In this exciting newsletter…

 Meet Rob Johnston, founder of Johnny’s Selected Seed Company.
 Enter a CONTEST to win a seed packet from Johnny’s Selected Seeds.
 Discover which CLIMATE ZONE you live in.
 Learn how to PLAN your own home garden!
 Watch CHILDREN love to garden!
• RECIPES: Freshen Up Your Diet with Light Vegetable Dishes
        • Scrumptious Vegan Caesar Salad
        • Orangey Colorful Root Salad



Imagine walking out your back door to a lush, vibrant garden teeming with dew-soaked kale, radishes, bok choy, carrots, cucumbers… Enjoy the creative and rewarding process of designing, measuring, digging, seeding, and planting life-giving food, the best! Savor delicious vegetables in your own garden! Beyond the medicinal healing and delightful flavors, growing food is extremely ecological for our ozone and air. Gardening is highly educational and fun for children who often love to eat foods they have grown. 

Seeds are the core of health, precious beyond words. Organic gardeners are the true heroes of the world. You can be one too. Organic home gardens positively enhance the Earth’s ecology and animals. Let us help you begin to Plan, Plot, and Produce Plants to delight and enliven your great life! If you are considering planting a home, community, patio or balcony garden, NOW is the time to put in your seed order! With Covid isolation, many are planning spring gardens now. Get your seeds before it is too late! 


With Covid, many are creating home gardens as an educational, economical, and ecological activity for the whole family. Don’t miss out! Ask family members which vegetables and herbs they love most. Have a vegetable and herb tasting party and note which ones are favorites. Make dips and dressings with fresh herbs, such as a tofu-dill dip. Study seed catalogues and learn which grow best in your zone (see the chart in our newsletter). Then expand your veggie horizons and stock up on a variety of bright, colorful and nutritious plants! Be sure to include greens, roots, and sweet vegetables along with herbs, micro greens and try a berry bush or two.


Beginners, start small. If a group is helping, increase the size and go for it! Look at your yard or community field. Observe where is the water source? Watch how the sun moves throughout the day. Gardens need a lot of sun, especially morning sun, as afternoon sun can be hot and drying. In desert climates you might need to set up a sun shield over the plants. Don't forget patio or balcony container gardens as well.

Our friend and Master Gardening expert, Tricia Attaway, suggests newcomers prepare a plot(s) about 4 feet wide and as long as you desire - that way you can reach over to pick the plants and don’t have to walk on the garden. As the years go by, your garden will evolve. Just enjoy it. Ask people for help with any task. People generally love to pitch in…or "dig in" with the right incentive, like a good meal?


There are benefits to both. 

GROUND: After you choose the location of your plot, now think about loosening the soil so the plant roots have room to spread out. The soil in your yard should be tested at the County Extension Services to determine if it needs to be amended with organic fertilizer. Hopefully no destructive non-organic chemicals have been used on your lawn and if so, it is time to stop this practice for your family, neighbors, ecology, and animals. You may till or better yet, Double Dig, if possible. Read: How to Grow More Vegetables Than You Ever Thought Possible by John Jeavons.

RAISED BEDS: These make the plants easy to tend and allow all organic soil for your garden. A box needs to be purchased or built, using uncontaminated wood, into which you add organic soil. This is a process and part of the preparation. Get help if needed. A Raised Bed box and soil can be used for many years.


Both have benefits. Tilling with an electric tiller is easier, but it does disturb the micro-organisms in the soil. If beginning, check into renting a tiller. You can also till with a shovel. Remember to ask for help as needed. Double Digging, which John Jeavons recommends, greatly reduces weeds as the top layer of grass and weeds are removed. Double Digging creates superior soil and will grow the most abundant garden because amendments are added in the Double Digging Process. This is healthy, labor-intensive work, but very rewarding, as the garden needs less weeding and fertilizing during the season.


Our Part 2 Gardening Series will be coming out soon.



by Nancy Bubel and Jean Nick of RODALE

Starting plants from a seed grants earlier harvests, greater variety, healthier seedlings, lower costs, and the undeniable sense of satisfaction and reward. 

For the most complete, up-to-date information on starting plants from seed, turn to The New Seed-Starter's Handbook. Written by a gardener with 30 years of experience, this updated, easy-to-use reference explains everything you need to know to start seeds and raise healthy seedlings successfully. CLICK HERE > 


Founder of one of America’s superlative organic seed companies, Rob Johnston, of Johnny’s Selected Seeds, is a gardening hero. Rob met Lino Stanchich in 1971, in Providence, RI, at Lino’s Walden Center, a small macrobiotic store and restaurant where Rob, in his spare time from working at The Golden Sheaf, helped Lino cook and get the restaurant started. 

Lino has followed Rob’s tremendous commitment and success through the years and as Rob won the national honor of the 2013 ALL-AMERICA SELECTIONS BREEDER’S CUP. Also author of Growing Garden Seeds, Rob says, “Food is medicine, and it can begin in a modest home garden.”

Now 100% employee-owned, Johnny’s Selected Seeds sells the highest quality seeds nationally and internationally to grow grains, beans, vegetables, heirloom vegetables, fruits, micro-greens, medicinal herbs, flowers, spices… from vibrant greens and luscious squash and carrots, to cucumbers and cayenne! Johnny’s stands by its superlative seeds and offers a 100% satisfaction guarantee. This vital company takes pride to present plants that are as easy to grow they are delicious.

Rob Johnston, at age 22, as he began Johnny’s with $500 savings.

ROB JOHNSTON WRITES:  I started Johnny’s in 1973, on a wing and a prayer, really.  I was interested in better food, particularly cereals and vegetables.  I was working on a small vegetable farm in New Hampshire.  What was behind the seeds that we were planting?  Where did they come from?  I sought out individuals who helped me to answer those questions.  I started a tiny company from scratch with the objective of offering special seeds that would grow better quality vegetables.  Even in the first year I brought in special seeds from Europe and Asia to complement the American ones. Now, 48 years later, Johnny’s is about 200 people.  This includes a research and farm staff of 40 on 60 acres to develop varieties that are both delicious and easy to grow – that combination is our objective. Food is medicine, and it can begin in a modest home garden. READ MORE HERE

Johnny’s Selected Seeds’ 120 Acre Farm now in Albion, Maine.

JOHNNY’S SELECTED SEEDS: Visit their website with vibrant photographs and descriptions of seeds, growing guidance, tools for gardening and compost, videos, and an amazing full-color catalogue that is an education in itself!


Send an email to Jane and Lino describing the home or community garden you are planning this Spring.

Just two paragraphs are fine. Longer if you wish. We will gather a group to select the most practical garden plan and inspiring essay. Then we will publish it in our next newsletter. You may be the winner!

CONTEST DEADLINE: MARCH 31, 2021. Send your essay to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 




As a public school teacher, I observed that when kids plant veggies, they eat them! At the award-winning Odyssey Charter School in Melbourne, FL, each elementary classroom has its own vegetable garden! Learning about seeds, soil, and sunshine connects children closely with the cycles of life, with food, and gives them an appreciation of ecology…and of the Earth! Include your children and grand-children in the planning and planting of the garden. Small hands are great for pushing in seeds into soil. Teens can carry soil, help stake, and dig the plot. Then sit back and watch the wonder in their eyes as they see the sprouts come forth, then later when they harvest and eat the delicious vegetables. – Jane


Foods and Recipes to Lighten Up Your Springtime
and Revitalize Your Body

© Jane Quincannon Stanchich

Do you feel that your “Cabin Fever” has been increased by Covid and isolation? Do you feel dragged down, hot, heavy, and edgy? Eating lightly cooked foods and some raw salads can help both your total health and moods! During the past winter, when it was darker and colder outside, you may not have had adequate fresh, raw, or lightly cooked vegetables. 

All-weather salads provide our bodies essential vitamins, enzymes, and lively energy. Lightly prepared vegetables such as carrots, parsnips, turnips, lettuce, arugula, and dark leafy greens balance and help us digest our rich, hearty grains, tempuras, and stews. We need to have the yin with the yang. So lighten your veggie table and bring balance to your meals and your life… to feel and look better! Fresh, lightly cooked vegetables are perfect for all weather.

We need salads all year round. During these still chilly weeks, people often tend to eat only longer cooked vegetables and thus may deplete nutrients, enzymes, and energy from their bodies. Lightly cooked vegetables impart a more yin and cooling energy. Therefore, if you live in a heated house, drive a heated car, and work in heated buildings, you are living in warm, dry air like the desert. Fresh salads add balance and enliven our meals, bodies, and moods during all seasons.

Lightly prepared vegetables provide essential vitamins, minerals, and enzymes that may be reduced or eliminated during longer cooking. For example, vitamin C, abundant in many raw vegetables, is essential for the absorption of iron. That is one reason why macrobiotic cooking includes the daily use of raw garnishes. Every day throughout the year, I prepare fresh greens that I serve with other organic vegetables in marinated, pressed, wilted, boiled salads and light dishes. For salt, I love to use umeboshi vinegar (sparingly,) as it is tart and salty - great for salads and greens.

Along with warm and strengthening dishes, prepare these wonderful year-round vegetable recipes to refresh as small side dishes or even condiments and accompaniments to a balanced macrobiotic meal. There are endless combinations of ingredients and dressings, so be creative and make up some of your own. Balance is key, so tune in to your needs, your activities… and freshen up your life…all year through! 
 Scrumptious Vegan Caesar Salad
* Orangy Colorful Root Salad
... and many more RECIPES HERE 



 Honoring Ecological Heros
 Ways Wellness Experts - Macrobiotic Teachers thrive during Covid
• Caring for our Liver and Gall Bladder 
 Natural methods to repel garden pests 
 Growing Micro-green Powerhouse Veggies
• Greens, Glorious Greens- Recipes for life

JANE AND LINO STANCHICH, Licensed Nutritionists, are available for online consultations and cooking coaching, guidance, menu planning. 
Contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 828-299-8657.
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