New Heirloom Offerings for Your Garden
‘Royal Beauty’ Daylily
Bred by Ophelia “Bright” Taylor and introduced in 1947, ‘Royal Beauty’ was a past winner of the highest award for hybridizers from the American Hemerocallis Society (now known as the American Daylily Society). This purple-shaded, wine-colored daylily has slender petals curling back gracefully from a vivid yellow throat. It’s been a favorite heirloom of our Missouri growers for over 40 years thanks to its “rich color, recurved petals, and beautiful foliage.” This semi-evergreen plant grows to about 36 inches in height, blooms midseason, and is hardy in Zones 5 to 9.
‘Royal Beauty’ Daylily. Photo by Old House Gardens.
$8.50 for 1 root
$68 for 10 roots
Easter Basket Radish Mix
This magnificent mixture of some of the most colorful spring radishes on the planet consists of about 15 different heirloom cultivars. You can expect to find ‘Japanese Minowase,’ ‘Malaga,’ ‘Zlata,’ ‘Early Scarlet Globe,’ ‘White Hailstone,’ and many more among the mix. These easy-to-grow roots add lots of color and flavor to early-spring salads.
Easter Basket Radish Mix. Photo by Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds.
$5.50 per packet (750 seeds)
‘Red Wethersfield’ Onion
This heirloom onion, also known as ‘Dark Red Beauty,’ has a rich history dating back to the 1700s. This onion is deep-red, slightly flattened, and is a fair keeper. It really shines as a fresh-eating onion that’s perfect for salads.
Onions are the backbone to many savory dishes, acting with such humility that they’re often overlooked in the garden. While easy to grow from seed, the key is selecting the right type for your region. Long-day onions, such as ‘Red Wethersfield,’ tend to grow best in the northern United States where the longer days of summer trigger bulbing. If you’re a northern grower, you’ll want to sow these onion seeds in early spring 1/2 inch deep and 1 inch apart in flats of rich soil. The seeds will sprout in 6 to 16 days. Thin the seedlings and transplant them in late spring to harvest in late summer.
‘Red Wethersfield’ Onion. Photo by A.P. Whaley.
$2.95 per packet (230 seeds)
The regular-leaf, indeterminate plants of ‘Winsall’ produce juicy, pink, oblate fruits that average about 1 pound each. It’s an outstanding slicing tomato with an excellent flavor that’s mildly sweet with just a hint of tartness.
The Peter Henderson Seed company originally introduced ‘Winsall’ as ‘Number 400’ in 1924 as a limited trial to their customers. They renamed it ‘Winsall’ the following year, stating, “It wins approval from 40,000 people — It wins prizes wherever shown — It wins by its qualities of sweetness, solidity and seedlessness — It wins because of its wonderful size and gorgeous color.”
‘Winsall’ Tomato. Photo by Special Collections USDA National Agricultural Library.
$2.75 per packet (20 seeds)
‘Blue Beech’ Tomato
This indeterminate, “sausage-type” paste tomato produces large, 8- to 10-ounce elongated fruits that are easy to process into sauce. The fruits ripen during a concentrated period, allowing for a more efficient canning process. It’s an excellent canning tomato that also tastes great when eaten fresh. ‘Blue Beech’ is well-adapted to northern climates, and it resists disease and blossom end rot better than others of its type. This strain of ‘Blue Beech’ was originally brought to Vermont from Italy during World War II. Its attractive green shoulders give it a distinct heirloom look.
‘Blue Beech’ Tomato. Photo by Johnny’s Selected Seeds.
$4.55 per packet (40 seeds)
How to Make Hard Apple Cider
Brewing hard cider from nonalcoholic, or “sweet” cider, is a simple process, and the inebriating end product is as delicious as it is intoxicating. Here are the steps you’ll follow to make hard cider of your own.
Successfully Cure Potatoes and Squash
Cure and store fall potatoes and squash for a healthy harvest that’ll last well into winter.
Navajo Wild Plants
In American Southwest Indian traditions, like for the Navajo and Hopi tribes, wild plants from the region served a variety of purposes and were of great importance.