About 9,000 unique and rare heirloom vegetables, herbs and flowers for sale, including scorching hot peppers!
Green Bay, Wis. — The University of Wisconsin-Green Bay Natural and Applied Sciences program is holding its annual Heirloom Plant Sale, Saturday, May 11, 2019 at the Lab Sciences Building Greenhouse located on the Green Bay Campus at 2420 Nicolet Drive. Doors open at 9 a.m. with numbers passed out starting at 7:30 a.m. for those who don’t want to stand in line. Most plants are $1.75, with some larger or specialty plants up to $3.00. Only cash or checks will be accepted. Those looking for a specific variety should arrive early, but there is a solid selection of tomatoes and vegetables for those who want to wait until after the rush. The sale will end at 3 p.m.
The annual sale, sponsored by the Natural and Applied Sciences academic unit, began in 1997 with only 300 plants for sale. Students benefit from the proceeds that are used to bring in scientists and other speakers that they otherwise would not be able to meet. These funds also support student research projects, as well as, travel to conferences where they can present results of their research and meet scientists in their fields. Last year’s sale raised more than $8,000 and supported research on Lake Whitefish, the geochemistry of regional bedrock, invasive plants in wetlands, and larval fish.
Unlike other vegetable sales, the sale features unique and rare heirloom varieties. Organizers strive to introduce local gardeners to new varieties and protect agricultural biodiversity. This year the sale features many varieties of peppers, including several bell peppers, as well as mild, medium, hot and scorching hot peppers! A variety of several different basils, tomatoes, herbs and a collection of flowers will be offered. Lists of plants offered and links to descriptions can be found at www.uwgb.edu/biodiversity/heirloom or the event post on Facebook.
This sale is unique because it offers only open pollinated “heirloom” varieties of vegetables, herbs and flowers that were developed by gardeners over the last 200 years to satisfy the needs of Wisconsin gardeners. “Heirloom vegetables are gaining in popularity across the country because they speak to our hearts as well as our palates,” says organizer Vicki Medland. “These are plants that our great-grandparents were growing. Our sale includes many varieties developed specifically for the Midwestern growing season. The names of some of the favorite varieties like ‘WI 55,’ ‘King of the North,’ ‘Wisconsin Lakes,’ ‘Pride of Wisconsin’ and ‘Sheboygan’ reflect the dedication to sourcing those varieties best adapted to northern growing conditions. We also have a large number of vegetables from other parts of the world, including peppers and tomatoes from South America, the Caribbean, Europe and southeast Asia. We specialize in varieties that you aren’t likely to find elsewhere, so come and see why our sale is sure to add something special to your summer garden.”