Some 10 years ago as a Master Gardener intern, I wanted to learn more about heirloom vegetables and share that information in a talk. At that time, it wasn’t easy to find information although I do live in the state that is home to Seed Savers Exchange, a non-profit organization dedicated to saving and sharing heirloom seeds.
How times have changed
Today when I visit the Des Moines Downtown Farmer’s Market and the farmers markets in Ames, there are heirloom vegetables galore – especially tomatoes. In the past several years, I’ve been surprised … and delighted to find heirloom tomato plants for sale at Iowa greenhouses, grocers and farmers markets.
Today there are fact sheets and columns on heirloom vegetables written by land-grant university Extension horticultural specialists and faculty. There is information on how-to save open-pollinated seed. Here’s what I found online. If you know of others, please add in the comments.
Clemson Cooperative Extension fact sheet lists specific varieties and background on heirloom vegetables, directions and tips for saving seed. http://www.clemson.edu/extension/hgic/plants/vegetables/gardening/hgic1255.html
Great Lakes Region, 2009 Evaluation of Ten Heirloom Tomato Varieties at Nine Sites: Barker, N.Y.; Rock Springs, Penn.; Piketon, Ohio; Columbus, Ohio; South Charleston, Ohio; Macomb County, Mich.; West Lafayette, Ind.; Dixon Springs, Ill. and Waseca, Minn. http://anrcom.msu.edu/news/article/colorful_tomatoes_will_hit_local_markets_this_summer
University of Florida, Okeechobee County, Heirlooms – and other Seedy Words, has seed sources and references, http://okeechobee.ifas.ufl.edu/News%20columns/Heirloom.Vegetables.htm
Brevard County, http://brevard.ifas.ufl.edu/Forms%20and%20Publications/PDF/Heirloom%20vegetables%20trifold%206121.pdf
University of Hawaii, Heirloom vegetable varieties: a promising future for past treasures? http://www.ctahr.hawaii.edu/sustainag/news/articles/V6-Radovich-heirloom.pdf
University of Kentucky, lots of selected resources, http://www.uky.edu/Ag/NewCrops/introsheets/heirloom.pdf
Washington State University, Community Horticulture Fact Sheet #17, Saving Seeds from Heirloom and Other Vegetables, http://king.wsu.edu/gardening/documents/17HeirloomVegetablesandSavingSeed.pdf
Tags: educational resources