Intense Flavor from Heirloom Seeds
There are many reasons to plant heirloom seeds in your garden, including their intense flavor, color and texture, but perhaps one of the most compelling is the ability to save seeds for the following year. These are varieties that have been saved and passed down through the generations, favored for their natural resistance to problems such as insects, drought, or disease. They can help you maintain a sustainable lifestyle, creating a dependable food source year after year. Growing a variety of heirloom seeds, and adding to your collection annually, will provide rich flavor that can’t be matched with commercially grown produce.
Organic Heirloom Seeds
The definition of heirlooms varies somewhat, anywhere from having existed for 3 generations, to before 1950, or 30-50 years. To receive an organic certification, the USDA requires that seeds must be grown and harvested under rigorous conditions, including no pesticides or herbicides. The USDA Organic emblem can only be used on certified seeds and is the only guarantee that they have been grown under these conditions. Open-pollinated heirloom seeds, unlike hybrids, will typically breed true to the traits of the parent plant, unless they have been cross-pollinated in the garden. Organic heirloom seeds can supply healthy, nutritious and flavorful produce year after year.
Popular Heirlooms in the Garden
With so many delightful choices available, it can be difficult to know which heirloom varieties to choose. Most descriptions will include special qualities they will produce, such as a smoky flavor, or whether they are good for freezing or have a long storage life. It’s important to check their ideal growing conditions and length of time until harvest. Heirlooms have survived for centuries throughout the world thanks to their natural adaptability, including resistance to drought, or a short growing season.
While one size fits all doesn’t apply in gardening, the following heirloom seeds are a popular choice with gardeners throughout the country. Picking fresh produce from your own garden and enjoying a delightful burst of flavor day after day will make you want to add new varieties.
7 Heirloom Seeds to Grow in the Garden This Year
1. Organic Burpee Golden Beet – Although this beet isn’t the standard red, it provides an excellent addition to salads when raw, and is smooth and sweet once cooked.
2. Organic Improved Golden Sweet Corn – This variety provides tender sweet broad kernels on ears that grown 7-8 inches long.
3. Organic Cosmic Purple Carrot Seeds – Carrots were originally a variety of colors, including yellow, white, purple, red and even black. This coreless sweet carrot is a popular choice.
4. Organic Muncher Burpless Cucumber Seeds – Grow a prolific cucumber without indigestion with this variety that works fresh or pickled.
5. Organic Beefsteak Tomato Seeds – This meaty tomato makes a flavorful slicer straight from the garden, full of rich fresh flavor.
6. Organic Jubilee Watermelon Seeds – A popular variety thanks to its sweet flavor, large size, and disease resistance.
7. Organic Gourmet Greens Mesclun Mix – Get an early start gardening with this popular greens mix that includes popular salad varieties.
Get a jumpstart on your garden with these popular heirloom seeds that let you enjoy their flavor and produce for generations to come.