BIG Garden Plans for EMPTY BEDS!

I spent so much time researching the web for info on Ojai vegetable gardening – what to plant, when to plant, etc.? I found a great source of info on which helped a lot, and led me to three seed catalogs:? Seeds of Change, Renee’s Seeds, and Seeds of Italy, as well as some software to help me lay out the beds.? Armed with those three catalogs PLUS Territorial Seed AND Burpee AND Harris Seed AND White Flower Farm (a friend gave me a $200 gift certificate – THANK YOU LORETTA!), I?weighed and guessed and had so much fun picking my seeds!? I think you will see that I chose many things for the color – fun picks like: red scallions, purple carrots, red corn, yellow watermelon, rainbow chard… there is so much irony – picking beets and tomatoes and watermellons that are yellow while picking corn and carrots that are red!

Here is what is on order so far – this will keep me busy!:


  • ?Black Krim (Russia heirloom)
  • Sweet Persimmin (orange flesh heirloom)
  • Costoluto heirloom
  • Marmande (North Italian/French fav heirloom)
  • Chocolate Cherry
  • Razzleberry (gift, I don’t know that I would have found this one)
  • Cherokee Purple Organic heirloom
  • Pineapple?heirloom
  • Yellow Pear Heirloom? (I had tremendous luck with these last year)
  • Red and Yellow Pear Mix
  • Red Lightening Hybrid
  • Japanese Trifele Black Tomato?(looks like an interesting unique one)
  • Brandywine Heirloom


  • Casino
  • Mirai Collection (yellow, white, yellow&white)
  • Maple Sugar Hybrid
  • Ruby Red Queen Hybrid (red edible corn!)


  • Jewel-Toned blend (has Red Sangria, Golden and candy-striped Chioggia beets )
  • Touchstone Gold Hybrid
  • Detroit Dark Red

Asparagus (nervous about these, have not done these before, worried they will take over beds!)

  • Purple passion
  • Jersey Giant


  • Purple Haze Hybrid (purple!? Need I say more?)
  • Tendersnax Hybrid
  • Purple Dragon
  • Red Cored Chantenay


  • Giallo di Cuneo (Yellow pepper from Cuneo)
  • Flavorburst hybrid
  • Sweet Rainbow Mix (every color purple, red, yellow, green, orange)


  • Watermelon?(white with pinkish-purple inside)
  • Confetti Blend

Pea/Sugar Snap Peas (had great luck with these last year too)

  • Super Sugar Snap
  • Super Sugar Snap V.P.
  • Sugar Pod?II


  • Red Delicious hybrid (first time I am doing onions, they might protect the other plants from pests so useful AND edible!)


  • Tokyo Long White Bunch
  • Red Beard


  • Broad London
  • Titan
  • Electra


  • Genovese


  • Lacinato
  • Dinosaur
  • Red Russian


  • ?Bright Lights (from two different sources to compare performance)


  • Whale
  • Olympia
  • Bordeaux?(has red stems)
  • Taste of Asia

Other Greens:

  • Sputnik Arugula
  • Komatsuna
  • Maruba Santoh
  • Mizuna
  • Tatsoi


  • Asian Bride
  • Little Fingers
  • Farmer’s Long
  • Fairy Tale
  • Burpee Hybrid (big dark one)


  • Striato d’Italia – Italian Stripe


  • Barbados Hybrid


  • Brocoverde

Brussel Sprouts

  • Diablo Hybrid
  • Falstaff (red purply ones!)


  • Yellow Doll
  • Tiger Baby
  • New Orchid


  • Sunfower Heaven
  • Organic Mammoth Sunflower

I also am planting Marigolds for pest control and?a Butterfly/Hummingbird/ecology attractant/enhancement seed collection.

I am planting all these using seed starter kits.? Last year I used the Jiffy kits – the seeds mostly BUT they ran into the plastic lid ciling far too soon, so I had to prop things up, very awkward and hurt the greenhouse impact of the setup.? This year I am trying Park Seed’s Double Bio Dome with 80 JUMBO cells;?this setup has somewhat taller plastic lids and comes with seed starter food, which I think sounds beneficial, time will tell!

In addition, throughout the rest of the garden will be our fruit trees, more on that in a future post.

So where to plant all these things?? Using the demo of garden planning software AND armed with a copy of Edward Smith’s “The Vegetable Gardener’s Bible” (the software takes into account crop rotation from season to season but NOT “companion” planting – things like tomatoes like carrots but not pole beans),?I created the tentative garden plan below… This will keep me busy!

Another nice thing about the software – it will tell you WHEN to generally plant indoors/outdoors and harvest what you put in your plan, based on your zip code ?? When my seed packets arrive, I will compare what the software produces to what the seed packets say.? Also nice, I understand that I will get reminder emails from – I haven’t experienced that yet because I just signed up for the trial and finished my plan.
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4 Responses to BIG Garden Plans for EMPTY BEDS!

  1. MikeTheGardenCoach says:

    Nice selection of plants. I would also add 'Sugar Baby' to the list of watermelons. You should have Charentais melons, too. The perfume from one when you open it is magic!

  2. M. Nicole van Dam says:

    I took your advice! Thank You! I have ordered an Alvaro Melon and Sugar Baby ? Can't wait til harvest time – anticipation!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Yum! Many of my Faves!

    A word regarding Kale: Lacinato is long, flat and bumpy, and that's why it's aka "Dinosaur". The flat leaf variety is easier to clean than the curly. (Did you realize that it's on your list 2X?)

    Would also suggest a delicata for a Winter Squash (hard rind) for next season. Lovely sweet, orange-fleshed cooking squash.


    P.S. – What, no Dragonfruit?!?!

  4. Nicole says:

    Wow – what great information – THANK YOU! The site is new to me – wonderful, and I am adding the Dragonfruit and Winter Squash to my list! THANK YOU!

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