A seedling is a very young plant that grows from a seed. When the moisture, light, and temperature conditions are correct, the seedling’s development begins with seed germination. The seedling sold by Georgian Bay Seeds will be either in 3 1/2″ pots, 4″ pots, 4 cell tray etc. The plants have been growing for at least 6 weeks and will have a healthy rootball.

Unless you are getting your produce at the local farmer’s market, the bulk of the tasty tomatoes you get from your local grocer are most likely “hybrid” tomatoes. A hybrid tomato, simply put, is created when plant breeders intentionally cross-pollinate two different varieties of a plant, with the outcome being an offspring, or hybrid that contains the best traits of each of the parents. Cross-pollination is a natural process that occurs within members of the same plant species. In hybridization, pollination is carefully controlled to ensure that the right plants are crossed to achieve the desired combination of characteristics, such as bigger size or better disease resistance. The process of developing a hybrid typically requires many years.

Herbs and leafy greens are perfect. Examples are lettuce, kale, swiss chard, asian greens like pac choy, dwarf varieties of pepper, dwarf varieties of tomato, eggplant, okra, climbing beans, peas.

Some plants needs to be succession planted so that you have a continuous supply. Example are pac choy, lettuce.

There are four heirlooms categories:

  1. Commercial Heirlooms are open-pollinated varieties introduced before 1940, or tomato varieties more than 50 years in circulation.
  2. Family Heirlooms: Seeds that have been passed down for several generations through a family.
  3. Created Heirlooms: Crossing two known parents (either two heirlooms or an heirloom and a hybrid) and dehybridizing the resulting seeds for how ever many years/generations it takes to eliminate the undesirable characteristics and stabilize the desired characteristics, perhaps as many as 8 years or more.
  4. Mystery Heirlooms: Varieties that are a product of natural cross-pollination of other heirloom varieties.

All heirloom varieties are open-pollinated but not all open-pollinated varieties are heirloom varieties.

The term Heirloom applied to plants was apparently first used by Kent Whealy of Seed Savers Exchange, who first used heirloom in relation to plants in a speech he gave in Tucson in 1981. He had asked permission to use the term heirloom from John Withee, who had used the term on the cover of his bean catalog. John said sure, that he had taken it from Prof. William Hepler at the University of New Hampshire, who first used the term heirloom to describe some beans that friends had given him back in the 1940s.

Heirloom Tomatoes are very important. In the past 40 years, we’ve lost many of our heirloom varieties, along with the many smaller family farms that supported heirlooms. The multitude of heirlooms that had adapted to survive well for hundreds of years were lost or replaced by fewer hybrid tomatoes, bred for their commercially attractive characteristics. We are loosing the genetic diversity at an accelerating and alarming rate.

Every heirloom variety is genetically unique and inherent in this uniqueness is an evolved resistance to pests and diseases and an adaptation to specific growing conditions and climates. With the reduction in genetic diversity, food production is drastically at risk from plant epidemics and infestation by pests. Call this genetic erosion.

It is up to us as gardeners and responsible stewards of the earth to assure that we sustain the diversity afforded us through heirloom varieties.

You will get a healthy seedling transplant of the quantity you need at transplant season. You will not end up with packets of seeds that contains sometimes 20 or more, that loses viability as the months and years go by. When you may only need 1 or 2 seeds from that packet. You will save on buying grow room lights, shelves, seed starting soil, electricity, space and many more.

The pickup location will be at 23 Shippigan Crescent, Toronto, Ontario or 7 Matthew Bay Drive, Parry Sound, Ontario.  Alternatively we can also pre-arrange pick-up in the Barrie and Muskoka area.  List of Farmer’s Market will be provided in May, and those will be added as pickup location also.  Farmer’s market – due to Covid,  not guaranteed to open yet.  We will send an email that contains the pickup instructions.  At the time of pickup, we will follow existing government policies regarding COVID.

No refunds are available once your order has been placed. We spend several months growing these plants and put them on reserve once you’ve placed your order. Therefore we can not offer any refunds if you are unable to pick up your plants for any reason.

Warm season plants (listed below) will be ready for pick up in mid-May when the weather becomes stable enough for putting these warm-weather-loving varieties straight into the garden. They should only be planted end of May or later.

Cool season crops (listed below) will be ready for pickup starting mid April. And needs to be planted soon after picking up.

You will receive an email with the pick up details in early May once we see how the spring weather is unfolding.

All plants are grown from seed by us in our grow room. They will be robust and ready to go right into your planting beds. Plants come with a nice healthy root ball, the perfect size for planting straight into the garden. Plants will be hardened off so you can plant immediately into your garden.

List of Warm Season Plants:
Bitter melon
Bottle gourds

Cool Season Crops:
pac choy
swiss chard

Shipping is NOT AVAILABLE for seedlings.  Only seed packets can be mailed via Canada Post.

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