|A little dissertation about these seeds (click on the thumbnails for full size photos)
The Bloody Butcher variety of corn was developed in the Virginia's back in the 1840's. Originally a cross between Native American
corn and seed that the settlers brought with them, this variety retains some of the best qualities of both. The large (to 16' tall)
plants are deep rooted giving them resistance to drought and their vigor supports production of two, sometimes three, large ears
of usually red kernals. About 1% of the ears will revert to some of the parentage and produce white and blue jewel-like kernals.
I chose to plant this variety because it is wonderfully flavorful, highly productive, disease and pest resistant, tolerant of drought,
and the red kernals are high in antioxidant anthocyanins. In spite of last year's extremely dry summer I managed to grow a
wonderful crop entirely without irrigation. The seed I started with was provided by one of my neighbors that has had it in his
family for at least 4 generations. We will be growing this as a staple for our food security from now on. The 4 oz. packets for sale
can yield about 200 pounds of grain, and this variety can also be eaten 'on the cob' when it is still young and tender.
We grew a 60' X 60' plot this year and harvested over 400 pounds of grain
without any irrigation in one of the driest years on record.
These large plants require some space - plant at least one foot apart
At a local "Farm to School" event cornbread made from our crop received the comment
"This is the best cornbread I have ever tasted" from at least three adults.
Grandma Keaton's Limas are very near and dear to my heart, as well as being the finest dry beans I have ever seen. Considering
my years as a field representative for a large dry bean grower's co-op in California where I was involved in production of dozens of
types of beans on tens of thousands of acres, that means something! The seed for these beans was given to me three years ago by
a neighbor that knew of our interest in initiating a seed bank of local varieties. He gave me a handful of seeds which had been in
his family since the 1820's and we have been growing them ever since. This bean is somewhat like the more modern 'Christmas
Lima' but has some unique differences. It has much more pigment, and the productive plants grow quite a bit larger. I plant
them in rows 5' apart and place the seed a foot apart down the row. I use a single wire support about 5 feet above the ground to
trellis the vines. This bean would also be well suited as an interplant with Bloody Butcher. If you start the corn two weeks
before planting the beans and place a bean where every fourth corn plant would be then the corn will provide your trellis. The
durable, heavy pod of this bean allows it to be dried on the vine without spoilage, even in our humid climate. When dried, the
pods split very easily and shelling these huge beans is a breeze. This was the first addition to our Seedbank and I want to thank
Kenneth Keaton for so generously providing it to us. Growing this in combination with our Bloody Butcher is the backbone of our
protein food security. The combination of these two items in our diet provide all of the essential amino acids along with being
very high in minerals.
Growing this in combination with Bloody Butcher provides the backbone
of our protein food security.
These deeply rooted beans are also drought resistant and forage deeply for minerals
Can be used as both a fresh lima, or dried for storage.
When soaked and cooked these beans swell to a size larger than a Quarter!
Boone County White Corn James Riley began selection of this variety in 1876 from a popular white variety of the time called
'White Mastodon' in Boone County. This true heirloom has been very popular in the hollows of West Virginia for its incredible
yield and suitability for making wonderful ground corn products. Some ears that we grew were 15 inches long and one ear yielded
3/4 of a pound of kernels.
Grinds to a superb coarse Polenta or a fine flour corn with good texture.
It has taken years for us to grow, test and trial these varieties. We are now ready to share them with you!
There are limited quantities of these seeds. We will be making more of our local Seedbank varieties available later this year.
|All seeds offered here are locally unique
open-pollinated, non-patented, non-GMO seed
varieties grown right here at Berea Gardens.
These selections are truly heirlooms that have
grown in the West Fork Little Kanawha River
Valley for nearly 200 years.
|Price includes shipping & handling. U.S. sales only.
If you choose to order by hand you can download and mail this form:
|Click on photos for larger image