Category: Veg Fruit Herbs

Garlic

By , September 15, 2014

September 15th, 2014

Grow your own Garlic!

Vampires beware it’s time to plant garlic. Fall is a great time to plant your garlic crop for next year and growing good garlic is easy. If you just plant the cloves in the ground anytime between September and March and it will probably grow. But if you want to grow large, healthy bulbs, there is more to it. Click here to download our Garlic Growing Tips Information Brochure.

This year you can choose from ten different varieties of garlic, including three varieties of certified organic garlic. They include:

  • Regular White – regular type of white garlic, has a mild flavor
  • Elephant - has large cloves but very mild flavor
  • German Hardneck – A very nice strain for our northern climates. Great for roasting due to large cloves.
  • Legacy - A rocambole type hard neck garlic produces 4 to 6 cloves in a large bulb. Has a strong, full flavour.
  • Mexican Purple – This garlic has a hot flavour when raw, but becomes milder when baked
  • Metechi – Spicy hot flavor, said to grow like a weed and store like a rock
  • Music - Music is large beautiful and a well-formed porcelain garlic. Its flavor is very rich and musky, strong and robust and sticks around for a while.
  • Red - The standard of excellent flavor in rocambole garlic. This is a delightfully mild, full flavored, productive garlic that store very well, present a nice appearance and has an excellent raw flavor
  • Russian Red – A rocambole hardneck garlic with a rich, musky flavour and is very hot when eaten raw. Grows great in the northwest

Fall and Winter Vegetables

By , September 1, 2014

September 1st, 2014

It is time to start Your Winter Vegetable Garden!

As the summer begins to wind down you should be thinking about growing winter vegetables. There are many vegetable that you can grow during a west coast winter. You can start them from seed like lettuce, carrots, and radishes. You can also buy plants that are already growing like broccoli, cabbage, kale, and Swiss chard. You can even plant herbs like Sage and Thyme now for a fall or winter harvest.

Herbs

By , June 18, 2014

June 18th, 2014

Savour the Flavour of Fresh Herbs!

If you enjoy cooking with fresh herbs there is nothing more rewarding than a herb garden full of Rosemary, Thyme, Sage, and Basil to use in your culinary creations. There are many flavourful herbs that are easy to grow in your garden or in pots on your patio. In addition to their flavour many herbs are very aromatic and make an excellent addition to your garden. The beautiful blue flowers of rosemary are as ornamentally beautiful as they are culinarily delicious. I can not imagine a garden without at least a few herbs.

You can choose from a broad range of herbs including:

  • Basil
  • Bay Leaf
  • Cat Grass
  • Chamomile
  • Chives
  • Cilantro/Coriander
  • Curry
  • Dill
  • Lemon Verbena
  • Oregano
  • Parsley
  • Majoram
  • Mint
  • Rosemary
  • Sage
  • Savory
  • Stevia
  • Thyme

For some advice on growing herbs, including a chart of culinary uses, click here. For a list of companion planting, including herbs and vegetables, click here.

Tomatoes

By , June 14, 2014

June 14th, 2014

Taste the flavour of home grown Tomatoes!

The weather is now warm enough to start thinking about putting tomatoes outside in the garden. If the night time temperatures are below 10 degreec Celcius it is recommended that you provide some protection. You can do this by covering your tomatoes with plastic or a white cloth like our “Crop Cover” or “Frost Blanket”. When the night time low is above 10 degrees Celsius, or 50 degrees Fahrenheit, you can leave them uncovered.

Whether you are a seasoned tomato growing veteran or a new gardener here are a few tips to help you grow better tomatoes:

  1. Tomatoes are heavy feeder, they are the teenage boys of the plant world. You should add manure and fertilizer to the soil before you plant.
  2. When you plant the tomatoes plant them deeper as new roots will develop along the stem helping your plants grow faster and stronger. (Except ‘Mighty Mato’ grafted Tomatoes, do not plant them below the graft)
  3. Water regularly all summer, twice a week early in the season and daily during the summer months. Tomatoes that do not get regular water are more likely to develop diseases and are less likely to produce as much fruit. They also develop thicker skin if not watered properly.
  4. Fertilize weekly with a water soluble fertilizer like Miracle Gro Tomato Food 18-18-21 or monthly with a granular fertilizer like Evegro’s Vegetable and Tomato Food 10-15-19.
  5. Add Lime to your soil before you plant and every month during the growing season. Lime helps balance the pH and provides Calcium and Magnesium to the plants.

With so many varieties of Tomatoes to choose from here are a few varieties that perform well in our climate:

  • Ball Extra Early – a medium sized tomato that produces early
  • Beefsteak – one of the largest tomatoes with lots of meaty flesh
  • Early Girl – a medium sized early producing variety
  • Sungold – a golden cherry tomato
  • Sweet 100 – an excellent small cherry tomato
  • Sweet Million – a smaller version of the sweet 100 that produces an abundant crop
  • Tumbler – a great cherry tomato for hanging baskets that produces all summer until frost
  • Tomaccio – a super sweet grape type tomato that is great for making Sun Dried Tomatoes

In addition to these varieties you can choose from a selection of Heirloom Tomato varieties including:

  • Bloody Butcher – a medium sized tomato that is great for slicing
  • Brandywine Black – a large heirloom tomato
  • Latah – an early producing medium sized tomato
  • Nyagous – a medium to large early to mid season tomato
  • Prudens Purple – a medium tomato great for slicing

Be sure to stake your tomatoes as they grow to give them support as the fruit matures. You can stake them up with a basic bamboo or cedar stake or buy a “Tomato Cage” that provides support for the leaves as well.

Click here to download our information brochure on Tomatoes.

Fruit Trees Have Arrived

By , June 13, 2014

June 13th, 2014

Grow your own fresh fruit!

If you have been thinking about growing your own fruit now is a great time to plant fruit trees and other berries. You can choose from over 75 varieties of Apples, Apricots, Cherries, Peaches, Pears, Plums, and more. Please call the stores to check whether we have an item in stock as they sell out quickly. If you have a small space garden we have a selection of Dwarf fruit trees including apples, cherries, and peaches.

Please Note: Due to space limitations not all varieties are available at our Vancouver store but you can have any variety transferred to the Vancouver store from our Surrey store.

Click here to download our 2014 Fruit Tree List – Updated July 29th, 2014

Sweet Potato

By , May 1, 2014

May 1st, 2014

Grow Your Own Sweet Potatoes!

If you have a nice sunny spot and you’re looking for something easy to grow try one of the Sweet Potato varieties available. Sweet Potatoes, which are in the Ipomoea family are tubers that you can plant in a pot or in the ground. You might be more familiar with their ornamental cousins which have beautiful chartreuse or dark purple foliage. The ornamental varieties develop tubers as well, although they are generally not edible. The edible varieties (Ipomoea batatas) have a plain green leaf and rarely flower. They require little watering or feeding and when harvested they store very well. For 2013 you can choose from the following varieties:

  • Japanese Yam
  • Korean Purple

For more information about how to grow Sweet Potatoes click here.

Raspberries

By , April 28, 2014

April 28th, 2014

Brazelberry ‘Raspberry Shortcake’!

If you want to grow a raspberry bush but don’t think that you have the space think again. These new dwarf compact variety of Raspberry grows only 2 to 3 feet tall so it is perfect for a pot or container. The next best thing about these great plants is that they are thornless, so they are perfect to grow with children. These Brazel Berry plants would be great for a balcony or patio garden.

For more information about these varieties visit their website here.

Sea Soil

By , March 10, 2014

March 10th, 2014

Re-energize your soil with Sea Soil!

Sea Soil Bag

Does your vegetable or flower garden need some more nutrients for this year? It is recommended that you add compost or manure as well as some fertilizer to your garden every year and there is no better way than with Sea Soil. This OMRI Certified Organic soil is a mixture of composted forest fines and fish which are excellent sources of organic matter and nutrients for your vegetable or flower garden.

To apply Sea Soil to your garden simply spread a 1 to 2 inch layer on the surface of the soil and mix it in with a shovel or garden fork. You can also use Sea Soil as a top dress in your shrub beds. Sea Soil is an excellent soil of Iron and other micronutrients for you Rhododendrons, Azaleas, and other shrubs. If you top dress the soil under your roses with Sea Soil the composted forest fines (Bark) will help to supress fungal spores to prevent black spot or mildew. The layer of bark also helps to retain moisture in the soil to reduce you watering needs.

Really, you just need to put Sea Soil on everything in your garden!

Potato

By , February 27, 2014

February 27th, 2014

Grow Your Own Potatoes!

Potatoes are one of the easiest vegetables to grow yourself. All they require is a nice sunny location in rich fertile soil. You can plant them from March to May and harvest them from July to October. You can grow white, red, and/or yellow varieties that are good for cooking, frying, boiling, or baking.

The Vancouver store has the following varieties; Bintje, Caribe, Cecile, Norland, Pacific Russet, RedPontiac, Warba, and Yukon Gold.

The Surrey store has the following varieties; Bintje, Caribe, Chieftan, Dakota Pearl, Kennebec, Norland, Pacific Russet, Russet Burbank, Warba, Red Pontiac, Sangre, and Yukon Gold. As well as the specialty varieties; Banana, and French Fingerling.

Click here to download our Potato growing brochure with a list of the varieties and descriptions for each of them.

Photos courtesy of W&A Farms http://www.wafarms.ca/

Onions

By , February 24, 2014

February 24th, 2014

Onions are ready to plant!

If you are eager to get growing in your garden the first vegetables are arriving at our stores. One of the earliest vegetables that you can plant are Onions. You can choose from Red, White, and Yellow Onions.

Dried or fresh, raw or cooked, onions are an indispensable ingredient in a variety of soups, salads, breads, and casseroles. Onions are easier to grow than you might think, and they’re a great plant for tucking into spare corners and along the edges of garden beds.

You can choose from Red, Spanish, White, or Yellow onions to grow in your garden this year.

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