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3 Lessons We Learned in 2018

2018 ginger tomatoes Dec 28, 2018

We learn so much with each day, each season. We've grown immeasurably in 2018, both in the fields and in our visions. Here are three lessons helping us grow the most, both in joy and in trial. I share them, hoping they surround you with beauty and abundance both in and beyond your garden :)

1. You can grow glorious ginger in the Northeast without a high tunnel.

It's true: you can grow gorgeous ginger right in your backyard.

We're constantly experimenting, pushing the envelope of what can be grown in our climate. For years our market gardener friends have grown ginger enthusiastically in their greenhouses and high tunnels, but here's the thing: both Matthew and I grew up gardening and are deeply motivated to share seeds and techniques that every home gardener can enjoy. After much experimentation, we're totally confident you can grow impressive ginger without all the frills. Stay tuned! We'll be sharing organic rhizomes for you to grow your own as well as everything we've learned :)

2. We love growing F1 Hybrid tomato seed for you.

It is not easy. It takes a TON of time and expertise. And Friends, it is SO worth it. 

First, let me share: I'm slowly recovering from the first three decades of my life when I actively disliked F1 Hybrids and their sources. (Which is an entire story unto itself, soon to be shared.) In the meantime, know that I've come to appreciate, even love F1 Hybrids. Not all --- in fact, not most --- but those F1s remaining unpatented which fill an immense gap in our food system. I never would have guessed it five years ago, but we, in fact, share two such F1 Hybrids.

Our Brandywine and Summer's Sweetheart tomatoes are the only two F1 Hybrids we offer and Friends, they have the greatest resistance to late blight, early blight and septoria leaf spot of all our tomatoes. They're also DELICIOUS. Here is Brandywise:

You've most likely noticed: Most F1 Hybrid seed is quite expensive compared to open-pollinated and heirloom varieties. Ironically, most F1 Hybrid seeds are produced in developing nations where labor is profoundly underpaid. 

Fruition Seeds is honored to this work ourselves, on our farm.

Though we've failed a great deal, we're finally learning how to grow our own tomato F1 hybrids consistently. They require hundreds of additional hours of labor and the process is quite detailed (see our video above). It brings us great satisfaction to do this work ourselves and to share this seed with you, so you can grow your tomatoes and eat them, too :)

3. Just like our seeds, we cultivate our team to thrive, to live into their greatest potential and when the time comes, let go.

Here's the hard one, Friends. We know we grow seeds to send away, to share with the countless people who care enough to source their seeds from organic, regional growers. When people ask us if we have children, Matthew and I will laugh and respond, 'Yes! And we have millions of great, great grandchildren!' 

Sharing our dear friends and trusted employees with the wider world? Now that is something we're only just beginning to learn. 

Five years ago, Dandy Rich came to Fruition with extraordinary passion, notable skills and a sense of the world we absolutely fell in love with. If you've enjoyed chatting with us at our Flower Shows, you've likely met Dandy. If you've noticed how exquisitely well our seeds germinate, you've Dandy to thank. Over the years, she's come to manage our greenhouse and our fields while making us all smile and feel appreciated. Like watching our Habanadas flourish and thrive, growing with Dandy's contagious care and joy has exceeded our wildest expectations of who we are, what we're doing and how we do what we do, and why. 

As Dandy now departs for her next adventure, we miss and live into her legacy in equal measure. We are so proud. We are also sad. But mostly: We are just so darn grateful to be a part of her breathtaking becoming and thrilled to support her chapters unfolding. 

If you want a ball to bounce, a seed to grow, a friend to become: Let them go.

And trust the adventure has only just begun :)

Friends, as 2019 arrives on your doorstep, what are the key lessons you've learned in the last year? How will you garden differently, live differently, love differently in the coming seasons?

We're grateful to share it all with you!

Sow Seeds & Sing Songs,


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