Brisbane Local Food

Growing local

My big wish list for the coming months/year

Ok, I just went nuts cutting-and-pasting from the DIgger's catalogue. I know this massive list might be over-the-top, and some stuff might not be possible, but it's a list of stuff I like from the catalogue. I'll do more research about the suitability to our climate, my soil type, etc., but it's a starting point. I'll use it as a bit of a menu to choose from when planning what to plant/buy in the coming year... or at least until the Spring catalogue comes out in August! Comments always welcome :-)

Oh, and what does "F1" mean?
--------
Watermelon Sugar Baby- Citrullus lanatus
Tomato Periforme Abruzzese - Lycopersicon lycopersicum
Bean Lazy Housewife - Phaseolus vulgaris
Pumpkin Wee B Little - Cucurbita pepo
Watermelon Moon and Stars - Citrullus lanatus
Onion Sweet Domenica - Allium cepa
Sweet Corn Golden Bantam - Zea mays
Tuscan Kale (Cavalo Nero)
Tomato Costoluto Genovese - Lycopersicon lycopersicum
Eggplant Heirloom Mixed - Solanum melongena
Quinoa - Chenopodium quinoa
Mary Washington Asparagus
Aquadulce broad beans
Glycine max ‘Jabiru’ Soy bean
Mini Gourmet beetroot
Brassica oleracea broccoli
Seven Colour Mix capsicum
Tobago Seasoning chilli
Joe’s Long Cayenne chilli
Carrot Heirloom Mix
Mini Round (Paris Market) carrots
Hollow Crown Improved parsnip - Pastinaca sativa
Celery - Apium graveolens var. dulce
Mexican Sour Gherkin cucumber
Florence Fennel
Mignonette lettuce
Nasturtium officinalis watercress
Baby Leaf Gourmet Mix (Tatsoi, Lime Mizuna, Pronto Roquette, Bull’s Blood Beet, Rouge d’hiver and Goldrush Lettuce.)
Baby Leaf Provencal Mix (Oakleaf Lettuce, Endive, Chervil and Roquette)
Mung Bean Shoots - Vigna radiata
Spicy Mix Sprouts (Broccoli, Daikon and Giant Red Mustard)
Health Mix Sprouts (Red Radish, Alfalfa, Broccoli and Mung Beans)
Pea Shoots - Pisum sativum
Alfalfa Sprouts - Medicago sativa
Broccoli Sprouting Seed - Brassica oleracea
Complete Sprouts Kit
Elephant Leek
King Richard Leek
Cream Gold onion
Long Red Florence
Evergreen Bunching spring onion
Shallot Picador F1
Heirloom Melon Collection (Moon & Stars, Cream of Saskatchewan, Watermelon, plus Ananas, Prescott Fond
Blanc and Delice de la Table Rockmelon)
French Charentais melon
Australian Heirloom Mix pumpkins (Jap, Ironbark, Queensland Blue and Australian Butter)
Potimarron pumpkin
Greenfeast peas
Sugar Snap Climbing peas - Arachis hypogaea
Virginia peanuts
Sunflower Heirloom Mix
French Breakfast radish
Ten Colour Heirloom Mix tomatoes (Green Zebra, Lemon Drop, Black Krim, White Beauty, red Tommy Toe, pink Brandywine, Purple Russian, cream Wapsipinicon Peach, Brown Berry and orange Jaune Flammeé.)
Tomato San Marzano
Italian Vegetable Collection ( Italian Romano beans, Italian Fryers Mix capsicums, Lollo Mix lettuce,
Periforme and Principe Borghese tomatoes, and Sweet Basil)
Perpetual Spinach
Fig ‘Black Genoa’ - Ficus carica
Blueberry ‘Northland’ - Vaccinium corymbosum
Apple Collection
‘Doyenne Du Comice’ pear
‘Williams’ pear
Clever clover kit
Homegrown Whole Grains (book)
Beneficial Insect Collection (Queen Anne’s Lace, Alyssum, Phacelia, Cottage Salvia, Psyche White Cosmos and Bronze Fennel)
Field of sunflowers collection (Landscape, Save, Sonnet, Prado Red, Evening Sun)
Cape Gooseberry – Physalis peruviana
Alpine Bush Strawberry ‘Benary Ruegen’
Spearmint – Mentha spicata
Chives Garlic – Allium tuberosum
Pyrethrum True Insecticidal - Tanacetum cinerariifolium
Basil Sweet
Stevia Sugar Plant
Black Cumin – Nigella sativa
Chervil – Anthriscus cerefolium
Oregano Greek – Origanum vulgare
Marjoram Sweet – Origanum majorana
Sage – Salvia officinalis
Sorrel Large Leaf – Rumex acetosa
‘Giant Russian’ sunflower
Soil Testing Kit for N.P.K
Glass Sprouter
GARDEN NETTING


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Comment by Florence on July 18, 2010 at 18:11
I agree with what everyone says here.. I have personal experience of buying a lot of seeds before I was ready to plant, and ended up with a few I really wanted to grow expired and couldn't germinate them now I am ready ^^.. so as difficult as it can be, try to hold off from buying too much at the start..

As Donna mentioned, most of what you listed are available from Donna or BSS, out of the ones they didn't have I should be able to divide a sage for you. If you don't mind supermarket seeds, and you just want to try growing a few to see how they go, I can pack some carrots, beetroot, radish and leek seeds if you're going to the next Garden visit/BSS meeting.
Comment by Scarlett on July 18, 2010 at 18:11
you're welcome :)
i love it how you're so into it - gotta help that! :)
Comment by Daniel on July 18, 2010 at 18:06
Wow, so much information to process. I didn't intend to buy all of these, or even a lot at once. It was just a list of the things I like from the catalogue, which I definitely knew I'd need to thin down to ones that would actually work and be manageable for me. I'll have to spend some more time replying to the big responses here. In the meantime, thank you for helping me so much! :-)
Comment by Scarlett on July 18, 2010 at 17:44
And like Donna says - the seed savers network is gold :)
Comment by Scarlett on July 18, 2010 at 17:44
Hi Daniel

The Green Grocer in Boundary Rd West End sells Eden Seeds (Northern NSW open pollinated varieties). Always worth a go - I just pick whatever's there and see how it goes.

Also check out www.greenharvest.com.au - they have a seed catalogue online - they also mail order. They're in Maleny, so the climatic fit is heaps better than with Diggers ( diggers rock, but they are in a temperate zone, not warm temperate or sub-tropical - very different).

Some of the stuff you have in your list would be fine here. Things that I think might be problematic are:

Tomato Periforme Abruzzese - Lycopersicon lycopersicum
Onion Sweet Domenica - Allium cepa
Tomato Costoluto Genovese - Lycopersicon lycopersicum
Eggplant Heirloom Mixed - Solanum melongena
Quinoa - Chenopodium quinoa
Seven Colour Mix capsicum
Tobago Seasoning chilli
Joe’s Long Cayenne chilli
Mini Round (Paris Market) carrots
Hollow Crown Improved parsnip - Pastinaca sativa. Tricky to grow up here (but possible, and only from seed - suggest Eden seeds parsnip seeds)
Mexican Sour Gherkin cucumber - might be ok, don't know
Florence Fennel - grows but not very well (unlike down south where it is a virulent weed)
Cream Gold onion
Long Red Florence (onion?) -onions are difficult, much better to get locally adapted ones. try bunching ones, tree onions, elephant onions, shallots etc. leeks and spring onions are your best bet.
Shallot Picador F1 - can't save seeds
Heirloom Melon Collection (Moon & Stars, Cream of Saskatchewan, Watermelon, plus Ananas, Prescott Fond
Blanc and Delice de la Table Rockmelon) - probably cold adapted, although moon and stars is OK up here
French Charentais melon
Ten Colour Heirloom Mix tomatoes (Green Zebra, Lemon Drop, Black Krim, White Beauty, red Tommy Toe, pink Brandywine, Purple Russian, cream Wapsipinicon Peach, Brown Berry and orange Jaune Flammeé.) a few of theese are problematic - good in Brisbane are roma, tommy toe, beefheart, cherry, zebras (note russians are apparently problematic up here) anything with fusarium resistance is good
Tomato San Marzano
Italian Vegetable Collection ( Italian Romano beans, Italian Fryers Mix capsicums, Lollo Mix lettuce,
Periforme and Principe Borghese tomatoes, and Sweet Basil)
Perpetual Spinach - which one is this? Lots of subtropical varieties - explore those? they'll survive the summer and produce in the 'off season' ie summer
Fig ‘Black Genoa’ - Ficus carica - have only seen the green one up here
Blueberry ‘Northland’ - Vaccinium corymbosum - there is a warm adapted variety that people try up here - only seems to fruit for the first season?
Apple Collection
‘Doyenne Du Comice’ pear
‘Williams’ pear
Clever clover kit
Beneficial Insect Collection (Queen Anne’s Lace, Alyssum, Phacelia, Cottage Salvia, Psyche White Cosmos and Bronze Fennel) - alyssum and cosmos ok, salvias in bunnings are the ones to get (there are millions of different ones), fennel no good, have not seen queen anne's lace flowering up here - let carrots go to seed, is the same. also try yarrow = Achillea millefolium
Alpine Bush Strawberry ‘Benary Ruegen’ - suggest get local ones from runners
Spearmint – Mentha spicata - get local mints from runners. Spearmint fairly tricky - gets 'damping out' diseases
Chives Garlic – Allium tuberosum - divide someone's clump
Pyrethrum True Insecticidal - Tanacetum cinerariifolium - poison. i wouldn't play with this - risk of permanent nerve damage - search forum for more info (under spinosad discussion from memory)
Black Cumin – Nigella sativa - I've tried to grow this in melbourne, didn't germinate for me. I've not seen it up here.
Oregano Greek – Origanum vulgare - get from cuttings
Marjoram Sweet – Origanum majorana - get from cuttings
Sage – Salvia officinalis - difficul from seed - seedlings much easier
Sorrel Large Leaf – Rumex acetosa - needs a bit of cold but i know it grows on mt nebo

cheers
Scarlett
Comment by Donna on July 18, 2010 at 17:13
Seriously am starting to feel like a 'pusher' :) BUT, I agree with Elaine DON'T DO IT!!

To start with, seed viability is variable and some seeds need to be fresh (within 3 months) when planted, whereas some can be up to 5+ years old and still give good germination rates - this depends on type as much as storage conditions. So when buying seeds you should only buy for the current/ next seasons planting - remembering how many seeds are in a packet and your spacing. As an example one single packet of tomato seeds would probably plant an acre - you probably only need about 10 - 20 seeds max for a family in the first growing season, from which you can them save enough to fill 100 packets! Note, I fully made these statistics up as an example ;)

Seeds are also WAY too expensive... considering that they are FREE to grow and share with others (with open pollinated/ not F1 varieties), and the Brisbane Seed Savers (which is your group as much as anyone's) has a lot of what you will need to start - maybe not the varieties exactly you were after but worth a try for a first season anyway. If they are in the box, someone here in this climate managed to grow them :)

If you can make it to the next Garden Visit, I am happy to give you at least one or two seeds of pretty much everything on your list, except the sprouts which Elaine covered above and some of the things that don't go to seed as easily in our season - albeit not the exact same variety.

I (or BSS) don't have the following (or anything simliar)

Carrot, beetroot, spring onion, onion, radish, leek, celery,

Quinoa - Chenopodium quinoa
Nasturtium officinalis watercress0
Long Red Florence
Homegrown Whole Grains (book) -- see if you can borrow it first to see if you like it
Beneficial Insect Collection (Queen Anne’s Lace, Alyssum, Phacelia, Cottage Salvia, Psyche White Cosmos and Bronze Fennel)
Spearmint – Mentha spicata
Pyrethrum True Insecticidal - Tanacetum cinerariifolium
Stevia Sugar Plant
Chervil – Anthriscus cerefolium
Oregano Greek – Origanum vulgare
Marjoram Sweet – Origanum majorana
Sage – Salvia officinalis
Sorrel Large Leaf – Rumex acetosa

Onion is not really ideal in our climate and only for autumn winter to my knowledge - not sure if it is too late for leek now too?
Celery, think it is wrong season? also hard to grow I believe?

With the fruit trees, I probably wouldn't recommend Diggers for their price & climate, there are better more locally suited places available in my opinion- check out a list under the Products section on the forum for more ideas. Also, from personal experience can not recommend blueberries in this climate although others have been more successful, there is a discussion on this. In fact looking at the rest of your fruit tree selection would recommend you do more research, as personally I probably would go for a different selection completely based on our climate...

Alpine Bush Strawberry ‘Benary Ruegen’ -- couldn't germinate any, in my experience these are better from pups or the shop. I actually have a pup I almost cut off if you want me to pot it up, although you would have to wait until the next GV for the roots to develop - you can get them from Bunnings cheap though, even heirloom ones sometimes.

If you do end up buying the following, I would be interested in going half for the following, I am a member of Diggers so I get the discounted members rate (buying seed is like an addiction, trust me on this)
Baby Leaf Gourmet Mix (Tatsoi, Lime Mizuna, Pronto Roquette, Bull’s Blood Beet, Rouge d’hiver and
Goldrush Lettuce.)
Baby Leaf Provencal Mix (Oakleaf Lettuce, Endive, Chervil and Roquette)
Black Cumin – Nigella sativa
Comment by Elaine de Saxe on July 18, 2010 at 7:02
Hooley dooley, Daniel! Start simple until you get the hang of growing plants and find out by trial and error what grows in your patch. The easiest are the leaf crops - Lettuces and the like plus quick-ups like Radishes. A couple of Tomatoes and you've got the beginnings of a salad.

Try and get local-derived seeds or failing that, seeds of plants which are likely to grow here. A lot of the ones in your list will grow only in the winter which for practical growing purposes, is almost over except for buying seedlings.

F1 means 'first filial' it's the result of crossing two different varieties - this is not recommended if you want to save seed since the next generation (the seeds you have saved) will be more resembling the parents individually instead of the blending of characteristics.

There's a beaut pH meter available through Green Harvest which I recommend rather than the fiddly test kit. I have had continuing success with a Sproutamo rather than a jar - available online from down south.

Few if any stone fruit (including Pears) will regularly produce fruit in this area - micro-climates vary, but basically save your money and buy tropical-type/Asian fruit trees. Speaking from poverty-making experience! Citrus can do well although never so far for me ;-)

With sprouts you can buy sprouting seeds from the local supermarket (Mung Beans, Lentils) and the local bulk foods shop/health food shop (Alfalfa, Wheat, Barley, Buckwheat, Fenugreek). The sprouting supply companies do charge rather excessively for common seeds. Start small with sprouts, Alfalfa and Mung Beans are the simplest.

Your enthusiasm is infectious - but having been there and done that, it's simpler and less vexing to start small and simple and learn as you go!
Comment by Daniel on July 17, 2010 at 23:00
My main hope is that I can eat excellent quality, healthy food, and make this year the healthiest one in my life. Besides that, I think I am addicted to growing things... even though I've only grown bird seed, four sunflowers (now about 10cm high, with one falling over since I transplanted it), and germinated a corn kernel when I was in primary school. I've even done the "get out of bed, shoes on, straight outside to check on things" routine over the past week! :-)

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