I ordered a handful of seed catalogs last year (and several handsful of seeds), and apparently someone sold my info.

“Hey, y’all, check this one out! She’s interested in seeds!”

[insert the hiss of a crowded stadium filled with seed vendors here]

I have no less than 14 different gardening catalogs here in my house. And some companies even sent me two different editions. So, more than 14 catalogs, really.

With my kitchen looking so nice, and it inspiring me to actually sweep the floors each evening [insert the hiss of a crowded stadium cheers of those who walk barefoot here], I thought it best NOT to turn my entire dining room into a potting shed this year.

Which is hard.

The local greenhouse doesn’t offer all the fun and nifty heirloom tomatoes and open-pollinated corn, so catalogs become A Way. Of course, I can’t just select from one catalog either. No, I have to fall in love with a few items from several catalogs… And therefore pay several shipping and handling fees.

I’ve probably blogged all this info before, but my three preferred places are Territorial Seed Company (they also sell live plants) out of Oregon, Seed Savers Exchange of Iowa, and Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds in Missouri. They each offer a great selection of different (darnitall!) seeds, specializing in organic, biodynamic, open-pollinated, and heirloom stuff. Baker Creek offers the best shipping ($3 flat) and is owned/operated by young-ish (late 20s) homeschool graduates! Territorial charges $6.95 (more for live plants, heavy items, or expedited shipping), and Seed Savers varies from $3 to $9, and adjusts to 10% of total after your order exceeds $100.

I’m going to have to go with locally-greenhoused tomatoes and peppers this year (which I tend to do after my starts are killed by critters/wind/me anyway), but I’m wanting some nifty old-school squash from SSE, like these and these. These are beans from Baker Creek! I would love to see them in real life! I once ate some Russian Banana potatoes that were soooo delicious, but these French Fingerling potatoes look comparable and are cheaper. And you don’t have to peel them! Of course, there is added shipping charges for seed potatoes, which might preclude my obtaining them. I can buy local russet, yukon gold, and red seed and I’ll plant them if nothing else. According to my mom’s naturopath, potatoes are among the most chemically-infused foods out there. Whether because the vines are sprayed dead before harvest, the sprout-inhibitors applied after harvest, or just the chemical fertilizers and pesticides, apparently he doesn’t buy them for his family any more. I can’t say I don’t buy them, but I can say I’ll feel much better about growing them in my own dirt. And hopefully finding a way to preserve them well.

I’d also like to plant more Popcorn (I saved seed from last year’s harvest). I’d also like to try this cool Painted Mountain Corn, which can be ground into flour, but both that and the popcorn are open-pollinated and I might come out with some crazy mutant corn if I plant them both. Would my flour be fluffy? Could it pop? Perhaps my popcorn would explode into dust? Anyways, since my popcorn seed is free this year, I’ll probably go with that.

I still have some leftover mini-gourd seeds, and I don’t think we ever got around to finding space for the Baby Boo pumpkins, so if the seed is still good, we’ll use it.

I’m also very bad at leafy things, like lettuce and spinach. Maybe growing them indoors would suit me better? They always seem so … dirty. Perhaps because, unlike most other vegetables, they look the same whether they’re covered by bugs and dirt and *ahem* fertilizer, or they’re sitting on your plate. No digging, or peeling, or shelling, or other prep required. That should be a good thing, I suppose.

Peas require early planting, and I’m never ready in time to grow them. It gets hot enough here that mine burn up before producing. Or the few produced get eaten by my darlings. 🙂

This year, thanks to the Dawg, we have to build a fence. I’m getting nervous, because every spring brings a giant pile of chores to accomplish, but it also brings a giant pile of working hours for Hubby. Many springtime chores never get done. So, if we can do that and change up the irrigation system enough to make watering things more reasonable, this garden attempt just might happen.