This is the 10th year for Annapolis Seeds! I’m excited to be able to offer more than 500 varieties this year, including about 50 new ones.
I recently browsed through some of our old catalogues from the early years, it was fun to see how much the seed collection has grown over time. It was also nice to see so many familiar names; Purple Peacock, Gardener’s Delight and Mammoth Russian have kept their place among our favourites, now a decade later.
We grew a lot of seeds in 2017! The growing season was a really good one for us. The consistent rains were a nice change from the intense drought of the summer before. At the same time, the extra moisture presented it’s own set of challenges.
Our beans had struggled in the drought of 2016, so I planted a lot in 2017 to make up for lost time. They thrived in the early summer moisture, growing tall with luxurious foliage. The trouble started in August as the pods began to form. Mold everywhere! Whole plants were dying from the ground up. The over-abundant leaves had trapped in so much humidity they could never dry off between rains. It took several days of careful pruning and staking to give them extra ventilation. It seemed to work! And when it was all harvested in September we had one of the biggest bean crops ever. Lesson: more space between my rows next year.
Medicinal herbs were a big theme of our 2017. We established several new perennial herb gardens on the farm, and began sowing and growing quite a few new species. Most of these new plant friends are still young, but keep an eye out for more medicinal herbs in the catalogue in future years.
One of the garden highlights this summer was the Inca Berry, the larger and more intensely flavoured cousin of the Ground Cherry. They look similar, but taste (in my opinion) even better.
Lebanese Zaatar was another highlight. A relative of summer savoury, from the mountains of Lebanon. The seeds of this special culinary herb were given to me by Niki Jabbour last spring, and I’m glad to be able to help propagate them here in NS.
Down the road at Twisted Brook, Steph grew out a whole range of compact, container-friendly tomatoes as part of the collaborative breeding Dwarf Tomato Project. A selection of those are in the catalogue this year.
Many thanks for supporting local seeds and community seed saving! We couldn’t be saving these seeds without you. I’m looking forward to Annapolis Seeds' 2nd decade.
Wishing you an abundant growing season in 2018!