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Ready, Set, Sow


The arrival of my seed order last week was comparable to Christmas at our house this year. My excitement was extreme, so much so that I could barely open the package. With my hands shaking in anticipation, I carefully sifted through the packets, daydreaming about a bumper crop of dill and green beans.

Last spring, on the Dara & Co blog, I covered the basics of sowing heirloom seeds, why they’re important, and where to obtain them. I still stand by what I said a year ago. Aside from the charm, the world of heirloom growing is still fascinating. It's exciting to be growing flowers, vegetables, and herbs that contribute to biodiversity.

Perhaps one of my most interesting “finds” this spring is the Monticello Kitchen Garden Sampler—White House Edition seed collection. Inspired by the new Thomas Jefferson garden at the White House, this seed sampler gives you a chance to plant seeds that are growing in the White House garden, and were among Jefferson’s favorites from his original kitchen garden, including: Tennis-ball Lettuce, Prickly-seeded Spinach, Red Calico Lima Beans, Sesame, Globe Artichoke, and Early Jersey Wakefield Cabbage.

Ordering heirloom seeds online from Monticello or Seed Savers is a breeze these days, but perhaps you’d like to support a local business or talk shop with other local gardeners. There are several shops throughout Minnesota that are seed rack locations for Seed Savers, a non-profit organization of gardeners dedicated to saving and sharing heirloom seeds. Seed Savers’ seed packets available at local shops give you the basic information you need in order to plant and grow everything from rows of heirloom tomatoes to rainbows of snapdragons.

Check out this list of Seed Savers seed rack locations in Minnesota:

Albert Lea Seed House
1414 West Main St.
Albert Lea, MN 56007
Phone: (800) 352-5247

Cook Country Coop
20 East First St.
PO Box 1433
Grand Marais, MN 55604
Phone: (218) 387-2503

Seward Coop
2823 E Franklin Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55406
Phone: (612) 338-2465

Moms Food Co-op
122 N Buchanan St.
Cambridge, MN 55008

East Side Food Co-op
2551 Central Ave. NE
Minneapolis, MN 55418
Phone: (612) 788-0950

Mississippi Market
1500 W. 7th St.
St. Paul, MN 55102
Phone: (651) 690-0507

Bluff County Co-op
121 W. 2nd St.
Winona, MN 55987
Phone: (507) 452-1815

Bob & Judy's Farm Market
18366 County Road 14
Big Lake, MN 55309
Phone: (763) 263-1171

Linden Hills Co-op
3815 Sunnyside Ave.
Minneapolis, MN 55410
Phone: (612) 922-1159

Sailers Greenhouse
17011 Sunset Ave.
Shakopee, MN 55379
Phone: (952) 403-0630

Mississippi Market
1810 Randolph Ave.
Saint Paul, MN 55105

Mother Earth Gardens
3738 42nd Ave. S.
Minneapolis, MN 55406
Phone: (612) 724-2296

Drummers Garden Center
281 Saint Andrews Dr.
Mankato, MN 56001
Phone: (507)388-4877

Linders Garden Center
270 W. Larpenteur Ave.
Saint Paul, MN 55113
Phone: (651) 488-1927

Hillside Greenhouse
1934 4th Ave.
Windom, MN 56101
Phone: (507) 832-8300

Rainbow Food Coop
103 S. Main St.
Blue Earth, MN 56013
Phone: (507) 526-3603

Abrahamson Nurseries
20021 St. Croix Trail N.
Scandia, MN 55073
Phone: (651) 433-2431

Amelia's Flower & Garden Shoppe
910 W 36th St.
Minneapolis, MN 55408
Phone: (612) 208-1205


Eggplant Urban Farm Supply
1771 Selby Ave.
Saint Paul, MN 55104
Phone: (651) 645-0818

Greenwood Plants
6904 NW 18th Ave.
Rochester, MN 55901
Phone: (507) 282-1988

Delano True Value
1005 Crossings Dr.
Delano, MN 55328
Phone: (763) 972-7272

Natures Nest Farm
5412 Brighton Ave. SE
Montrose, MN 55363
Phone: (612) 759-1478

Just Food Coop
516 S Water St.
Northfield, MN 55057
Phone: (507) 645-7415

University of MN Lanscape Arboritum
3685 Arboretum Dr.
Chaska, MN 55318
Phone: (952) 443-1403

2571 Credit Union Dr.
Prior Lake, MN 55372
Phone: (952)233-9142

Kingsley Mercantile
2 Main Ave. N.
Harmony, MN 55939
Phone: (507)886-2323


Need a little information about how to sow your seeds once you have them? The University of Minnesota Extension Service has loads of information that will help you sow your seeds inside. Have some great tips for sowing seeds in a drafty Minnesota kitchen or living room? Please share!

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Minnesota Monthly's Taste Blog answers your restaurant and dining questions, dishes on latest discoveries, reflects on breaking news, and generally brings the plate to the page with a skilled crew of experts: Learn more about the Taste bloggers.

Have a food-related question? Email rhutton@mnmo.com

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