Top Ten Picks for Farmers’ Market Growers

Check out these varieties to meet customer demand!

Sakata Home Grown is here to help! We are on the lookout for great tasting, unique varieties that customers will love. Sakata runs trials in many parts of the country to screen for early maturity, disease resistance and productivity.

by Heather Kibble and Tracy Lee

Farmers’ market and vegetable stand shoppers are a persnickety crowd. They seek out the freshest, best tasting produce. They love to eat in-season and will spend extra time meeting growers, learning about new vegetables and swapping recipes with other shoppers. It takes a special kind of grower to serve these shoppers – offering the quality and variety they demand.

Please check out our on-line product listings and distributor list for more information.

Here are 10 varieties we know growers and shoppers will love:

  • Toad Pumpkin – This small, semi-hard shell variety is early maturing, yields a high number of tear-drop-shaped fruit on bush-type plants and has nice embedded handles. Toad’s bright orange color and multiple bumps and warts truly give it unique character. Perfect for holiday decorating!
  • Orange You Sweet, Right On Red & Yes To Yellow Hungarian Cheese Peppers Trio – This fun series is very early maturing (65-68 days from transplant) yet sets continuous high yields. Peppers hang like ornaments on top of full, 18-24 inch plants. Fruits are flattened and round, with flutes around the stem end, and have thick walls. The plants are suitable for garden or container growing and the harvests are well suited for stuffing or pickling.
  • The Wrinkles Family of Pumpkins– Our unique, wrinkled/crinkled pumpkins come in three sizes- Mr. Wrinkles F1 weighs 20-30 pounds, Mrs. Wrinkles F1 weighs 14-18 pounds and Baby Wrinkles F1 weighs 5-7 pounds.  All three mature in about 100 days and have deep orange skin and sturdy green handles.
  • Sweet Gold Tomato– Our popular yellow/gold cherry is sweet in flavor and has early maturity (about 62 days from transplant).  Plants are prolific and indeterminate so they can be harvested over a longer window. Pairs nicely with our Sweet Million cherry for red/yellow mixes. Resistant to Fusarium Wilt, race 1 and Tomato Mosaic virus race 0, 1.
  • Z’Oro Squash – This early-maturing zucchini has uniformly colored, rich yellow fruits with bright green stems. The blocky, cylindrical fruits are extremely straight, with no bulbing and very little curving. It is a prolific yielder with rare greening at the spine or blossom end. Well adapted to all growing areas, the vigorous plants produce fruits that are 7 inches long and 1.5 inches in diameter in about 45 days from seeding.
  • Tasty Green Cucumber – Sakata’s most popular burpless cucumber and a home garden industry standard. Exterior is dark green with shallow ridges and small white spines, while interior is crisp and white. Fruit grows to about 9 in. long and 1.5 in. in diameter and has tender skin and a nice mild flavor. Resistant to powdery mildew and intermediately resistant to downy mildew. Also suited for greenhouse culture.
  • Aspabroc  Baby Broccoli – Newly available as seed to home gardeners! Known as Broccolini® in the produce section of your grocery store and on restaurant menus, Aspabroc resembles a broccoli raab with an asparagus stem, and offers a mild taste. Aspabroc is easy to grow and requires little space. First maturity of the central shoots is 50-60 days from transplant. Plants will set 3-5 side shoots shortly thereafter and continue for about four weeks in mild weather.
  • Santo Cilantro– Growing cilantro is all about bolt-tolerance and Santo has it.  Santo is a fast-growing, yet remarkably slow-bolting, strain. A uniform selection with broad, highly aromatic leaves that are sturdier than standard strains. Multiple cuts can be made under long days. Use the leaves as the herb cilantro and harvest the seeds for the spice coriander.
  • Peppermint Swiss Chard – Peppermint is the only chard with two-toned stems. Highly ornamental plants boast pure white petioles with vibrant pink streaks topped by dark green, glossy leaves. Peppermint matures in 58-63 days from seeding and shows very high resistance to bolting. It is a great choice for specialty produce or mixed with ornamentals and performs well across multiple seasons.
  • Red Pride Tomato – This short-stake determinate tomato is a consistent performer and is ideal for the Eastern U.S., particularly the Northeast. It produces good flavored, large, deep oblate fruit with a good blossom end and strong red color. Red Pride has a relatively late maturity on strong, vigorous plants with good foliar disease resistance.

This list is just a snapshot of what we offer. Please check out our on-line product listings and distributor list for more information.