While I’m still sticking to the majority of our “staple crops” — garlic, tomatoes, beets and carrots — I can’t resist the temptation to grow more and try new varieties! I started my 2018 garden planning with the intention of focusing on volume over variety, and not adding any new items to the grow list. Well, that was short lived, and I quickly added on to the list with new items and varieties, I think I have still kept my wild side reigned in, and the list to (ahem) minimum.
Below is the list of everything we are growing. In brackets are the specific varieties for some of the plants, I have only included the variety if it is one that I have been planting with success for multiple years, and thus recommend.
2018 Vegetable Garden Crop List
Carrots (Nantes), Bell Pepper (California Wonder), Cabbage, Collards, Aspabroc, Brussel Sprouts, Spinach, Kale, Jalapenos, Green Beans (Maxibel Bush Beans), Sugar Snap Peas, Corn, Fingerling Potatoes, Beets (Detroit Red, Chiaggia Guardsmark, + two new ones), Radishes (Easter Egg), Italian Eggplant, Shallots (French Grey, 2nd year personal stock), Green Peas, Cucumber (Diva)
Garlic – After many years of trying to grow the Music variety, we decided to change. I have grown Music in multiple different gardens and have had only one good year. This year we put in 68 cloves of Kettle River Giant, and so far we have all 68 growing and looking good!
Tomatoes – I’m sticking to the varieties that have performed so well for me over the last couple of years – Pineapple, Beaverlodge Plum, Green Zebra, and Chocolate Cherry Tomato. The only newbie to my tomato line up is the Mortgage Lifter. I had been planting a Brandywine, but my seed saving was unsuccessful and I had a 0% germination rate for them. I quickly needed to order something else and get the seeds started, and the Mortgage Lifter is a variety I have been wanting to try. So I have a few seedlings of that growing right now in our mini greenhouse.
I also still have our asparagus bed (Jersey Knight) that is now three years planted, and I had put in 2 year old stock. I am hoping it continues to flourish. Our strawberry patches also do very well each year, and our blackberries and raspberries, while still establishing, are doing good.
Our blueberries are floundering in their current spot, so I am going to move them to a better suited part of the property this year. It’s a bit too wet where they are currently, and so I am sure this is stunting their growth.
Our herb wall continues to do well, and we have begun to consciously add in flowers and plants for the bees and ascetics since last year. I harvested thousands of marigold seeds from our plants last year, so I will be adding those to just about every corner, garden bed, planter, and so on, until we look like an outright marigold farm! I just love them – they are hardy, long lasting, and so beautiful – nevermind they help with garden pests! We have a very nice mix of different colors and patterns, so it looks amazing every year.
We still hope to start clearing land for the future fruit trees and grape vines, but we have a lot of work to do over on the other side, to help curb the excessive winter/spring flooding we experience ever year. We also want to completely redo our chicken coop, to make improvements that will make cleaning it easier, as well as to prevent any sort of flooding in their outdoor run. So we will see if the orchard starts happening, or if it takes the back seat for another year! If there is one consistency on a homestead or farm, it is that there is always work, always another project to do!