Better Than Snowballs: Great information

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Better Than Snowballs

By farmerdill
January 7, 2014

When I was young, the winter months were quite dreary. Food was minimal during the depression and was mostly dried beans and canned fruits, as well as vegetables and root crops stored in the ground. Fresh vegetables were rare and coveted. In Piedmont Virginia at that time, that meant kale, rape, parsnips and white mustard. I despised parsnips, and still do to this day. Dad would look me straight in the eye and say: “Better than snowballs when you are hungry."

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Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Jan 6, 2014 6:29 PM CST
I have heard of rape before but wasn't aware it was used for anything beside oil. If you plant it, are you able. To find nonGMO seeds for it or am I confusing it with canola?

I hated parsnips as a child as well but now I love them roasted with other root crops. I'm sure you didn't like it when your dad said that to you, but oh so true!

And I never thought I would like turnips, but same thing, love em roasted! Now kale, bleckkkkkk! I just cannot eat it except in the potato sausage soup at Olive Garden. Wish I could because I know it is good for you.
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Jan 6, 2014 6:52 PM CST
Okay, so I'm putting together my seed orders for 2014 and I do want to try Round Red turnip. Found it at Fedco and was going to get $4.00 worth until I see the $5.00 handling charge for orders under $30. I just cannot justify that.

I found the Willet's Wonder at Victory Seeds but I'm almost afraid to find out how much for shipping and/or if there's a handling charge for small orders.

Guess I'll keep looking.
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
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abhege
Jan 6, 2014 7:23 PM CST
Found Round Red at Baker Creek and ordered them!
Name: Rita
North Shore, Long Island, NY
Zone 6B
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Newyorkrita
Jan 6, 2014 8:00 PM CST
Turnips and rutabagas both are something I only tried to grow for the first time last year. Turned out pretty good though so I will be planting them again in the spring.

This is a very well written article full of great information.
Name: Dillard Haley
Augusta Georgia (Zone 8a)
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farmerdill
Jan 6, 2014 8:08 PM CST
Abhege. The local feed and seed stores carry Willet Wonder here, so check a couple of your local feed and seeds. Supposedly originated in Georgia. They also sell rape seeds. More folks use it for deer plantings than as an edible I am afraid.
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
Greenhouse Region: Georgia Garden Sages Organic Gardener Beekeeper Vegetable Grower
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abhege
Jan 6, 2014 8:38 PM CST
Oh, great idea! We have a great local feed and seed store here in Newnan!

How do you eat rape? As a salad green or stir fried, steamed?
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
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Horseshoe
Jan 6, 2014 9:54 PM CST
Howdy, Dill...
Long time, no see. Great to see you. And great article! Thanks for continuing to share your knowledge and input.

I've grown quite a few of the plants/crops you've mentioned and like them all. Have never grown Willet's though so may have to give it a try.

Abhege, rape is usually grown as a green, often mixed with other greens. Oftentimes a "Southern patch of greens" will consists of a mix of turnips, kale, rape, mustard all sown broadcast-style in a wide row/bed. It sure makes for some good eats!

As for suppliers, Wyatt-Quarles sells quite a few of these recommendations so any garden center that sells W-Quarles stock may have what you are looking for.

Shoe
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
Greenhouse Region: Georgia Garden Sages Organic Gardener Beekeeper Vegetable Grower
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abhege
Jan 6, 2014 10:00 PM CST
Shoe, thanks for the info. Since I already grow the other greens you mentioned I'll just add rape if I can find the seeds. If we don't eat it, the chickens will! Rolling on the floor laughing Rolling on the floor laughing
Name: Horseshoe Griffin
Efland, NC (Zone 7a)
And in the end...a happy beginning!
Charter ATP Member I helped beta test the Garden Planting Calendar Hosted a Not-A-Raffle-Raffle Garden Sages I sent a postcard to Randy! I was one of the first 300 contributors to the plant database!
For our friend, Shoe. Lover of wildlife (Black bear badge) Enjoys or suffers cold winters Birds Permaculture Container Gardener
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Horseshoe
Jan 6, 2014 10:06 PM CST
Well, I"m sure I can get it here locally if you can't find any. Wouldn't take much to send you a good-sized spoonful to get you going. Just say the word.

Shoe
Name: Alana H
(Zone 7a)
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poisondartfrog
Jan 7, 2014 11:22 AM CST
Baker Creek should thank you for the advert. Based on this I just went and ordered that beautiful turnip, too.
Name: Arlene
Grantville, GA (Zone 8a)
Greenhouse Region: Georgia Garden Sages Organic Gardener Beekeeper Vegetable Grower
Seed Starter Cut Flowers Composter Keeper of Poultry Keeps Goats Avid Green Pages Reviewer
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abhege
Jan 7, 2014 2:47 PM CST
Shoe, thanks for the offer! I'll keep you posted on whether I need to take you up on it!

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