Tuesday, March 17, 2015

The Maple Hill Hop 72

Maple Hill Hop

Welcome to 
The Maple Hill Hop.
This is a hop for folks who love the outdoors.
Feel free to post about anything that's going on
in your neck of the woods,
no matter the season.
(Please share only outdoor posts.)
*Please link back to Maple Hill 101.*

With spring right around the corner,
we know that many of you are itching to get planting.
Some of us are fortunate enough to be able to grow
nearly year-round.
This season, seeds were ordered from a new company.
You may have heard of Mary's Heirloom Seeds.


Their philosophy is shared on the website:

"Mary's Heirloom Seeds is a "mom and pop" small business created out of a desire to help people become more sustainable and self-sufficient. Our customers know that we are a simple phone call or email away.  Most importantly, we are happy to share growing advice freely and include free seed packs with most orders.

I don't sell anything that I wouldn't grow in my own garden.  All of the seeds listed are un-treated, non-hybrid, open-pollinated, non-gmo, heirloom seeds.  Plants are grown using no chemicals."

 Mary's has taken the "safe seed pledge", 
which means that they will not knowingly sell
GMO seeds.

Here's what we ordered from them:

There are varieties that I've never seen anywhere else,
like the Clemson Spineless Okra.
It'll be used in our pickled okra later in the season.
A new type of eggplant is always welcome here.
We can't get enough of the stuff.

This is the first time we will be growing beans for drying.
I can't wait to see these start climbing the trellis!

It's hard to believe that these little seeds will grow a plant
that will feed us for months.

 Here's what they're gonna look like when they are ready for harvest.

"Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant."
-Robert Louis Stevenson

A few flower seeds were ordered as well.
It's important to attract pollinators to the garden,
to help the veggies along.
For the first time, I'll be using a butterfly mix
in a new spot that I'm transitioning to a butterfly/caterpillar area.
I can't wait to see what pops up there!
I've been wanting to plant some bee balm for a while now.
It's been said that it is one of the most beneficial plants a gardener can sow,
because it attracts hummingbirds as well as butterflies and other pollinators.
It can even be used for medicinal purposes.

What a treat to receive a package of free seeds with my order!
With winter officially gone (it's been in the mid-to-high 80's here lately),
I'm ready to get out there and plant.
The shift to using heirloom seeds is a conscious effort on my part
to keep the good stuff moving.
I'm not only supporting a small business owner who is doing it right,
but I'm keeping alive the traditions of past gardeners who worked hard
to feed their families with these same varieties.
That link to history is priceless.


Mary has graciously offered up a Kitchen Herb Set to one lucky reader.

This set includes several packs of herb seeds, coconut coir pellets and plant markers.
All you need to do is tell me your plans for this year's garden.
We'll announce the winner on Friday's post.
Good luck!


Now, let's HOP!

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