Have you noticed the new seed catalogs showing up in your mailbox? If you haven’t now is the time to make your requests and get on the mailing lists of your favorite gourmet and heirloom seed suppliers.
It seems like the vegetable seed catalogs start appearing earlier each year. My first one arrived in November. Not that I’m complaining, it’s always fun to see what’s interesting in the way of newly offered gourmet and heirloom vegetable seeds. And despite the garden being covered with snow, browsing through a seed catalog helps to plant images of the better gardening days to come.
I thought I’d post a brief preview of a few unusual and ornamental plants that caught my eye while scanning through the garden seed catalogs.
Lacinato Kale has been one of my favorite edible ornamental plants for its height, unique leaves, and beautiful appearance, not to mention the delicious taste of this leafy green vegetable. Now there’s a new strain called Lacinato Rainbow that adds hues of red and purple to the normally blue-green color of the crinkled leaves. This attractive kale plant automatically made its way into the “must grow” category.
Next on the list is Purple Peacock Broccoli, described as a purple stemmed broccoli with beautiful edible leaves. I’m looking forward to sampling the leaves of this broccoli, which are sure to boast a very high nutritional value.
Finally, there are several new ornamental mustards that I’ll consider growing. Pink Lettucy Mix and Pink Petiole Mix, both are cold hardy and offer an amazing range of color for the garden, as well as making an attractive addition to salads. There are also a couple of new Wild Garden Mustard Mixes that consist of a diverse selection of mustard greens with varying leaf shapes, colors, and flavors.
If you want me to be the guinea pig I’ll keep you posted on my experiences with these and other gourmet and heirloom vegetable varieties that I try out this year. I’ll also post pictures so that you can see how incredibly attractive and colorful these plants are when growing in the garden.
If you come across “must grow” varieties of your own as you browse the garden seed catalogs feel free to share them in the comment section below.
Other Related Vegetable Gardening Posts: