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 - February

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.

BROCCOLI WALTHAM ORGANIC

ORGANIC! First grown in Waltham,Massachusetts, this popular Farmers' Market variety forms large heads. Pick side shoots for up to 3 months. Yields more than 1kg per plant.

CABBAGE JANUARY KING

A striking semi-savoy variety that wraps itself in shades of turquoise, pink, blue and green leaves. Known as `Chou de Milan de Pontoise' in France, this English heirloom dates back to 1867. Prefers a little shade. Heads of up to 6.5kg.

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 17 weeks.

CORIANDER ORGANIC

Looking light and gauzy in the garden, coriander grows rapidly in the cooler months. Eat the leaves fresh, dry-fry the seeds and use the roots for that nuance of Thailand in a stir-fry or curry.

KALE RED RUSSIAN

Winner of our spring 2015 kale taste tests! The tender blue-green leaves are blushed with purple and were the stand out winners in our steamed and raw taste tests. If you are looking to add a new superfood to your list then this is the one for you. Frost improves flavour.

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.

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.

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.

warm Climate - February

CABBAGE MINI WOMBOK

A baby Chinese cabbage with crisp, almost white heads to use in salads, stir-fries or pickled for kimchi. Best grown with plenty of water and in rich soil for optimal results. Be sure to keep the slugs and snails away as they like it as much as we do. Quicker to harvest than other cabbages.

RADISH HEIRLOOM MIX

A kaleidescope of healthy bright round radishes that add a spicy punch to salads and sandwiches. Includes golden Helios, Purple Plum, scarlet Round Red, pink and white Watermelon and Black Spanish.

BEETROOT GLOBE ORGANIC

The most popular of sweet roots for roasting or pickling. 80 gram roots at 8 week harvest.

PEA SNOW CLIMBING

Crisp, sweet pea pods to stir-fry, steam or eat raw. Yields 200g per plant.

SILVERBEET COLOURED CULINARY MIX ORGANIC

This 'NEW' collection has been specifically selected from our 2017 trials as the ultimate mix for the home gourmet. With large flat leaves for ease of preparation, this is bound to be your go to green.

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.

LETTUCE AUSTRALIAN YELLOW LEAF

We are proud to be a part of the re-introduction of this Australian heirloom. Unique lime-yellow leaves are a favourite amongst Diggers staff. Beautiful in the garden and on the plate.

LEEK KING RICHARD

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'.

BROCCOLI PURPLE SPROUTING

The ultimate cut and come gain vegetable, this broccoli keeps on producing for months. Delicious, full of antioxidants and visually spectacular with its wondrous spires of deep purple florets. Harvest in 10 weeks from transplant, yields 1kg per plant.

hot Climate - February

BROCCOLI PURPLE SPROUTING

The ultimate cut and come gain vegetable, this broccoli keeps on producing for months. Delicious, full of antioxidants and visually spectacular with its wondrous spires of deep purple florets. Harvest in 10 weeks from transplant, yields 1kg per plant.

BASIL SWEET 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.

CARROT PARIS MARKET ORGANIC

A wonderful 19th C French heirloom variety with unusual globe shaped roots. These small round carrots are versatile for the home gardener, growing well in pots, shallow soil and heavy clay. Best eaten when young at a diameter of 5cm.

CARROT PURPLE DRAGON

First recorded in Spain around 1100 AD, the original Afghan three-coloured carrot was grown in the Middle East for many years before this, it is in- fact the antecedent of the more familiar orange carrot. The rich violet coloured skin holds a bounty of antioxidant anthocyanins, whilst the orange core is abundant with carotene. Colourful plate appeal, powerful nutritional composition and simple growing requirements make the Purple Carrot a home garden essential.

BROCCOLI KAILAAN

Long succulent stems topped with compact broccoli heads that open to white flowers. All parts, even the leaves, are good eating. The taste is sweet to start, then the mustard flavour comes through. Excellent steamed, in stir-fries and laksas. Can be planted close together as its upright narrow habit grows well en masse.

SWEET CORN TRUE GOLD

Traditional, open pollinated corn is getting harder to find as sweeter hybrids become more popular. Don't be deterred - this is corn as it should be - crisp, buttery and true corn flavour.

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 dried for popping. Otherwise it can be grown purely to enjoy the rich tapestry of colours found in every cob.

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Dahlias

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Melons

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Microgreens

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Camilla Lazzar on this 'lost crop of the Incas'

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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

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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.
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