Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds: Serving Petaluma and Beyond


ols Seedbank location 

Even if you are only dabbling in vegetable gardening, stepping into the Petaluma branch of Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds is bliss. Not only do they have over 1,800 varieties of heirloom seeds, but they also have well-trained personnel on hand to advise customers.  If you love heirloom tomatoes, you’ll find over 60 types to select. Grains, gourds, and green beans are in stock with exotic names and colors galore. Varieties of carrots, corn and cucumbers are also stocked in numbers seldom seen.

Ellyn Mavalwalla is the manager and is often the person who will help you out at the store. Ellyn and her knowledgeable staff are happy to guide you to the best seeds based on your specific growing conditions. Maybe you have raised beds and want to know which crops are best suited for this growing medium? Might you be starting your first large-scale backyard in-the-ground crops and need advice? If you live in a drought-affected region, the staff can recommend seeds like the Art Combe’s Ancient watermelon. This easy to grow melon was found by Art while prospecting around the Mogollon Rim. The seeds were in a small woven pot in a cave and are thought to be hundreds of years old! When Art planted the seeds just a few germinated, but it was enough to start banking seeds to bring this heirloom back to the people.

At the Seed Bank, you’ll hear fascinating stories about other exciting heirloom varieties. Take for example the Mortgage Lifter tomato. This strain of one pound pink delights proved so popular the developer, M.C. Byles was able to pay off his home back in the 1940s from the profits he made from selling loads of this new variety. Some varieties of tomatoes can be gorgeous and tasty too. Brad’s Atomic Grape is a stunning tomato that produces a mixture of red, blue, yellow, and orange colored fruit that holds well on or off the vine. I Bet, your neighbors, don’t have this one!

There’s only so much information that can be printed on seed packets. When you go to the Seed Bank, one of the staff members can explain the nuances of properly planting lettuce seeds. Lettuce seeds are so tiny, a gust of wind can blow your whole crop away to a neighbor’s yard if not sown correctly.  It’s essential to get expert advice for optimum success in your garden. In this day-and-age of big-box stores selling gardening supplies, it’s tough to get accurate information on planting, care, and harvesting your crops from the big-box store’s barely trained workers. The staff at Baker Creek’s Seed Bank are experts and there to make your garden a success.

Seedbank interior

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