Exploring outside heirloom seeds

Posted by Erin Colborn on

 The focus at Green Witch Seeds has always been on open pollination and heirloom seeds. In the background we're always playing around with hybrids and attempting localized landrace strains. 

 When it comes to locally adapted varieties you cant beat land race cultivars. We've had some progeny with a third of the water demands and twice the harvest crossing about a dozen english cultivars with four old coloured North American varieties.

One of the most beautiful sunflowers we've developed is a cross between an indeterminate amount of varieties. Its a self sower, resembles mones but with more burgundy hues typically grows to 6-10' tall, is the most frost and drought tolerant and a prolific seed producer. Were still working on a name for it. 

Pea's, sunflowers and tomatos have been our main focus in this space the last few years. This year if the extra space comes through we hope to also be doing larger trials of cucumbers, corn, spinach and a few herbs. 

 Joesph Lofthouse is who we consider our biggest influence when it comes to this area of our work. His work with watermelons and squash in particular is fascinating and we highly recommend looking into his work. One thing we noticed in our land racing experiment that seems consistent with his is the superior taste and hardiness of yellow fleshed watermelons.

In the future we plan to start releasing some of our land race seeds, either through Green Witch Seeds itself or through a small side project we currently have in the works.