the temperature does not drop below 65 degrees F. Can be started indoors 4-6 weeks before planting out. Space plants 4-6" apart in all directions. Plant seeds just below the surface. Seeds germinate in 5-30 days, so keep moist. Prefers full sun and rich, well-drained soil.

Seed Saving Instructions
Basil will cross-pollinate with other varities of basil and must be seperated by 150' while flowering. Plants form seed capsules containing four seeds. Allow seed capsules to dry, then harvest and seperate by hand.

   

Napolean Sweet Pepper
We always enjoy reading old catalogs and are please to share this description from the 1923 L.L. Olds Seed Company: "Plants about 2 feet tall. Possibly the most productive of all the large peppers, bears consistently until frost. Mild as an apple. Fruit about 8" long and 4 ½" in circumference, standing upright until they get so heavy they sometimes droop. Remarkably early for a large fruited pepper. Might be classed as an extra early." Good flavor when green, sweeter when red. 70-90 days from transplant. Heat Scale: Sweet...0-1-2-3-4-5...Hot. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 8 weeks before transplanting. Sow seeds 1/4" deep. Keep soil moist and near 80 degrees F using bottom heat. Peppers may take two weeks to germinate. Transplant outdoors when daytime soil temperatures are near 80 degrees F and nighttime temperatures are above 50 degrees F.

Seed Saving Instructions
Peppers will cross-pollinate, so seperate by at least 500' or plant in insect-proof cages covered with window screen. Select peppers that are ripe, fully colored and show no signs of disease to save for seed. Remove seeds off core and place on a paper plate to dry.

   

Nepalese Bell Pepper
First offered by SSE member Ulrike Paradine from England. Fruits are 3-4" across and have thin crisp flesh that ripens from green to red. Sweet around the outer edges, but hot near the seeds. Will completely dry on the plant if the weather is dry. 90-100 days from transplant. Heat Scale: Sweet ..0-1-2-3-4- 5.. Hot.

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 8 weeks before transplanting. Sow seeds 1/4" deep. Keep soil moist and near 80 degrees F using bottom heat. Peppers may take two weeks to germinate. Transplant outdoors when daytime soil temperatures are near 80 degrees F and nighttime temperatures are above 50 degrees F.

Seed Saving Instructions
Peppers will cross-pollinate, so seperate by at least 500' or plant in insect-proof cages covered with window screen. Select peppers that are ripe, fully colored and show no signs of disease to save for seed. Remove seeds off core and place on a paper plate to dry.

   

Noir des Carmes Melon
One of the easiest to grow and most luxurious of all melons. Extremely dark green skin, almost black when immature, ripening to mostly orange mottled with green. Sweet, aromatic, orange flesh. Very productive. Sure to be a best seller at farmers markets and a new family favorite. 75 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Orange Oxheart Tomato
The Orange Oxheart tomato is a family heirloom from the Virginias region of the US. This fruit has a deep orange skin paired with dense orange flesh. It is heart-shaped and can grow to a large size, often weighing in at one pound or more. The meat of the tomato is dense with a rich aroma. This heirloom tomato has superior flavor and its meatiness makes it excellent for salsas and canning.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Pingtung Long Eggplant
Extremely beautiful eggplant that originated in Pingtung, Taiwan. Dark lavender fruits have an incredible shine that radiates off the skin. Slender fruits up to 12" long and just slightly more than 1" in diameter. Hardy, vigorous plants are disease resistant. 65-75 days from transplant.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Using landscape cloth or black plastic can accelerate growth and productivity in cooler climates.

Seed Saving Instructions
Eggplants will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other eggplants or plant in insect-proof cages covered with screen. Let the fruits grow far past maturity. Seeds are much easier to rmove from overripe fruits. Most seeds are brown and are usually located in the bottom portion fo the fruit.

   

Plum Lemon Tomato
Collected by Kent Whealy from an elderly seedsman at Moscow’s Bird Market during the August 1991 coup. Fruit is 3" long with pointed end, really resembles a lemon. Meaty, sweet refreshing flavor. Indeterminate, 72 days from transplant.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Purple Dark Opal Basil
Most likely the same basil Vilmorin referred to in 1885 as "Large Purple Sweet Basil." Beautiful lilac flowers with dark red stems. Excellent contrast with green basil, spectacular as a garnish, in salads, or for adding to basil vinegars. Extremely uniform, all purple Italian strain. Annual.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors when the soil is warm and the temperature does not drop below 65 degrees F. Can be started indoors 4-6 weeks before planting out. Space plants 4-6" apart in all directions. Plant seeds just below the surface. Seeds germinate in 5-30 days, so keep moist. Prefers full sun and rich, well-drained soil.

Seed Saving Instructions
Basil will cross-pollinate with other varities of basil and must be seperated by 150' while flowering. Plants form seed capsules containing four seeds. Allow seed capsules to dry, then harvest and seperate by hand.

   

Queen Anne's Pocket Melon
Almost spherical fruits are 3 1/2" long by 2 1/2" diameter. Velvety skin has jagged orange & yellow stripes. Thin white flesh is edible, but bland. Grown for its powerfully fragrant fruits. Victorian women carried these in their pockets for the perfume-like qualities. 80-90 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Reine Des Glaces Lettuce
Slow-bolting variety for summer plantings. Dark green deeply-cut pointed almost lacy leaves with thin points. Medium to dark-green crisp heart. Stays crisp on hot days. Use as a leaf lettuce after heads are cut. Crisphead, 62 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

   

Riesentraube Tomato
European heirloom variety grown by Pennsylvania Dutch as early as 1856. Name translates as "giant bunches of grapes." Produces tasty fruits in clusters of 20-40 and each distinctly pointed. To say that this variety is productive is an understatement. Round 1" fruit has a distinct nipple on the blossom end. In the past this variety was used to make tomato wine. Indeterminate, 80 days from transplant.

Planting Instructions
Sow indoors 1/4" deep in pots or flats 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Indeterminate, vines will require support.

Seed Saving Instructions
Cross-pollination between modern tomato varities seldom occurs, except in potato leaf varieties which should be separated by the length of the garden. Do not save seeds from double fruits or from the first fruits of large-fruited varities. Pick at least one ripe fruit from each of several plant. Squeeze seeds and juice into a strainer and wash, spread on paper plate and dry.

   

Rosemary
Attractive evergreen shrub with grey-green pinnate leaves. Classic herb has a spicy flavor used extensively to season meats and vegetables. Perennial in zones 8-10 grown as an annual in the North.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds 1/4" beneath the surface of the soil, indoors 8-12 weeks before the last frost. Seeds germinate in 14-21 days and need to be kept warm, above 70 degrees F. Plant out into full sun, after the danger of frost has past in late spring. Prefers sandy, somewhat poor, well-drained soil.

   

Rossa De Trento Lettuce
A beautiful broad savoyed red-tipped cutting lettuce from Milan, Italy. Reddish-brown leaves are oval with wavy frilled margins. Resists bolting and is widely adapted for outdoor plantings, but also performs well when grown in a greenhouse. Can be grown nearly all year round in mild climates. Looseleaf, 45-60 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

   

Rouge D'Hiver Lettuce
French heirloom described in Vilmorin’s The Vegetable Garden (1885). Produces 10-12" heads, green in the heart with brownish-red leaves. For spring, summer and fall planting. Better color in cold weather. Romaine, 60 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

   

Royalty Purple Pod
Heirloom variety discovered by Henry Fields in an Ozark garden in the 1930s, probably northern European origin. Plants climb vigorously to 6' and are extremely productive. High quality, meaty, stringless 1/2" thick by 5-7" long reddish-purple pods that blanch to light green. Pole habit, 68 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors after danger of frost has passed and the soil and air temperatures warm. Plant seeds 1" deep and 2" apart in rows 36-48" apart

Seed Saving Instructions
Bean flowers are self-pollinating and almost never cross-pollinate. To ensure absolute purity, seperate by the length of th garden from other beans. It is always best to save seed from plants that ripen first and are free from disease. Harvest seed pods when completely dry, crush in a cloth or burlap sack and winnow the seeds from the chaff.

   

Russian Tarragon
Prized for its sweet, anise- flavored leaves. Used extensively in fish and poultry dishes. Productive, freezes and dries well, but hard to beat fresh. Perennial in zones 3-8.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds 1/4" beneath the surface of the soil, indoors 4-6 weeks before the last frost. Can be directly sown outdoors just before the last spring frost. Seeds germinate in 7-20 days. Plant out into full sun or partial shade, after the danger of frost has past in late spring. Prefers average, well-drained soil and will tolerate dry conditions.

   

Seminole Pumpkin
Cultivated in Florida by the Seminole Indians in the 1500's. Keeps up to 1 year at room temperature! Fruits are sweeter than 'Butternut' and have a firm, deep orange colored flesh. Large vines bear bell-shaped buff colored fruits averaging 7" in diameter. Resistant to vine borers. A good choice for hot, humid, disease-prone areas. Give it ample moisture and room to roam. A choice variety for flavor and color. Pkt. (2 g), Limit 1 packet.

This is a perfect family or market squash. Though they are too small for all but the skillful widdler to carve, they make a gorgeous decoration whole and their flesh cannot be beat for flavor. The best looking ones need no special conditions to keep for a long long time; I kept one on my desk (maintained at 65 degrees) as a paperweight for over a year before it got a soft spot.

   

Spearmint
Dark-green, toothed leaves are used extensively as garnishes and in the food industry for flavoring in candies and toothpaste. Excellent with chocolate. Perennial in zones 4-10.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds indoors just beneath the surface of the soil 4-6 weeks before last frost. Can be directly sown outdoors just before the last spring frost. Seeds will germinate in 7-10 days. Plant out into full or partial shade, after the danger of frost has passed in late spring. Prefers average, well-drained soil and will tolerate dry conditions.

Seed Saving Instructions
Seeds are ready to harvest when the blooms begin to turn brown and dry. When the heads are completely dry, gently crush the heads between your hands and then carefully winnow away the chaff from the seeds. .

   

Slobolt Lettuce
A long-time garden standard. Large compact plants produce the entire summer. Thick clusters of light green frilled leaves. Extremely slow to bolt and does not turn bitter even while bolting. Developed by the USDA in 1946. Looseleaf, 45-55 days. CERTIFIED ORGANIC.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

   

Small Shining Light Watermelon
Old traditional Russian variety with round 10-12" fruits, very dark green rind and sweet red flesh. Introduced to American gardeners by SSE in 1991. Great little ice-box melon, holds for several weeks after picking. Early maturing variety that will ripen successfully in the middle territories of the former Soviet Union and also is well suited for northern U.S. gardens and high altitudes. 80-90 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors in early spring. Plant seeds 1/2" deep and 2" apart in rows 20-24" apart. Thin seedlings to one every 12". Minimum soil temperature should be at least 65 degrees F. Excellent results can be obtained when grown on black landscape cloth.

Seed Saving Instructions
Watermelons will cross-pollinate. Separate varieties by 1/4 mile or hand-pollinate. Always select disease-free early maturing melons to save for seed. Remove seeds from ripe melons, thoroughly wash in a strainer and dry.

   

Thyme
Native to the western Mediterranean. The Greek word Thymus translates as courage. Also thought by gardeners to be a home for fairies and was always planted in cottage gardens for this reason. It was also believed that a concoction of beer and thyme could cure shyness. Thume is one of the most versitile herbs used in cooking and can be used to season any meat or vegetable. Nice when added to olive oil.

Planting Instructions
Start indoors 6-8 weeks before planting out. Sow seeds on the surface of the soil. Seeds will germinate in 10-20 days. Transplant after the danger of frost has past. Thyme prefers full sun to light shade and a light, well-drained, dry soil. Perennial.

   

Tigger Melon
Our thanks goes to Baker Creek Seed Company who brought this stunning variety to our attention. The fruits are vibrant yellow with fire engine red zigzag stripes. The fragrance is powerful, similar to Queen Anne’s, but Tigger weighs about 1 pound and the white flesh is semi-sweet. Originated in Armenia. Unique variety for specialty markets. 85 days.

Planting Instructions
Best when direct seeded in warm soil after the danger of frost has passed. Plant 6-8 seeds 1" deep in 12" diameter hills spaced 6' apart each way. After germination pinch off all but 3-4 of the strongest seedlings.

Seed Saving Instructions
Melon will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other "melons" (cantaloupes, muskmelons, honeydew, snake melon, and Armenian cucumbers will all cross.) Always save seeds from disease-free, early ripening melons. Wash seeds from ripe melons in a strainer and dry. Seeds are ready to store when they break instead of bend.

   

Udumalapet Eggplant
Another beautiful and edible striped eggplant. Heavy yields of teardrop-shaped fruits are green with vibrant lavender stripes and striking green calyxes. Best eaten small, when fruits are about 3" long. Consistent heavy producer at Heritage Farm in northeastern Iowa on the Minnesota border. 80-90 days from transplant. CERTIFIED ORGANIC

Planting Instructions
Start seedlings indoors 6 weeks before the last frost. Thin seedlings when 2" tall and transplant into individual pots. Plant outdoors 24" apart in rows 36" apart. Using landscape cloth or black plastic can accelerate growth and productivity in cooler climates.

Seed Saving Instructions
Eggplants will cross-pollinate, so isolate 1/4 mile from other eggplants or plant in insect-proof cages covered with screen. Let the fruits grow far past maturity. Seeds are much easier to rmove from overripe fruits. Most seeds are brown and are usually located in the bottom portion fo the fruit.

   

Yugoslavian Red Lettuce
Red-tinged leaves form somewhat loose heads that can measure 12" across. Cutting the head in half exposes solid-green interior leaves and a center that is almost white. Excellent mild flavor. Butterhead, 55 days.

Planting Instructions
Sow seeds outdoors 1/4" deep and 1" apart. Thin to 8" apart for looseleaf and 12" for head lettuce. Does well when soil temperature is below 80 degrees F., try to avoid planting in the middle of summer. Keep soil moist for up to two weeks after planting.

Seed Saving Instructions
There is only a slight chance of cross-pollination between lettuces. As a precaution separate by 25' from other varities that are going to seed. Allow plants to bolt and form seed stalks. Seedheads may need to be protected from bird damage and rain when drying. Seeds are produced over a 2-3 week period and will require repeated harvesting.

 

Date: April19, 2008.....Time: 3-6pm.....Place: Eyebeam 540 21st Street, New York, NY..... Exhibition: Feedback

 
     
 
Photography Courtesy of Seed Savers Exchange