Seed Sowing (Vegetables)

Easy steps for growing from seed with Evette Jungwirth

Get back to basics and plant your own heirloom seeds!

Step 1

Sow the seed directly into the soil.

Step 2

Push into the soil to twice the depth of the seed.

Step 3

Water in well, then keep the soil moist to touch until the seedling emerges.  This can take 1-3 weeks depending on the variety.

Step 4

Protect young seedlings from pests such as slugs and snails. Water and fertilise when necessary.

Growing from seeds is one of the biggest joys of gardening and here at Diggers we encourage everyone to give it a go.

Many varieties do much better if you sow from seed rather than transplant a seedling.  The following fruits and vegies should always be grown from seed:

♦    BEANS
♦    BEETROOT
♦    CARROT
♦    CORN
♦    FENNEL
♦    PARSNIP
♦    PEAS
♦    PUMPKIN
♦    RADISH
♦    ROCKMELON
♦    SILVERBEET
♦    TURNIP
♦    WATERMELON
♦    ZUCCHINI

cool Climate - January

LETTUCE HEIRLOOM MIX

A splendid mix of some of our favourite heirloom lettuces that bring colour and flavour from the garden to the table. Includes Tennis Ball, Rouge d'Hiver, Freckles, Tango and Red Leprechaun.

CORN 'HONEY AND CREAM' F1

So sweet it doesn't need cooking, with plump yellow and white kernels. Harvest in 12 weeks. Sow >20 C soil temperature.

PARSNIP 'HOLLOW CROWN'

A smooth skinned variety that has been a favourite since the 1820's. The flavour improves if stored in the soil over winter. Sow in spring in cold climates and in autumn in warmer climates.

PAK CHOY ORGANIC

Thick, curved succulent leaves are a must for stir-fries and Asian soups. Grow quickly in a rich, moist soil to harvest in about 8 weeks. Yields 110g per plant.

BRUSSELS SPROUTS 'RUBY'

Buttons of burgundy-red nutty sprouts with lavender-blue leaves. These sprouts turn an intriguing caviar-black when cooked.

CAULIFLOWER 'SICILY PURPLE'

A colourful Italian heirloom with brilliant purple heads and a mild, sweet flavour. The head cooks to green, but tastes great fresh from the garden. Less appealing to brassica pests. Harvest at 25 weeks.

SPRING ONION 'RED'

Brilliant crimson bulbs rich in antioxidants. Will grow into bulbs that can be used like shallots if left in the ground, or pick the green stems early and use as you would regular spring onions.

CABBAGE 'MINI'

Our fastest forming cabbage and best seller!Ideal for raised garden beds, mini-plots and small gardens, this fast-growing, small cabbage forms neat, crisp heads when planted 20cm apart and is ready to harvest in just 18 weeks. Slow to bolt, plant at 50cm spacings for larger 1.3kg heads.

BEETROOT 'CHIOGGIA'

Concentrically eccentric, this was traditionally grown just outside of Venice where it has been part of the cusine since 1538. 60 gram roots at 8 week harvest.

SILVERBEET FIVE COLOUR MIX ORGANIC

Dazzling, colourful and extremely nutritious. Midribs of red, orange, yellow, pink or white make this the perfect fountaining accent plant for any flower or vegetable garden. Listed in Vilmorin's Vegetable Garden 1888, and also called Rainbow Chard we grew this for its re-introduction into the US for What's Old is New, where it became a best seller and a signature plant for heirlooms.

BROCCOLI 'ROMANESCO' ORGANIC

A true geometric wonder of the heirloom world. These beautiful lime-green broccoli heads have a delicate flavour and feature a unique spiralling pattern. Ready to harvest 10-14 weeks from transplant. Heads grow up to 1kg. Does not produce side-shoots.

CARROT HEIRLOOM MIX

An exclusive Digger's mix exploding with colours from red to white and purple to yellow. Succulent and sweet, these carrots hold their colour when cooked, adding an exciting dimension to meals and salads.

RADISH 'PINK LADY SLIPPER'

Pink Lady Slipper is a charming yet robust addition to our radish offerings. Its crisp texture and mild pungency made it a taste test winner. The roots are an attractive pink colour, elongated with a blunt tip and slender taproot. In addition, this radish maintains its crisp texture and mild flavor for a stunning 40+ days from sowing! Matures in 30 to 34 days.

LEEK 'KING RICHARD' ORGANIC

ORGANIC! Richard: The King of Leeks! An excellent early variety, producing extra- long shanks that are easy to clean and uniform. A cook's favourite. Harvest early as `baby leeks'.

warm Climate - January

CALENDULA 'GREEN HEART ORANGE'

Named from the Latin 'Kalenade' (the first day of the month) because it can be in flower every day of the year bring brilliant orange brightness to the garden in the darkest of seasons. So willingly do they grow that they barely need sowing. Elizabethans called it marigold before Mexico was discovered, which then, became the source of popular modern marigolds. Beneficial with medical and culinary properties, like many gardeners, this flower is too `green at heart'.

CARROT HEIRLOOM MIX

An exclusive Digger's mix exploding with colours from red to white and purple to yellow. Succulent and sweet, these carrots hold their colour when cooked, adding an exciting dimension to meals and salads.

SPRING ONION 'EVERGREEN' ORGANIC

A versatile easy to grow vegie that can be used in a range of dishes from salads to stir fries. They add a touch of heat without making your eyes water like their other onion cousins.

CAULIFLOWER 'SICILY PURPLE'

A colourful Italian heirloom with brilliant purple heads and a mild, sweet flavour. The head cooks to green, but tastes great fresh from the garden. Less appealing to brassica pests. Harvest at 25 weeks.

PARSNIP 'HOLLOW CROWN'

A smooth skinned variety that has been a favourite since the 1820's. The flavour improves if stored in the soil over winter. Sow in spring in cold climates and in autumn in warmer climates.

BRUSSELS SPROUTS 'RUBY'

Buttons of burgundy-red nutty sprouts with lavender-blue leaves. These sprouts turn an intriguing caviar-black when cooked.

BROCCOLI 'ROMANESCO' ORGANIC

A true geometric wonder of the heirloom world. These beautiful lime-green broccoli heads have a delicate flavour and feature a unique spiralling pattern. Ready to harvest 10-14 weeks from transplant. Heads grow up to 1kg. Does not produce side-shoots.

BEETROOT 'CHIOGGIA'

Concentrically eccentric, this was traditionally grown just outside of Venice where it has been part of the cusine since 1538. 60 gram roots at 8 week harvest.

CABBAGE 'RED DRUMHEAD'

Magnificently ornamental, the blue leaves and red, round head are a spellbinding colour combination in the vegetable garden. Loaded with antioxidants, it's ideal for slaw, fermentation or a light braising with apple. Suitable for warmer sowings because of improved resistant to caterpillars. Heads of 3.3kg.

LETTUCE HEIRLOOM MIX

A splendid mix of some of our favourite heirloom lettuces that bring colour and flavour from the garden to the table. Includes Tennis Ball, Rouge d'Hiver, Freckles, Tango and Red Leprechaun.

LEEK 'KING RICHARD' ORGANIC

ORGANIC! Richard: The King of Leeks! An excellent early variety, producing extra- long shanks that are easy to clean and uniform. A cook's favourite. Harvest early as `baby leeks'.

RADISH 'PINK LADY SLIPPER'

Pink Lady Slipper is a charming yet robust addition to our radish offerings. Its crisp texture and mild pungency made it a taste test winner. The roots are an attractive pink colour, elongated with a blunt tip and slender taproot. In addition, this radish maintains its crisp texture and mild flavor for a stunning 40+ days from sowing! Matures in 30 to 34 days.

SILVERBEET FIVE COLOUR MIX ORGANIC

Dazzling, colourful and extremely nutritious. Midribs of red, orange, yellow, pink or white make this the perfect fountaining accent plant for any flower or vegetable garden. Listed in Vilmorin's Vegetable Garden 1888, and also called Rainbow Chard we grew this for its re-introduction into the US for What's Old is New, where it became a best seller and a signature plant for heirlooms.

hot Climate - January

CORN 'PAINTED MOUNTAIN' ORGANIC

Saved from extinction by Montana farmer, Dave Christensen, the original strains of this ancient corn were believed to be widely cultivated by native Indians and early American settlers. Painted Mountain is very cold hardy and can be ground for flour or grown purely to enjoy the rich tapestry of colours found in every cob.

CORN 'BABY' F1

For Baby Corn, harvest continuously before the silks appear and grow up to 6 cobs per plant. Fresh baby corn is the most delicate of delicacies and makes sophisticated stir-fries. Never put up with the tinned variety again. For Popcorn, simply leave the cobs on the plant to mature, then dry the kernels.

SWEET BASIL ORGANIC

This is the true basil favoured by continental cooks. Grow half a dozen plants and you will have enough to pick fresh all summer plus make pesto that you can freeze for quick pasta dishes in the winter.

MUSTARD 'GIANT RED'

For those that like it hot. The huge bronze-green leaves with striking white midribs add structure to the vegetable garden. A first rate, quick growing ornamental. Spice up stir-fries or flavour sandwiches- whatever you do it is sure to add a zing. Harvest when young for salads as it gets hotter with age.

THAI BASIL

The best basil for bringing that fresh anise flavour to Asian dishes such as Thai green curries and Vietnamese soups. Shiny green leaves contrast with the dark purple stems and flowers making this an attractive addition to the summer garden.

CORN 'HONEY AND CREAM' F1

So sweet it doesn't need cooking, with plump yellow and white kernels. Harvest in 12 weeks. Sow >20 C soil temperature.

MIZUNA 'RED AND LIME STREAKS' ORGANIC

This vibrant two tone mix has lime green and deep red delicate feathery leaves that add a spicy tang to garden salads. Sow frequently to keep up a supply of young leaves with a distinct mustard taste. Pick in just 4 weeks.

More

Asparagus

The low-down on asparagus by Camilla Lazzar

Avocado

Growing and harvesting avocado by Clive Blazey

Blueberries

The basics on blueberries with Julie Willis

Bulbs

Julie Willis shares the simplicity of planting bulbs

Citrus

Marcus Ryan shares his tips on growing citrus trees

Dahlias

Growing and caring for dahlias with Camilla Lazzar

Dragon Fruit

Jamie Alcock's tips on growing this exotic fruit

Espalier Training

Julie Willis tells us how to espalier fruit trees

Garlic

Camilla Lazzar's hints on growing and harvesting garlic

Melons

Melon varieties and how to grow them with Julie Willis

Microgreens

Tim Sansom's 5 key points on growing microgreens

Oca (New Zealand Yam)

Camilla Lazzar on this 'lost crop of the Incas'

Potatoes

Camilla Lazzar on growing the humble spud!

Seed Sowing (Wildflowers)

Easy steps for growing from seed with Evette Jungwirth

Seedling Care

Tim Sansom gets you started with your spring mini-seedlings

Strawberries

Julie Willis' hints on growing strawberries

Sweet Potato

Camilla Lazzar's planting, growing and harvesting tips

Tea

Totally tea with Julie Willis

Three Sisters Companion Planting

Our Seed Manager, Evette, explains this ancient companion planting method.

Tomatoes

Growing tomato tips from The Diggers team

Tree Planting

Bill Bampton shows us how to give trees a good start in the garden

Vegie Garden Basics

Creating a vegie garden from scratch with Julie Willis

Related Authors

Evette Jungwirth

Evette is a passionate backyard gardener and has been a Diggers Botanical Guide. Over the years she has also headed up the Heronswood Garden Shop, plus our plant, seed and bulb departments, giving her a wealth of knowledge to share with members.
Back To Top
Member Exclusives
ECHINOPS 'PLATINUM BLUE'
ECHINOPS 'PLATINUM BLUE'
PLANTS: PECPB
Striking blue balls sit atop sturdy platinum stems to create a dramatic contrast in the garden. Mass plant in drifts for maximum impact. Flowers prolifically over the summer months. Also an excellent cut flower. Two tone foliage provides interest when not in flower.
Member $12.95
Checking stock, please wait..
LAVENDER 'GROSSO'
LAVENDER 'GROSSO'
PLANTS: PLAEG
The most fragrant of all the lavenders, 'Grosso' produces an abundance of violet-blue spikes with a high oil content. This is the classic lavender for perfume, decorating the French countryside where it is farmed en masse. 'Grosso' is heat, drought and frost tolerant and adored by bees.
Member $6.95
Checking stock, please wait..
2yr membership +FREE vegie seeds
2yr membership +FREE vegie seeds
Membership: MNE2VS
Grow the best tasting vegies with free Beetroot'Bulls blood', Carrot 'St Valery', Broccoli 'Romanesco' and Silverbeet 'Fordhook' seeds (one packet of each, valued at $21).
Member $79.00
Non-Member $79.00
Checking stock, please wait..