Edibles For Indies
Chris Beytes, Bill Calkins, Jennifer Zurko & Osvaldo Cuevas
They had a handful of new ones: Chaak habanero, Megatron hot jalapeño and Lone Ranger serrano. Chaak is a compact variety that’s two weeks earlier than most habaneros, while Megatron is early—only 65 days from transplant. Lone Ranger’s claim to fame is the size of the fruit—5- to 6-in. long. It’s a lighter green and milder.
Collard Top Chop
This variety has large leaves and small stems, resulting in more leafy bang for the buck in the kitchen.
Pepper Spinning Tops
Spinning Tops offers 30,000 Scovilles of sweat-inducing heat in a shape that looks like a toy top. This plant boasts huge yields, as well.
Tomato Blushing Star
An indeterminate, beefsteak-type tomato that has more of a pink skin and flesh. It’s late blight and septoria leaf spot resistant.
Rosemary Green Ginger
This rosemary variety truly has a ginger-like fragrance and flavor!
Sakata had three new broccolis with days to maturity that cover the entire season, from Kingdom (70 to 75 days) to Dynasty (80 to 85) to Empire (90 to 95).
Tomato Laguna, Red Rambler, Thunderbird
Three new determinate types: Laguna grows well in cooler conditions; Rambler has “huge” fruit with great flavor, they say; and Thunderbird sets fruit in the heat. All three come with solid disease packages, as well as flavor.
A sweet type that’s the first standard size pepper in the HandPicked Vegetables collection. It’s a yellow pepper, but you can pick it when it’s green. It’s resistant to Race 1 to 3 bacterial leaf spot and is ideal for summer production in the northern U.S. and winter in the south.
An unusual herb (well, unusual to us because we had never heard of it) that had a very minty flavor. What’s great about this herb is it gets covered with little white flowers and loves cold conditions. That’s because ziziphora is found in the mountains of Israel, apparently—even thriving under snow!
Peppers from Heaven
These cascading hanging basket snack peppers are named Peppers From Heaven because you reach up toward the heavens to harvest them. The sweet pepper series includes Yellow, Red and Orange.
Aleppo is a Middle Eastern-type with thin walls that’s normally dried and ground. It’s said to have a rich, complex flavor and 10,000 Scovilles of heat.
Tomato Sun Dipper
A small-fruited tomato with a very unique shape. We thought it looked like a ladle with a handle, which makes it perfect to scoop dip out of a bowl. Or maybe a bowling pin …? Either way, it’s cool.
Kale Rainbow Candy Crush
New this year was something well outside Prudac’s typical compact tomatoes and peppers: a kale with the kid-friendly name Rainbow Candy Crush. It can be grown in a large pot or the veggie garden bed, and the purple tones in the leaves become more pronounced in cooler temperatures. Perhaps consumers can get their kids to eat kale with a name like that! GP