Eggplant – $3.50 each packet – 15 seeds per packet. Can be started indoors for transplanting out after frost has passed. Time is from transplants, roughly. But they can be grown in Alberta outdoors! Love to be in a windless location.
E1. Kashmiri Brinjal – 80 days. These lavender fruits were 4” long, oval shaped and prolific. They did well despite a poor start weather-wise and much competition. From Kashmir, North India.
E2. Japanese White Egg – 65 days. An early maturing variety of white eggplants that turn yellow in the blazing sun. They are oval shaped and about the size to fit in your palm. Productive and good for our climate. They like lots of heat, so put them near the house out of the wind.
E3. Apple Green – 70 days. One of my favorites. These cute round to oval 3” fruits are lime green and perfect for stirfries or curries. They are dense and delicious. Start indoors as per all Solanum family members.
E4. Fast Round – 65 days. Abundant producer of the deep purple eggplants we know, smaller version obviously, but they kept going all summer, and liked the heat of the dry year. Fruits are about 4” long.
E5. Little Fingers – 65 days. Plants produce many small finger shaped deep purple fruits. Sweet and tender all summer, even when larger. 15 seeds, limited numbers.
E6. Early Black Egg – 68 days. Small perfectly shaped Black shiny eggplants up to 3” long (here in Alberta). Great taste and easy to grow.
E7. Black Pear – 69 days. Slightly larger than the Early Black Egg with great flavor and texture.
E8. Black King – Limited quantites. Very large eggplants with store quality and sized fruits of an intense dark purple. Good producer if in a sheltered hot location.
E9. Black Enorma – 78 days from transplants. Enormous long shiny dark black fruits that keep coming and coming. Do well in a sheltered spot with plenty of moisture.
Lentils 40 seeds per pkg. – $3.50
LN1. Ethiopian – 70 Days to dry lentils. These lentils are larger than what you may be used to at about 3/8” across. They are light greeny-brown and tasty. They grow readily in the North and shell easily. The whole plant can be pulled and dried by hanging upside down. Limited quantities – 15 seeds.
LN2. Red Lentils – 75 days to dry lentils. Limited offering. I had good success growing these lentils. Although small they are abundant, and easily shelled inside a sack or paper bag and pounding lightly on them prior to winnowing. Tasty and easy to grow in all conditions.
LN3. Green – old time favorite. 70 days. These are the ones you are familiar with, packed with nutrition and fiber. Try them!
Tomatillo (Physalis ixocarpa)
$3.50 per packet of 20 seeds. Dates are from transplants.
TMo. Cossack’s Pineapple Ground Cherry – 40-50 days This abundant spreading tomatillo produced amazing 1” husked, yellow, pineapple flavored ground cherry fruits, that were wonderful. All season producer, that falls to the ground when ripe. Self-seeder, and squirrels love them. Very low quantities.
TM2. Toma Verde – 78 days. These plants took over the garden in 2010, getting all the rain and heat they apparently needed to produce an abundance of large (as big as or bigger than any store bought) husked tomatillos that stored very well until after Christmas! Great producer.
Others – $3.50 per packet
OT16. Sorghum – Broom Corn. 105 days for broom stalks. 50+ seeds. This variety grows tall like corn with multicolored seed heads forming late in the season. Green stalks can be cut and used to make straw brooms. Fun to grow for a change.
OT17. Tobacco – Virginian. 100 + seeds. Grown for it’s long slender leaves, this tall plant has an abundance of seeds in the Nicotiana type flower head, of which family it is a member. Plants grow at least 5 feet tall. Leaves are harvested from the base up when they turn yellow.
OT19. Tobacco – Shaman’s Ceremonial. NEW. From Native American tribal elders in BC. This is only used for ceremonial purposes. Upright, yellow flowers, large elongated leaves.
OT20. Westbank First Nations – NEW. For smoking and gatherings, trading and gifts. This tobacco is a narrower plant, upright 24-36”, elongated green leaves. More white flowers.
OT21. Burley tobacco – for the famous blend for pipe smokers. Deep, smokey and rich flavor when aged and fermented.
For Edible oil seeds see Sunflowers in Flower section and flax and canola in the grains section.
Trees and Fruiting Shrubs – $3.50 each
TR0. Red Currant – An outstanding producer of small red berries in the summer that make excellent jams and jellies, wine or can be dried as an addition to cakes and cookies. The raisin of the prairies. Growing instructions included.
TR1. High Bush Cranberry – Another wild edible from tall shrubs that are abundant producers and yield red berries in the fall for uses similar to red currants. A must with turkey. Instructions included.
TR2. Tamarack – a variety of Larch that is known to drop it’s leaves in the fall, growing in wet areas and yielding an extremely hard and rot-resistant wood. Can be used as firewood, ornamental or other uses such as fencing, building and the like. Easily grown from seed in soil with a sandy medium in the beginning.
TR3. White Spruce – a conifer common to the Alberta prairies and woodlands, and growing tall and relatively large for here. Common uses as firewood and building needs. Can be pruned for ornamental uses and shelterbelts.
TR4. Black Spruce – A lowland variety of the white spruce, known for it’s compact growing habit, dense wood structure, and resistance to rot. It was said that a larger black spruce could be used to make shakes for roofs. Jack Pine was also useful for this. See below.
TR5. Scotch Pine – or Scotch pine, is one of the ornamental pines brought to Alberta by settlers and that likes to grow here. An uncommon trait is the long, graceful needles, common to pines, but especially long in this variety.
TR6. Lodgepole pine – used by Native Peoples across the land to construct their winter lodgings, these trees when found in stands grow straight and tall. Excellent ornamentals as well, and easy to grow on any soil.
TR7. Jack Pine – A variant of the lodgepole, these pines are not as straight, but have great character, loving sandy soils where they are readily found throughout the province. Used for shake manufacturing as they are resistant to rot and large enough to accommodate this use readily.
TR8. Ponderosa Pine – these tall giants usually inhabit warmer climes, common to the interior of BC, in places like the Okanagan Valley where they are immense, daunting giants. We have the fortune of having an Alberta Source where these trees were lovingly established by a master gardener. Special seeding instructions included.
TR9. White Pine – limited quantities. These seeds are again native to warmer areas of BC, but can be established here and found occasionally in Alberta.
TR12. Fast-growing spruce (likely Norway) – obtained from cones of a neighbor, these spruce can grow incredibly fast here. Have a nice blue tinge but not blue spruce as the needles are softer. Sold in a kit with instructions for $3.50.
TR10. Pincherry – harvested sustainably from wild Alberta groves nearby. These tree/shrubs produce a small sour cherry that can be used like red currants or chokecherries.
TR11. Chokecherry – harvested sustainably from wild Alberta groves nearby. These tree/shrubs produce a small sour cherry that can be used like red currants or pincherries. They pack a very sharp taste that drains the moisture from your mouth, hence the name. But they are fantastic for wine or jelly. Limited quantities
TR13. Wild Strawberries – SOLD OUT.
TR14. Red Raspberry – yes you can grow from seed. Requires a cold hardening period while damp. Will yield in 2 years.
TR15. Landscape pines – Most likely scotch or a variation on them, they grow very round and appealing and block the wind most effectively. All pines thrive in full sun conditions.
TR16. Colorado Blue Spruce – One of the most well knows Spruces for landscape and shelterbelt uses. Beautiful deep blue color, large golden cones. Grow in starter trays with a layer of sand over top to prevent damping off, which they do very readily!!
TR17. Norway Spruce – large and dominant in the landscape, these trees are very rare in Alberta but can be found in some of the older shelterbelts in protected locations. They grow with a pendulant habit, their long branches draping down and then growing upward at the tips. The cones are huge and the source of wonderful crafting materials for Christmas baskets and the like. Great trees.