Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Johnny’s Catalog: For Gardeners & More

Johnny’s Selected Seeds catalog is one of my favorites, though it is a bit different from most seed catalogs. It aims to serve both gardeners and small commercial growers, and its listed varieties show that difference.

A “Growing Information” box for each vegetable gives important information about growing it. The entries include culture, sowing dates, planting and harvest, storage, average direct seeding rate, graded seeds, seed specs, and packet size. Backyarders may be interested primarily in culture, sowing dates, and planting and harvest. Commercial growers may want to learn from the additional information. The first column in the second posted photo shows the entry for tomatoes.

Johnny’s home page lists these major categories: vegetables, fruits, flowers, herbs, cover crops & farm seeds, and tools & supplies. A tab at the top of the home page will get you a copy of the 206-page catalog by mail.

I often look at the hoe offerings because finding a good small hoe for fine weeding is difficult. Johnny’s has one at tools & supplies/hand tools/hoes/narrow collinear hoe, a 3.75” hoe that would make a fine replacement for my winged hoe when it wears out in about 2060. If you click “More details” on the Narrow Collinear Hoe entry, you’ll get more details, of course, plus a link to a short Johnny’s YouTube video showing you how to use a collinear hoe. I like that.

The headline on page 95 caught my attention: “Protect against Late Blight.” After the late-blight tomato devastation of 2009 and the threat that fizzled in 2010, informed tomato gardeners will stop and read about a new offering, Defiant PHR (F1), a determinate variety with 6 to 8 oz. fruit and “high resistance to late blight and intermediate resistance to early blight.” A mini-packet (20 seeds) is $4.95.

Price of a sample seed order: Packet (385 seeds), Red Ace beet, $2.95. Mini-packet (20), Big Beef Hybrid tomato, $2.95. Mini-packet (20), Queen Sophia marigold, $2.85. Shipping: $3.95. Total: $12.70. Plus applicable taxes, of course.

To go to the Johnny’s website, CLICK HERE.

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