Joseph Lofthouse, Landrace Seedsman [ Home | Status/Forum | Seed List ]

2018 Seed List

This list is from a previous year, many of the items may not be currently available. Please request seeds from current seed list.


The excess seeds grown on my farm are available to home gardeners, small-scale farmers, and public-domain open-source plant breeders. I am growing promiscuously pollinated (PP) locally-adapted landrace populations that are specially suited to thrive on my subsistence level farm with it's unique climate and pests: irrigated desert, super-dry air, sunlight-drenched, cold radiant-cooled nights, short-season, no pesticides nor fertilizers, sporatic weeding, high-altitude clayish limestone-based lake-bottom soil, and philosophy towards diversity. The more of those conditions you share with me the better my seeds are likely to do for you.
My seed is most suitable for growers who live close to me and share a similar climate and philosophy towards growing. All of my varieties have been developed for subsistence level growing conditions without the use of cides nor fertilizers. Home gardeners, plant breeders, and small-scale market growers who welcome diversity of shape, taste, texture, color, size, and maturity dates may love my seeds. My seeds are unsuitable for commercial farms or large operations that require uniformity, predictibility, or stability. My seeds are especially suitable for seed savers who want to develop their own varieties or to diversify their current landraces.

Due to the wide genetic diversity, these seeds make an excellent emergency seed stash. There is so much genetic diversity among my seeds that some family type or other is likely to thrive wherever they are planted. Save the seeds and select for those families that do best in your conditions.

The foreign climate that has most surprised me where my varieties tend to do well have summers that are so blazing hot that vegetables tend to croak in the heat. My varieties are typically short-season, so when planted early in the spring or later in the summer, they may produce a crop before or after the worst of the summer heat and pests would ruin a longer-season crop. One southern grower tells me that he loves short-season crops, cause the longer a crop is in the ground, the more chances there are for something to go wrong.

I love grow reports, and taste reports. Recipes are lovely. Negative reports are particularly valuable to me because they give clues about what traits to work on during the coming years. If you post feedback in a public place, I may link to it or share it to bring more traffic to your post. Tagging me on Facebook, or posting to my wall is a great way for me to find your grow report.
Pricing is one silver dime, dated 1964 or earlier, per packet of seeds, or $5 paper currency. (No checks or digital payments.)

usa shipping is $4 per shipment which covers postage and a bubble envelope.

If your shipment includes only a few packets of tomatoes, potatoes, mullein, breadseeds, and/or tobacco then a single first class postage stamp is sufficient postage. If your shipment includes 4 or more packets of corn or beans, or more than about 20 packets total, please send a few extra dollars towards postage.

Shipping to usa only.

I have lived under a vow of poverty for 18 years, and have operated a food pantry for longer than that. I welcome donations to help me continue feeding my community and being a subsistence farmer breeding new varieties to enhance food security through common sense and traditional methods.

Open Source Seed Initiative
Some of my varieties were pledged to the open source seed initiative: You have the freedom to use these OSSI-Pledged seeds in any way you choose. In return, you pledge not to restrict others' use of these seeds or their derivatives by patents or other means, and to include this pledge with any transfer of these seeds or their derivatives.
Public Domain Seeds
All other varieties I offer are public domain. That means that they can be used without restrictions.
Sell my Seeds
You are welcome to grow my varieties and sell the seeds. No permission is needed. If you let me know that you are growing my varieties for sale, I may do some advertising for you. I ask a 5% royalty as a free-will offering to the plant breeder. If you are a market farmer and use my seed as the foundation for one of your crops, I ask that you remember the plant breeder with an honorarium.
I typically accept seed requests between January 1st and April 30th. During other times of the year, farming occupies my time. I expect a full assortment of seeds and plants to be available during May at the Logan gardener's market, and I typically take a box containing some seeds to market each week.

The list does not contain all of my breeding lines. If you would like seeds from one of my breeding lines, or from something you have read about that is not listed here, please ask.

If a variety carries my name, or the name of my village, or family, I have poured my money, my time, and my soul into developing that variety, and I believe it to be the best possible variety for my garden.

I am a human being, sharing my babies. So if something goes awry along the way, I'll do what I can to make things right, as a human being cooperating with another human being. I'm not a business, so shipping depends on my health, and that of my family and tribe, the weather, my travel schedule, etc. I might only make the treck to the post office once a week.

  Lofthouse-Astronomy Sweet Corn

su. Promiscuously pollinated. Multi-colored. Mid-season (~65 to 75 days). Selected for colorful cobs at milk stage and for resistance to predation by birds and small mammals. It has that fabulous old-fashioned corn taste: Chewy and flavorful without being overly sweet. A robust landrace that is reliable and easy to grow. Developed for subsistence level growing conditions without cides nor fertilizers. An excellent choice for tough growing conditions and for people wanting to save their own seeds or to develop their own variety of sweet corn. I consider this to be the best sweet corn I have to offer for an emergency survival stash. Descended from Alan Bishop's Astronomy Domine Sweet Corn which is descended from hundreds of varieties of heirloom and modern sweet corns. It has been in my garden for a long time, and has drifted significantly away from the original, so a new name seems appropriate. Very tolerant of cold spring soil. I plant 3 weeks before average last frost date. OSSI-pledged. 2 Tablespoons, >100 seeds.

astronomy domine sweet corn
  Harmony Grain Corn

A union between a hybrid swarm of North American grain corns and a synthetic composite of 6 races of South American grain corns: Tuxpeno, Coastal Tropical Flint-Dent, Southern Cateto, Cuzco, Coroico, and high-altitude Andean. Harmony was developed to reunite various races of corn and to create a strong genetic base from which to conduct plant selection and breeding. Contains flint, dent, flour, pop and a small amount of sweet corn. Adapted to temperate growing conditions. Not day-length sensitive. About 85 to 115 DTM to grain stage. Selected for resistance to predation by birds and small mammals. OSSI-pledged. 3 Tablespoons, >100 seeds.

North American and South American Corns: Synthetic composite
  High Carotene Flint Corn

A sister-line selected from Harmony Grain Corn. An ancestor was Cateto, a South American race of corn with high carotene levels. The most exciting trait offered by this corn is high concentrations of carotenes. If this corn is fed to poultry, the carotenes end up in their eggs. Mmm Mmm Mmm! Selection is ongoing for oranger coloration. Variety preservation protocol: Cull any cobs with white kernels or colored pericarp. Cull any kernels with purple or gray coloration. Selected by Joseph Lofthouse in collaboration with ten-thousand years worth of other plant breeders. 1 tablespoon, ~60 seeds.

high carotene flint corn
  Lofthouse Landrace Dry Beans

A landrace containing hundreds of varieties of dry beans. Bred to mature quickly in a cold mountain valley. Contains old heirlooms and new segregating hybrids. Growth habit tends toward bush beans or short-vines which don't climb poles. Plants with super-long or twining vines are culled. The beans mature in about 75 to 90 days. I often harvest the food crop about ten days after the plants are killed by fall frost. These have been selected for easy threshing using human scale techniques like beating with a stick or stomping with feet. I typically harvest and thresh at the same time by pulling up the dry plant and beating it against the inside of a garbage can. These are great used in chili, bean soup, or refried beans. When used in soups, some seeds stay firm no matter how long they are cooked while others disintegrate to make a rich broth. I plant a week or two after the last expected spring frosts. This variety is a plant breeder's dream. There is so much diversity that something is likely to do well anywhere that it is grown. There are plenty of traits, colors, textures, and tastes from which to select while using this as the progenitor of new varieties. Selected by Joseph Lofthouse to thrive under subsistence level growing conditions without pesticides nor fertilizers. OSSI-pledged. 2 Tablespoons, ~80 seeds.

  Lofthouse Landrace Fava Beans

I recommend planting Favas in Cache Valley, the day the snowcover melts in the spring, about the second week of March. Three week old seedlings may also be planted out at that time. Favas don't set seed well in hot weather, so the quicker they get established in the spring, the more likely they are to set seeds. Planting so that they have mid-day or afternoon shade may help productivity. I'd love grow reports about plantings in mid to late summer, and whether they can make a crop before fall frosts. Growers in warmer climates, USDA Zone 8 or warmer, may get best results by direct seeding in the fall. This year's selection tended towards more broad beans, and fewer horse/pigeon beans. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. ~25 seeds.

landrace fava beans
  Lofthouse Landrace Tepary Beans

Short season, landrace tepary beans. I have selected for pods that do not shatter in the field, but that shatter easily after harvest. To harvest I recommend pulling the plant whole and hitting it against the inside of a garbage can. Avoid picking individual pods due to shattering. I also harvest by cutting the vine off just above ground level, finish drying on a tarp, and then beating or stomping the vines to release the seed. Selected by Joseph Lofthouse. 1/2 Tablespoon, ~50 seeds.

Landrace tepary beans
  Lofthouse Landrace Moschata, Medium

This is the squash featured in Carol Deppe's book "The Tao of Vegetable Gardening. Butternut squash, Moschata pumpkins, long necked squash, etc. Medium sized. About 5 to 15 pounds. Yellow or orange flesh. I am selecting for oranger and drier flesh each year. I select against super-sweetness. I select for good keeping qualities. Some of the ancestors of this seed came out of the amazingly genetically diverse Long Island Seed Project. Other ancestors are modern hybrids and old-time favorite heirlooms. These have been intensively selected for short season. My seed saving protocol specifies that 10% of the saved seeds are from pumpkins and the rest are from butternuts or necked squash. Plant after danger of frost has passed. About 85 to 95 DTM. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. OSSI-pledged. 2 teaspoons, ~40 seeds.

landrace moschata squash
  Lofthouse Landrace Moschata, Small

Fruits weight about 1 to 3 pounds. Yellow or orange flesh. These do not keep as long on average as the medium-sized landrace. People often ask for smaller-sized fruits. I don't understand why. The plants are going to produce the same number of fruits whether the fruit weighs one pound or 15 pounds. My theory is that I want to grow the variety that produces more food in the same amount of space. These have been intensively selected for short season. My seed saving protocol specifies that 10% of the saved seeds are from pumpkins and the rest are from butternuts or necked squash. Both of my moschata varieties are sister lines, so they can be planted together. If they cross, fruit size will tend to be half way between medium and small. Plant after danger of frost has passed. About 85 to 95 DTM. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. 1 teaspoon, ~40 seeds.

landrace moschata squash
  Lofthouse Landrace Maxima, Medium

Fruits around 5 to 15 pounds. Promiscously pollinated. Selected for: Short season, great taste, dry flesh, soft leathery skin, medium sized fruits, productivity, and long storage. These have been grown for many generations without crop protection chemicals nor fertilizer. So they thrive in spite of our bugs and diseases. This is a sister line to my small-fruited maxima, so they may be planted together. About 90 DTM. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. 1.5 tablespoon, ~35 seeds.

  Lofthouse-Oliverson Landrace Muskmelon

A great tasting muskmelon with a heavenly aroma and taste: musky, sweet, and soft. An unsophisticated eater might not even realize that this is the same species as what restaurants and grocery stores sell! Best picked just as the fruits are starting to turn yellow, and when the fruit slips from the vine when pulled gently. Limiting water after the first fruits start to ripen leads to higher quality. Developed to thrive under subsitence level growing conditions without cides nor fertilizers. Adapted to a short-season cold-nighted high-altitude mountain valley. This variety has done well in hot climates because it comes on early and produces fruit before the worst of the summer heat and diseases. ~75 to 90 days. Orange fleshed. Netted skin. Fruits about 3 to 5 pounds. Direct seed after danger of frost has passed. Descended from about 80 named varieties of cantaloupes and muskmelons. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse and Susan Oliverson in Cache Valley Utah/Idaho. OSSI-pledged. 1/2 teaspoon ~30 seeds.

landrace seeds
Long Island Seed Project

landrace muskmelon
  Lofthouse Landrace Crookneck

My favorite tasting summer squash. I keep squash shape and color consistent with the traditional crookneck phenotype. I allow diversity of other traits like leaf shape, inter-node length, and days-to-maturity. Contains mostly bush types with a few percent semi-sprawling type vines. Plant after danger of frost is past. Succession plantings 3 weeks earlier, 3 weeks later, and 6 weeks later may extend the harvest. 1 teaspoon ~30 seeds.

landrace crookneck summer squash
  Lofthouse Landrace cucumber

A genetically diverse cucumer landrace. Dual purpose so can be used for fresh eating or pickling. The skin color at fresh eating stage is light yellow to dark green. Seed saving protocol is to taste a piece of the skin from near the stem, and then only save seeds from non-bitter fruits. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. OSSI-pledged. 1/2 teaspoon, ~40 seeds.

landrace cucumbers
  Maximoss Squash

Interspecies-hybrid grex descended from a cross between maxima and moschata squash. Many of these are male sterile (male flowers wither away), so grow maxima and/or moschata squash nearby to act as a pollinator. Because this is an interspecies hybrid, germination can be erratic (averaged 50%). I am hoping to find varieties in this population that combine the great bug-resistance of moschata squash with the great flavor of maxima squash. 1 Tablespoon, ~30 seeds --> ~15 plants.

maximoss squash
Tomatoes & Kin   I am selecting for landraces and promiscuously pollinating tomatoes. I am releasing segregating hybrids. Therefore, offspring may differ from the following descriptions. I taste fruits from the domestic tomatoes before saving seeds from them, therefore, the taste is good (if you like raw tomatoes). I eliminated the commercial "cardboard-like" genes a long time ago!


My favorite market tomato. Red saladette sized fruits (2-3 ounces). Very early and productive. Strongly determinate - so the fruit ripens quickly and the plant croaks. Jagodka was the winner of the frost/cold tolerance trials that I conducted some years ago. Scored well for cold tolerance. Medium score on frost tolerance. This variety is remarkably attractive to bumblebees, so it may not come true to the original Jagodka phenotype. This is an ancestor of Big Hill, and Hamsonita. Originally bred in St. Peterberg Russia by the Vavilov Institute of Plant Industry (VIR). ~20 seeds.

  Big Hill

Big Hill tomato was my first attempt to breed a promiscuously pollinating tomato. The anther cone is open and the anthers are loosely attached to each other. The stigma is exposed. It has a bold floral display, and the flowers are open to the sky and not buried in foliage. Determinate. Large (12 oz) bi-colored fruits: red and yellow. Tastes great. Big Hill is fairly susceptible to cross pollination. Promiscuous pollination is a defining characteristic of this variety. Closed flowers are a dominant trait. Therefore any offspring that have closed flowers are off-type and should not be called Big Hill. I would love to receive seeds from any descendents of this variety that are off-type or have closed flowers since they are hybrids and would further my breeding project. The ancestors of this tomato are Hillbilly, which has been my life-long favorite tasting tomato, and Jagodka, which is my earliest market tomato. Big Hill represents the best traits of each ancestor. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. OSSI-pledged. ~20 seeds.

HX-9 Tomato

My earliest slicing tomato. Red fruits 5 to 8 ounces. Early and productive. Determinate. Fern-like leaves. This is an ancestor to the panamorous and polyamorous tomato projects. ~20 seeds.


Red saladette sized fruits (2-3 ounces). Yellow speckles on fruits. Very early and productive. Indeterminate. Potato leaved. Brad is tied with Jagodka as the earliest tomato that I have found. It produces fruits all season long until killed by frost. Brad came to me via Dan McMurray. ~20 seeds.

  Chariot Cherry Tomatoes

Segregating hybrids from a cross between Yellow Pear and Brad. Brad is tied with Jagodka as my earliest tomato. Yellow Pear is famous as the tomato that the spouse that doesn't like tomatoes will eat. Indeterminate. Fruits might be red or yellow. Fruit shape/size might be pear, cherry, or saladette. Leaf shape is expected to be 1/4 potato-leaved, and 3/4 potato leaved. This is great breeding material for people that want to develop their own varieties of saladette or smaller tomatoes. 1/8th teaspoon ~60 seeds, so you'll have lots to choose from.

  Solanum pimpinellifolium

Current tomato. Red or yellow fruits about 3/8" in diameter. Indeterminate. Smallish plants. ~25 seeds.

Solanum pimpinellifolium
  Lofthouse Short Season Tomato Landrace

A landrace containing the best performing tomatoes in my garden. Fruit from every plant is tasted before saving seeds from it. Only fruits with good taste and texture are used for seed. Includes slicers, canners, saladettes, heirlooms, segregating hybrids, descendants of crosses to wild species, and a few cherries. 2 to 10 oz fruits are typical. I'm not aiming for huge show tomatoes with this landrace. These are selected for subsistence level growing conditions without the use of cides nor fertilizers. Any plant that struggles with bugs, diseases, or weeds is culled. I do not tolerate blossom end rot. My target is early highly productive small to medium sized tomatoes that taste good. Does not include paste tomatoes nor purple tomatoes because I haven't found any that pass the taste test. Fruits are red, yellow, orange, striped, and multi-colored. Hundreds of named varieties have been trialed over the years. Most of them failed spectacularly. The primary survival-of-the-fittest selection criteria is that they must produce fruit in my garden in spite of the short season and cold nights. Secondary selection criteria include taste and tolerance to frost and cold. Generally medium vine length. Mostly determinate to semi-determinate. This landrace contains seeds from all of my tomato breeding projects including those for: promiscuous pollination, cold/frost tolerance, heirloom adaptation, and crosses to wild species of tomatoes. Selected by Joseph Lofthouse. ~50 seeds.

Lofthouse short season landrace tomatoes.
Wild Tomatoes and Interspecies hybrids   I am using wild species of tomatoes as parents to interspecies crosses between domestic tomatoes and wild tomatoes. I am hoping to incorporate disease resistance, beautifully promiscuous flowers, and larger-fruited tomatoes. I am releasing seeds from my breeding projects as soon as I have sufficient seed, hoping that other people will develop wonderful varieties of their own. If nothing else, some of them are gorgeous in a flower garden.

I grow the wild tomato species and hybrids close together hoping for some interspecies hybridization between them.

The taste of the wild tomatoes and hybrids with wild tomatoes are highly variable, from super-sweet and fruity to spitters. Taste is best if they ripen for a month after they fall off the vine.

Germination of the wild tomatoes and crosses can be erratic. I'm including enough seed in the packets to try to compensate for that. Successive flushes of germination may happen every few weeks.

  Solanum peruvianum

Clusters of big flowers are carried above the foliage producing a bold flower display which earns this tomato a place in a flower garden. Stigmas are highly exerted. These are part of my promiscuous pollination project so there is a possibility that some seeds might have been pollinated by S. habrochaites, S. pennellii, or S. corneliomullerii. Received high scores in spring frost/cold tolerance testing. Self-incompatible, so grow several plants together. They can be planted into the same hole/pot. Indeterminate. This is a wild species, so germination may be erratic. Very attractive to pollinators. Pinch of seeds.

Solanum peruvianum

Solanum habrochaites: Closely related to domestic tomatoes, and can act as a pollen donor to them. I have combined multiple accessions into a single population. It has done very well in both spring and fall frost/cold tolerance trails in my garden. It may contain other important traits that were lost during domestication. This population has huge showy flowers, and looks great in a flower garden. The stigmas are exerted for easier cross pollination. It appears that this population is self-incompatible, so a number of plants should be grown together for proper cross-pollination. I am using this species in my promiscous pollination project. Some seeds may have been pollinated by plants descended from crosses with domestic tomatoes. Indeterminate. This is a wild species, so germination may be erratic. Pinch of seeds.

Solanum habrochaites
  Solanum Corneliomullerii

A self-incompatible species of wild tomato. Grow several plants close together for proper pollination. Small delicate plants with inconspicuous flowers with highly exerted stigmas. Selected for two generations to produce seeds in my garden. This is a wild species, so germination may be erratic. Pinch of seeds.

Solanum corneliomullerii
  Interspecies Tomato Hybrids

2nd and 3rd generation seeds from crosses between domestic tomatoes and Solanum habrochaites. These are part of the polyamorous, and panamorous tomato breeding project. The end goal of this project is beautifully promiscuous tomatoes. This is a muddled assortment of genetics. Leaf shape can be anything from potato-leaved, rugose, regular-leaved, habrochaites-leaved, fern-leaved, etc. Fruit color might be green, red, yellow, white, or purple. Most fruits are striped prior to ripening. Mostly cherry tomatoes, though some fruits in later generations are expected to attain 8 ounces. About a quarter of the plants are determinate, the others are indeterminate. Plant size might be anywhere between dwarf and monster. I estimate that about 1/16th of the plants are self-incompatible.

I am hyper-excited to release this seed because of the tremendous amount of diversity it carries within it. There are all sorts of paths that your selection and breeding might take. I am intending to select for open flowers, exerted stigmas, huge-petals, bold floral display, self-incompatibility, fruity-taste, and larger fruits. Perhaps some of these will be resistant to late blight? I'd love grow reports from areas in which tomatoes are difficult to grow because of blights. One of the parents of these crosses originated at very high altitude. Perhaps some degree of frost or cold tolerance will show up. An inter-species hybrid, therefore germination can be erratic. Pinch of seeds.

Panamorous Tomato
  Bok/Pak Choi Grex

The beginnings of a project to adapt Bok/Pak choi to my climate. A promiscuously pollinating grex of every variety of open pollinated (non-male-sterile) bok and pak choi that I could get my hands on. I highly recommend planting Bok Choi in late summer for fall greens. Some of this population is winter hardy, but I haven't specifically selected for that trait. 1/4 teaspoon, >100 seeds.

bok choi, pak choi
  Winter Hardy Kale Grex

A promiscuously pollinating grex of kale. Brassica oleracea. Two generations of ancestors to these seeds survived the winter in my USDA zone 4/5 garden. I highly recommend planting kale in late summer for harvest of greens in the fall, and early spring. The flowers and buds are a delicacy. If planted in about September, just before the arrival of fall rains, this can be grown as a non-irrigated crop in Cache Valley. 1/4 teaspoon, >200 seeds.

winter hardy kale
Small Grains I only offer hulless varieties of grains. That is because I think that we should be able to grow, harvest, and cook food using ony human scale tools and methods. The grains that I offer are easily harvested, threshed, and cleaned using only the human body. Gloves, sticks, tarps, secatueurs, and buckets might help with some tasks, but they are totally optional.

If you grow any of my grains, please consider joining and/or submitting grow reports to the Rocky Mountain Heritage Grain Trials Project being conducted by the Rocky Mountain Seed Alliance and collaborators.

  Lofthouse Wheat

A family heirloom that was developed on my family's farm by my great-great-grandfather. It was first released in 1890. The family story is that James was walking through his wheat field and noticed one plant that was growing better than any of the others. He marked it and saved seed from it to grow in his home garden. At one time, it was the most widely planted wheat in Northern Utah and Southern Idaho. Can be spring planted. For highest yield, plant in early fall. Bred by James Lofthouse in the 1880s. 1 teaspoon, ~80 seeds.

landrace winter rye
  Cache Valley Rye

Collected along about 40 miles of back-roads in the northern Utah wheat growing belt. Landrace. Grows about 4 to 6 feet tall. This would make a great thatching straw. Can be grown as a spring crop. For best results, plant in late summer or early fall. Selection criteria included: Growing feral without irrigation or cultivation; Ease of threshing; Less shattering. Selected by Joseph Lofthouse. Plants grow 4 to 6 feet tall making harvest a joy. 1 teaspoon, ~150 seeds.

landrace winter rye
  Sin Et Pheel Ancient Wheat

An ancient landrace variety from Iraq. Triticum polonicum. Tetraploid. The first time I grew this variety, I felt startled by the huge heads and large seeds. Very productive in my garden. Hullless, and threshes easily. A spring wheat. 1 teaspoon, ~50 seeds.

sin et pheel wheat
  Amber's Hulless Oats

Hulless oats. Plant in spring. To maintain varietal purity and good agronomic and culinary traits, I recommend only replanting seeds that thresh easily. Seed heads are about waist high for easy harvest. 1/2 teaspoon, ~70 seeds.

hullless oats
  Burbank Hulless Barley

Plant in spring. Very productive in my garden. Short plants, so I have to stoop to harvest. 1/2 teaspoon, ~40 seeds.

Burbank Hulless Barley
Spices, Medicinals, & Herbs      
  Yellow Mustard Spice

A beautiful flowering plant that also produces yellow mustard spice. Direct seed in very early spring. Harvest seed when plants die and dry down. Does not shatter readily in the field, but is easily threshed by stomping or beating. Plants grow about 3 feet tall. 1/4 teaspoon >100 seeds.

yellow mustard seeds

Papaver, somniferum. Not for sale, but I'll include a packet as a gift if I'm already sending a packet of something else to you, or if you send me a first class "forever" postage stamp.

Commonly used as a garden flower, for floral decorations, and to add a great taste to baked breads. These have a glorious flower which is very attractive to honeybees. Annual. Spinkle seeds on ground in late fall then stomp to get good contact between seeds and ground. Packet size is approximately 1/16th teaspoon.

  Yellow Yarrow

Plants about 3 feet tall. Perennial and winter hardy Tiny pinch of seeds. Germinates quickly at 85F.

yellow yarrow

Seed originally collected from the wild strain in this area. Plants 3 to 7 feet tall. Germinates slowly, about 3 weeks at 85F. Perennial and winter hardy. Small pinch of seeds.

  Clary Sage (Chia)

I consider this to be the most important breeding project I am working on for my own health. The standard american diet is way over-supplied with Omega-6 oils compared to omega-3 oils. Clary Sage is a species of chia that supplies omega-3 oils in rich abundance. Clary sage is a winter hardy perennial. The natural planting time for these seeds is late summer. They germinate quickly upon arrival of the fall monsoons. They can also be planted in spring, but then act as a biennial, and don't flower until the second year. Flowering plants are about 3 to 4 feet tall. To harvest, I cut the plants off just above ground level, pile them on a tarp to finish drying, then beat them with a stick, and winnow. ~1/16th teaspoon ~40 seeds.

clary sage chia
  Seed/Fiber Flax

A grex of flax varieties that work for seed and/or fiber production. They make a beautiful decorative flower. I consider flax to be a high-priority crop because of the rich abundance of omega-3 oils produced by the seeds. In my garden, flax is not as productive as Clary sage, but I grow both rather than put all my hopes into one crop. Grows about 3 to 4 feet tall. 1/2 teaspoon.

seed and fiber flax
  Broad-leaved tobacco

The leaves on this variety are huge. That simplifies picking and drying single leaves. The plants grow about 6 feet tall. The flowers on tobacco are beautiful and showy. The combination of huge leaves, tall plants, and bold flower display make this a great plant to use for ornamental purposes. It is used by people in my valley for medicinal, veterinary, and pesticide applications. I'm not a smoker, so I'm not qualified to write about using it that way. I set out transplants, that I grow about like tomato plants, but I start them a bit earlier because tobacco seeds are so tiny. Go easy on the seed when planting. A little bit goes a long ways. Packet size is a small pinch, which might be around a couple hundred seeds.

  Narrow-leaved tobacco

I prefer this variety for ceremonial use. Plants grow about 5 feet tall in my garden. If the plants are chopped off at about 4 feet tall, they send out a profusion of new shoots that are easy to bind with thread for making smudge sticks. Packet size is a small pinch.

  Red Orach

A member of the amaranth family. Leaves are edible the whole growing season. Orach often germinates while snow is still on the ground, so plant as soon as possible in the spring. 1/2 teaspoon.

red orach
  Potato: True Pollinated Seeds

A mix of the most prolifically fruiting potatoes on my farm. (Mostly red skins with white flesh.) I highly recommend starting potato seedlings via the wintersown method. If starting indoors, I recommend sowing in 1/2" shallow soil, and adding soil to the pot as they grow. Or transplant the seedlings several times during early growth to bury the stem. Sprout in direct sunlight or under very bright grow lights to keep stems from getting spindly. Start indoor transplants no more than 6-8 weeks before last frost.

Because of my decision to eliminate cytoplasmic male sterility from my garden and to not spread it to others, I am only offering abundantly fruitful potato seeds. ~50 seeds.

True Potato Seeds
Bountiful Potato: True potato seeds
  Garlic Bulbils

Bulbils from garlic clones that have been known to produce true pollinated garlic seeds in my garden. Bulbils are susceptible to freezing in transit during super cold weather, so I don't expect to ship them after mid November. I am only offering bulbils because they are less likely to carry diseases and pests than cloves or bulbs. They are expected to grow into full sized bulbs in 2 to 3 years. They may flower as early as the second year. I don't ship these to Idaho. Please don't request garlic if you are in other localities that prohibit import of garlic for planting.

garlic bulbils
  Egyptian Walking Onion Bulbils

This variety was collected from the yard of my great grandfather before I was born. Bulbils are susceptible to freezing in transit during super cold weather, so I don't expect to ship them after mid November. I don't ship these to Idaho. Please don't request these if you are in other localities that prohibit import of onions for planting.

  Yellow Beets

Yellow beets. The beginning of a project to adapt yellow beets to my garden. Seed from red beets was grown nearby, so about 5% of this seed is expected to produce red beets. Like everything I offer, seed was grown by Joseph Lofthouse. 1/2 tablespoon, ~70 seed pods --> ~120 plants.

yellow beets
  Red Beets

Red beets. Seed from yellow beets was grown nearby, so about 5% of this seed is expected to be hybridized with yellow beets. Like everything I offer, seed was grown by Joseph Lofthouse. 1/2 tablespoon, ~70 seed pods.

yellow beets
  Purple-top White-globe Turnip

This has been growing feral on my farm ever since I grew my first seed crop. An open pollinated variety with limited genetic diversity. It does well here, so why mess with a good thing? I really like planting this mid-summer for a beautiful fall crop that mostly misses the common turnip pests. 1/8th teaspoon, ~200 seeds.

purple top white globe turnip
  Lofthouse Sunroot

Clones/cuttings/tubers of this variety are available. Shipped only during warm weather. I'll delay shipping until the weather warms up. If requesting this variety, please add $8 for shipping, which will cover shipment of several different kinds of cuttings/clones/tubers.

Lofthouse Sunroots (Helianthus tuberosus) originated as a cross between an improved population of feral sunroots collected in Kansas, and a commercial clone. They have been selected for vigor, productivity, and good agronomic and culinary properties like ease of digging and cleaning, larger seeds, bigger flowers, shorter stolons, larger tubers, etc. Because they are a genetically diverse population they set seeds prolifically, weather permitting. Collecting lots of seeds may require bagging the blossoms soon after petal drop to prevent predation by birds. This variety was developed for subsistence level growing without the use of fertilizers or cides. They are winter hardy in a cold mountain valley in USDA zone 4b. Sunroot tubers are very susceptible to dehydration, so roots are best stored in soil, or refrigerated in plastic. Plant seeds about the time that apple trees are blooming. Sunroots stored overwinter in the ground can be harvested whenever the soil isn't frozen. I typically cut stems off about a foot high in early winter to prevent winds from levering the tubers out of the ground. These are reliably winter hardy in USDA zone 4b. Bred by Joseph Lofthouse. OSSI-Pledged.

lofthouse sunroot, jerusalem artichoke, sunchoke
Cactus The varieties of cactus listed here have been winter hardy in usda zone 4b for more than 8 years. Winter survival is best on cactus grown in well draining soil. My formula for cactus soil is 70% sand, and 30% compost.

  Opuntia polyacantha Seeds

Prickly Pear Cactus. The most common native opuntia in my area. I eat nopales from this species if picked young. I consider the fruits to be unpalatable. Germination 16% after 3 weeks at 85F. I have had good success germinating cactus seeds by putting them in a jar with an inch of wet sand. Then transplanting them to pots after they have sprouted. Cactus grow best if given plenty of water while young. I plant them in sand, and irrigate every day, during the summer, when watering the rest of the greenhouse plants. Then let them dry out in the fall. 1/2 teaspoon, ~20 seeds.

prickly pear
  Opuntia Polyacantha Cuttings

Opuntia polyacantha. The most common native opuntia in my area. I eat nopales from this species if picked young. I consider the fruits to be unpalatable. This variety has lots of big spines, and is very resistant to predation by animals. 2 pads.

Clones/cuttings/tubers of this variety are available. Shipped only during warm weather. I'll delay shipping until the weather warms up. If requesting this variety, please add $8 for shipping, which will cover shipment of several different kinds of cuttings/clones/tubers.

prickly pear
  Spineless Prickly Pear Cuttings

Opuntia humifusa. Eastern Prickly Pear. This is the variety of prickly pear that I harvest as nopales for my farmer's market and local restaurants. It produces an abundance of nopales, and bright yellow flowers in the spring. It has a few large spines, and many tiny spines. It is not suitable for growing in the badlands, because it easily succumbs to predation by animals. In my climate, the fruits don't ripen sufficiently to be palatable enough for my liking. 2 pads.

Clones/cuttings/tubers of this variety are available. Shipped only during warm weather. I'll delay shipping until the weather warms up. If requesting this variety, please add $8 for shipping, which will cover shipment of several different kinds of cuttings/clones/tubers.

prickly pear
  Beaver Tail Cactus Cutting

Opuntia basilaris. This has been hardy in my usda zone 4b garden, but I think it would grow better in a warmer climate. I think of this as a 'walking' cactus because the older pads die after the young pads send down roots, and so it moves across the landscape. My other cactus grow as clumps and retain a central stem. I consider both the fruits and leaves to be unpalatable. One pad

Clones/cuttings/tubers of this variety are available. Shipped only during warm weather. I'll delay shipping until the weather warms up. If requesting this variety, please add $8 for shipping, which will cover shipment of several different kinds of cuttings/clones/tubers.

beaver tail cactus
  Walking Stick Cholla Cuttings

Cylindropuntia imbricata. Also known as tree cholla. The spines on this variety have a hook, so it's the fiercest cactus that I grow! Flowers have been indistinct in my garden. 2 cuttings.

Clones/cuttings/tubers of this variety are available. Shipped only during warm weather. I'll delay shipping until the weather warms up. If requesting this variety, please add $8 for shipping, which will cover shipment of several different kinds of cuttings/clones/tubers.

tree cholla

Seed collected growing feral in non-irrigated places in Cache Valley. Phenotypically diverse. 1/8 teaspoon.

  Other Seeds

I only posted the most glamorous and abundant seeds to this list. If you want other seeds, scions, or cuttings, or things from my breeding projects, or that I could collect from the wildlands, send me a message. Because they are small seed lots, and experimental, I don't do germination testing on seeds from the wildlands nor from my breeding projects other than planting them for my own use.


I am thankful for the donations of seed, equipment, and funds that have made it possible for me to develop so many glorious varieties. I love the tastes, smells, and colors of the vegetables. I am thankful that being a subsistence farmer, and living under a vow of poverty, allows me to donate tremendous amounts of food to those in need. I love you for your ongoing support and encouragement, as we collaborate together, to enhance food security through common sense and traditional methods.

Free Seeds Low Germination or Experimental

Some of my varieties are experimental, or did not meet my germination standards. That might be because I tested under the wrong conditions, or because the seed has low viability. I you are already paying shipping, I am making those seeds available as gifts, because what germinates (about 40% to 74%) will still be great. Varieties include: landrace zuchini, mixed flax (for food or fiber), cilantro, cucurbita ficifolia, Cushaw (mospermia) squash, mixed calendula, segregating dry beans (pole/bush/etc), Red-Root amaranth - Amaranthus retroflexus, lambsquarters.

I have lots of a hybrid swarm of flour corn to share. Great for plant breeding. I don't want to sell it, because I consider it to be a rough draft of a variety that I am working on, but I'll send some as gifts. My working name is Draft Flour Corn. It is descended from a cross between North American and South American corns, and is a sister-line to Harmony, but selected for soft-flour kernels.

Locally Adapted Landrace Locally Adapted Landrace. Great biodiversity and well adapted to my garden. Phenotype fairly consistent from year to year.
A grex A grex: Mixed cultivars and heritage. Not grown long enough in my garden to be considered a landrace.
Promiscuously Pollinated Promiscuously Pollinated: More biodiversity than an open pollinated cultivar. [Not locally adapted and/or not enough diversity to call it a landrace.]
An open pollinated (inbred) variety An open pollinated (inbred) variety. Low genetic diversity.
unstable breeding project Breeding project: Ustable seed
Ancestors Sourced from Hog Wild Seed Swap Ancestors included seeds obtained from the Hog Wild Seed Swap
Ancestors Included The Long Island Seed Project Ancestors included The Long Island Seed Project
Ancestors included Face of the Earth Seed from Bishop's Homegrown Ancestors included Face of the Earth Seed from Bishop's Homegrown
Ancestors included Peace Seeds by Alan Kapuler Ancestors included Peace Seeds by Alan Kapuler
Ancestors included GRIN: Germplasm Resources Information Network Ancestors included GRIN: Germplasm Resources Information Network
Pledged to the Open Sourse Seed Initiative Pledged to the Open Source Seed Initiative
How to get seeds
By Mail: To obtain seed samples send one silver dime, dated 1964 or earlier, to my post office box for each variety desired. That was the retail price of a packet of seeds in 1860 when my great-great-great grandmother started farming in Paradise. I'm still farming in the same village and asking the same price more than 150 years later. I accept other denominations of silver coins dated 1964 or earlier, and modern silver eagles that are 0.999 fine. Include four dollars cash per shipment to cover the shipping costs. [Please, if you send anything other than paper put it in a padded or bubble envelope, or tape dimes securely to a piece of cardstock inside an envelope.] Silver dimes are readily available at pawn shops and on eBay. My vow of poverty precludes me from having a bank account so I don't accept checks nor electronic money. Frugal shoppers will notice the bargain pricing available for paying with silver (real money). My mailing address is in the photo at the bottom of this page.

In person: Drop by the Farmer's Market in Logan, or look for me at local seed swaps during the winter.

By Donation: If you have experienced a disaster or family emergency (such as unemployment, flood, or divorce) let me know about it. I'll put together a package of seeds for you: My choice of varieties, whatever I have too much of. It might even include commercial seeds that I don't expect to plant.

By Swap: I would be glad to swap for any of the following seeds, especially if they are from your own breeding projects. Unless specifically stated, I do not want commercial seeds, and especially not seeds with poison on them. On swaps, I ask that you pay the postage going both ways. I get so many requests for swapping that I can't afford the postage. I end up gifting most of the seeds that I receive in swaps to local seed exchanges or collaborators, therefore I am rarely able to give grow reports.

Warm Regards,

Blog: Mother Earth News -- Landrace Gardening.

If sending eMail I'd really like it if you used encryption. Here is my public key.
I have found GnuPG easy to use.

Creative Commons Licence
Photos/Writing by Joseph Lofthouse by Joseph Lofthouse are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available at

Food Freedom

In May 2018, Utah's Food Freedom law went into effect. It basically says that people can make/sell food to each other for home use, as long as the buyer is told that it wasn't inspected by the government, and that the seller discloses if their kitchen handles common allergens. Home produced rabbit and chicken meat were included, but not pork, or beef. Raw milk has wierd rules.

What this means in practical terms, is that it is now legal for us to make food at home and sell it to each other without government interference.

Here's what a sample lable looks like. Everything above my name is not required.