Italian Seeds Pronto understand the importance of regional Italian cooking Italian Seeds Pronto are the New Zealand distributors of Franchi vegetable seed and Franchi herb seed Franchi vegetable and herb seed for discerning kitchen gardeners Franchi Sementi for Italian regional varieties Franchi Sementi offers a range of heirloom varieties selected for superior taste!Cavolo Nero Laciniato, Cime di rapa, Basil Napoletano, Radicchio rossa di treviso, Wild rocket, Celeriac, Artichoke Violetta Lunga, Cardoon, Fennel Montebianco
Italian tomatoes are globally known for flavour.Many of the Franchi varieties have been grown by the same family in their home region for generations from original seed.Each Italian tomato has its own reason for being- making passata (puree) baking,roasting,drying,sauces and for slicing.
Will they grow here in New Zealand?
Terroir is a very simple but powerful concept,whereby the climate,soil and plant interact to produce an expression of that interaction. Great examples of terroir expression can be found in cheese,coffee and wine.The Franchi tomato seed on offer are defined by variety and regional origins so select a variety best suited to your useage and province in New Zealand.
There are two types of tomato. Indeterminate (cordon) and determinate(bush)Indeterminate will need to have their 45˚side shoots removed and the top shoot too,while bush (determinate) variety doesn't.There are more cordon varieties than bush and the bush do tend to be smaller varieties,although in gardening there always is an exception.
Whilst many varieties are available to us we try and choose for suitabilty to the varying terroir of New Zealand. Franchi Sementi are genuine Italian heirloom All packets have 100's of seeds. All are untreated and GE free. All have great depth of flavour and texture.
The Beeline and Seedyworks seeds are from a reliable local producer
Franchi Italian Tomatoes grown in Aotearoa
Tomato (Pomodoro) San Marzano Redorta DBOS 106/94
Great for sauces!
Franchi Selezione Speciale S. Marzano sel Redorta. A very large heirloom San Marzano plum tomato which fruits are meaty with few seeds and the skin quite thin; making it multi-purpose to eat fresh/sauce or dry. The plant is very vigourous and the flavour "real tomato" Named for a mountain in the Alps. Indeterminate variety.
Pomodoro Redorta DBOS 106/94
Tomato (Pomodoro) Costoluto Fiorentino DBO106/18
A large deeply- ribbed beefsteak variety from Florence, Tuscany. A vigorous tomato plant that is a good producer. Awesome flavour ( rich and meaty with lots of juice ) A favourite of many Italians living here in New Zealand. This tomato will grow well throughout any province in the country. Around 150-180 g. Sydney chef, Steve Manfredi suggests Slicing off the top, adding some olive oil and bake, the flesh will develop into a delicious sauce. Also good for fresh eating . #genuine Italian heirloom 2g approx 300 seeds. Indeterminate
Pomodoro Costoluto Fiorentino DBO106/18
Tomato ( Pomodoro) Red Pear Sel.Franchi DBOS 106/107
Selezione Speciale Old North Italian early variety specifically selected by Franchi Sementi. Outstanding producer of very large flavoursome pear shaped fruit with vertical ribs. Very meaty,few seeds and although juicy not a wet tomato. Its ideal for stuffing because of its robustness and shape. Usually picked green or just starting to turn pink. Will grow well in most provinces of New Zealand and we reckon this is one of the best tasting Italian tomatoes available . It should be noted this is not the small pear shaped tomato called red pear by some U.S seed companies
Indeterminate 1g approx 180 seeds
Pomodoro Red Pear DBOS 106/107
Tomato (Pomodoro) Red Cherry DBO106/111
also known as " pomodoro for the balcony"
Very early open - pollinated cherry tomatoes “Pomodorini” Dependable vigorous plant producing an abundance ( lots and lots) of tasty small low -acid sweet fruits which why kids love them .Ideal for pots if space is limited. Grows well throughout New Zealand #genuine Italian heirloom 1.5g approx 200 seeds. Determinate
Pomodoro Red Cherry DBO106/111
LIGHT REFRESHING AND CLEANSING
Misticanza is the Italian name for a variety of different leaves and many are suitable for year-round planting and harvesting like Quattro Stagioni,Di Lattughe and Di Radicchi.Spring and Autumn is good for Valeriana Verte De Cambrai,( Lambs lettuce)Arugula (rocket) Romana Bionda degli Ortoloni (Cos) Winter leaves include Passion di Brune, Parella Rossa, Testa di Burro D'Inverno Summer tends to like Lingua Di Canarino ( green oak leaf) Rosso di Trento, Maravilla de Verano Canasta.
Pick a cooler position and water well and they will be green and tender. When picked young although softer the flavour is well defined.Avoid overwhelming first picked tender leaves with astringent vinegar dressings instead opt for soft fresh olive oil and season with salt and pepper
Many listed below are also suitable for year-round growing
Lettuce (lattuga)Romana Bionda Lentissima a Montare DBO84/13
A wonderful upright romaine lettuce(baby cos) that is resistant to high temps making it slow to bolt.The lettuce has light green ribbed soft tasty leaves. This variety is often used in a classic Caesar salad.
8g packet (lots of seeds)
Lattuga Romana Bionda Lentissima a Montare DBO 84/13
lambs Lettuce ( Valeriana) D' Olanda A Seme Grosso DBO 140/3
A Dutch variety which has a larger leaf than Cambrai. The larger fatter leaf is more a pale green shade, soft with a tender texture. Great flavour and very good cold resistance. One of the best tasting greens.
5 gram pkt
Lambs Lettuce (valeriana) D'Orlanda A Seme Grosso DBO 140/3
Lambs Lettuce (Valeriana )Verte De Cambrai DBO 140/6
Also known as lambs lettuce. Large round green leaves with a smallish head. A good spring lettuce that will go to seed in hot temperatures. A mild tasting lettuce with a hint of nuttiness. This variety has very good cold resistance.
Valeriana Verte de Cambrai DBO140/6
Lettuce ( Lattuga) Degli Ortolani DBO84/4
Romaine lettuce (also referred to as Cos) with tall large tight head and dark green crunchy leaves packed into a cylindrical shape. Grow from seedlings or direct 20cm apart. This is the lettuce for Caesar salads. Does best in winter and spring. Around 65 days to picking. 9g approx. 5000 seeds.
Lattuga Romana DBO84/4
Lettuce (Lattuga) Testa Di Burro D'Inverno DBO79/8
Lattuga Testa Di Burro D'Inverno is a Italian winter butterhead lettuce. An early variety that is recommended for autumn/winter harvest. The head is slightly closed but not tightly wrapped and has soft melt in the mouth leaves.
10g approx 6400seeds
Lattuga Burro D Inverno DBO 79/8
Lettuce Misticanza Di Lattughe DBO93/1
14 lettuce,including,lettuces 4 seasons,romaine,verona, rosso trento. A mix of varieties for an evenly balanced salad mix. Broadcast Seed about 20cm apart on a smooth well-prepared bed and cover with soil. Ready in around 35 days. New plantings every few weeks for continuous harvest. A cut and come again mixture. 12g approx 7000 seeds.
Misticanza Lattughe DBO93/1
Lettuce ( Lattuga) Lingua di Canarino DBO78/19
“Canarys tongue” An oak leafed green-headed variety. Oak leaf has a dense, dark green head of tender crisp serrated leaves. Suitable for spring, summer and autumn planting. Grows really well in cooler provinces of NZ. 8g approx 4500 seeds.
Lattuga Lingua di Canarino DBO 78/19DBO78/19
Lettuce (Lattuga )Maravilla de Verano Canasta DBO 79/72
A Spanish variety grown widely throughout Italy. Mid/late,green with scarlet edging and a good size head.A very tasty crunchy lettuce.
Lattuga Maravilla Canasta 79/72
Misticanza (mixture) Quattro Stagioni DBO 93/4
(Four Seasons) A mixture of 14 of Italy's finest including,radicchio,endive, green chicory romaine, 4 seasons and verona lettuce leaves. Adds colour,flavour and texture for great salads. Cut and come again salad mixture so stagger sowing for continuous harvest. Note the seed count!
12g approx 7000 seeds
Misticanza Quattro Stagioni i DBO93/4
Lettuce (Lattuga) Little Gem DBO 79/35
Little gem is a compact quick maturing baby cos lettuce. Has a small, firm sweet heart and the leaves are small enough to eat whole. Subtly sweet flavour. This partcular little gem has been popular in Italy for over a 100 years.
8 gram packet 1000's of seeds
Lattuga Little Gem DBO 79/35
Cucumber (Cetriolino) Beth Alpha DBO38/16
This variety is one of the most popular cucumbers throughout the Mediterranean; one of the earliest to produce and certainly one of the tastiest, crispiest cucumbers available. Thin skin and productive over a long season. PICK WHEN AROUND 15CM FOR BEST FLAVOUR AND TEXTURE. They do well on a trellis but you can also grow in the ground. Transplant or direct seed approximately 1 metre apart.
6g approx 180 seeds.
Melone Zatta DBO 91/28
In Italy called 'Brutto ma Buono' ( ugly but good) what it lacks in good looks it makes up for with intense rich flavour. This is the melon believed referred to by Jefferson in 1771 as 'cantaloupe massa' and viewed by many as a lost variety even to this day. Scalloped oranage and green scaly skin but with sweet dark orange fruit. Sow 5-6 seeds in a hill when soil is warm and thin to 2-3 plants or grow from transplants. Melons need warm weather so don't plant in cool or very wet soils. Allow around 90 days. Perfect with proscuitto.
3 gram packet around 120 seeds
Melone Zatta 91/28
Radish (Ravanello) Candela Di Fuoco DBO 112/9
'Candle of Fire' radish ( ravanello). Has long tapering vivid red -skinned roots with crisp white flesh. Succulent and very quick maturing. Direct sow most anytime of the year avoiding the high heat of mid summer.
12 grams 1200 seeds
Radish (Ravanelli) GLBZ 112/39
From Franchi's Golden Line Le Bizzarre range.A high- quality blend and colourful mixture of white,yellow,red and purple radishes Very tasty and crunchy. Easy to grow and so quick! Direct sow almost any time of the year avoiding the mid summer high temps.
Ravanelli Colorati GLBZ 112/39
Radish (Ravanello) Gaudry 2 DBO 112/3
Small globe shaped peppery salad radish with an attractive red neck and white base. An early variety that is reliable and easy to grow. Direct sow most of the year.
Ravanello gaudry 2
Radish (Ravanello) Dattero Rosso DBO112/38
Bright red mid-length cylindrical crisp and crunch radish. Best sown spring and autumn and avoid the high mid summer temperatures to prevent from going to seed.
A sprinkle of sea salt on a perfect peppery radish is simple but delicious
1.2g approx 1000 seeds.
Rocket (Rucola) Coltivata DBO115/1
A milder variety than wild rocket (selvatica) but with the same characteristic flavours of nutty, pepper and spice which is associated with this leaf. Rocket can bolt easily so avoid planting in the high heat of summer. Make frequent plantings every few weeks for continuous supply. Around 40 days. Can be grown in pots.
Rocket (Rucola) Coltivita Sel.Ortolani DBOS115/3
'Speciale Selezione ' Very high quality. Early rustic plant with dark green lightly serrated leaves and a very robust peppery flavour. A favorite rocket of many market growers in Italy because of its consistent taste,colour and growth habit. Sow direct when soils are warm or sow undercover and plant out early spring. around 40 days
15 g approx 7000 seeds
Rucola sel. Ortolani DBOS115/3
Wild Rocket(Rucola Selvatica) DBO115/5
A stronger and more intense spicy, peppery flavour than cultivated rocket. Wild rocket is a very robust plant with deeply lobed leaves with sometimes a burgundy tinge. Harvest at any stage but best when small. If you leave some plants in the ground the seed will be scattered and should come back year after year.Good to use in pasta dishes as well as salads. 4g approx 7000 seeds
Wild Rocket (Rucola Selvatica) DBO115/5
Rocket (Rucola) Selvatica a Foglia D'Ulivo DBOS115/4
Selezione Speciale. A superior olive-shaped leaf giving its name and characteristic look. Medium sized soft leaf with intense spicy flavour. This rucola selvatica ( wild rocket) smell great and its peppery invigorating leaf can be mixed into any salads. Best grown in autumn and spring to avoid going to seed. Around 50 days
3 gram packet
Rucola Selvatica A Foglia D'Ulivo DBOS 115/4
Radicchio ( Cicoria) has been around for centuries. Pliny, the elder makes mention of the red-lined lettuce of the Veneto region noting that not only was it tasty the leaves could also cure insomnia and purify the blood.
The modern radicchio with its rich red and white leaves was developed in the mid 1800's.Today, radicchio is the generic name of a few types of leaf chicory. There are many kinds but the most famous and important are Rosso di Treviso, Variegata Di Castelfranco.These have IGP status
Both red and green cicoria thrive in cooler temperatures and can tolerate frost.Mostly red and green cicoria is used torn and raw; when cooked the bitterness is less pronounced and changes to an autumnal red-brown and develops the trademark nutty flavour
Heading chicory and radicchio initially grow a mass of loose leaves that in time will head up.
Indive (indiva) Scarola Bionda A Cuore Pieno DBO121/2
One of the best endives ( escarole) for eating in salads as it has a large blonde heart which makes the leaves more tender. We have been asked by a number of our NZ Franchi customers to import this due to its flavour and reputation.
Indiva Scarola Bionda A Cuore Pieno DBO 121/2
Bis Di Cicorie Grumolo Rossa e Verde DBO93/9
Mid/early ancient leaf chicory that you 'cut and it comes again'. Forms the beautiful characteristic rosette-shaped heads late in the season with the cold. Sow 1cm in depth from spring to autumn and harvest during the winter months. Looks spectacular when used in a salad dish.
12g approx 6000 seeds
Bis Di Cicorie DBO 93/9
Chicory Da Taglio Bionda a Foglie Larghe DBO40/25
Light green cutting Chicory with a mild taste which is perfect for making a balanced green salad. Broadcast sow in beds with a spacing of around 30cm after risk of frost. Cover lightly. Cut at about 10cm and succession sow for continuous supply. 12g approx 6000 seeds.
If you find your Chicory is too bitter just soak it in cold salty water for 30 minutes
Cicoria Da Taglio Foglie Larghe DBO40/25
Cicoria Catalogna Pugliese DBO 40/9
A very rare and tasty cicoria from Puglia. Upright rustic plant with long serrated leaves and white ribs. Direct sow or transplant in all but the deepest winter months. This juicy vegetable is primarily grown for salad but can also be cooked. Try it gently boiled in salted water served on top of broad bean puree sprinkled with bread cubes fried in olive oil and garlic.
Cicoria CatalognaPugliese DBO40/9
Cicoria Catalogna Punterelle Brindisina DBO 40/46
A 'punterelle' variety of cicoria which is grown for its stems and buds. It is also sweeter and more delicate than other cicoria. Sow direct or as transpants late summer and spring spacing 15cm apart. The central stem is thicker than other puntarelle. Very crunchy and tasty. Slice inner-core thinly and immerse in cold water until they curl up. Drizzle with lemon anchovy dressing.
Cic Cat Punt Brindisina DBO40/46
Cicoria Pan Di Zucchero DBO 40/10
2 pkts for $7.50 until stocks last; being deleted due to lack of interest
"Sugarloaf" is an upright green heading chicory that forms a romaine-like head of leaves that are closely swirled around one another. Sugar loaf chicories are not as bitter as other chicories,but they're not quite a lettuce either. The head can be cut in half sprinkled with olive oil and grilled or slice into the inner-most leaves and shred for a salad. Best to grow in winter but can also work well in Spring.
Cicoria Pan Di Zucchero DBO 40/10
Cicoria Spadona DBO 40/1
"Sword" chicory is a rustic upright plant with long rounded leaves and thin stems.An excellent salad green with an assertive chicory taste
Cicoria Spadona DBO 40/1
Cicoria Variegata Esposizione Di Castefranco DBOS 40/20
Selezione Speciale. A very high quality venetian variety with a round crunchy closed head. very hardy plant. White radicchio have the same growing season as winter lettuce. Sow 1cm deep from early autumn.
DBOS 40/20 Speciale Castelfranco
Indivia Riccia Cuor D'oro DBO 75/4
2pkts for $7.50 while stocks last
translates to 'golden heart'.An early classic frisee type of endive with a tight head,serrated tough leaves and a golden heart once blanched.Space about 30cm and blanch by gathering up the external leaves with twine 10-12 days prior to harvesting, or exclude light by using a bucket or something similar. Great in soups and salads.
Endivia Riccia cuor d'oro DBO 75/4
Indivia Scarola Cornetto di Bordeaux DBO121/5
“Cone from Bordeaux” is a large upright escarole endive with white ribs and green leaves. Easy to grow. Best for autumn if growing full sized heads. Plant direct at 1cm. Try in a winter salad with fennel,chicory, persimmons and apple,12g approx 5000 seeds.
Indivia Cornetto di Bordeaux DBO 121/5 121/5
Misticanza (Endive) Di Indivie EsaroleDBO 93/3
A mid-early mixture of crisp tasty frilly endives and escarole. Use for salads when young and braised when mature. Can be planted most of the year. Cut and come again varieties.
Misticanza Indivie Escarole 93/3
Misticanza Di Radicchi DBO 93/2
Mid/early. A balanced mixture of 8 varieties of red radicchio and green leaf chicory for a crisp tasty salad mix. A cut and come again mixture so stagger the sowing for a continuous harvest. Sow late summer/early autumn for winter harvesting. Cool weather will always deepen the colour.
12g approx 7000 seeds.
Misticanza Di Radicchi DBO 93/2
Radicchio Rossa Di Treviso (Tardiva) DBOS 40/60
This is the latest of the red Treviso-type radicchios.The tardiva(late harvest) has much more pronounced ribs and splayed leaves.It has more depth of flavour and stronger bitter accents than the earlier (precoce) variety.It easily resists frosts and naturally can be harvested quite late in the season. Please note this variety can take longer than most to germinate.
Sow 1cm late summer to autumn and harvest through winter.
Try it grilled with melted Taleggio or a risotto, the bitterness of the radicchio works with the creamy texture of a well made risotto.
4 gram packet
Radicchio TrevTardiva DBOS40/60
Radicchio Rossa di Treviso DBO40/4
Highly prized and flavoursome Radicchio rossa di Treviso is one of Italy's culinary treasures; where it is only grown near Treviso. Has a very pleasant bitterness, upright red and white striped leaves. Needs cold temperature to turn it red. Remove outer leaves before eating. Use hearts raw in salads, sprinkle olive oil and grill, or in a risotto with Italian sausage and parmesan( delicious!) sow in seed trays or direct in summer for winter maturing, has a high resistance to cold. 12g
Cicoria Rossa Di Treviso DBO40/4
Radicchio Rossa Di Verona DBO40/13
The red radicchio of the Veneto. Ball shaped radicchio with thick white ribs. This variety is very frost hardy and needs cool weather to improve the trademark bitter-sweet flavour and bold colour. Apparently, this very tender and crunchy variety was bred from Rosso di Treviso in the 1950's. Sow 1cm deep from late summer.
Eat raw in salads,cooked in risotto or grilled and splashed with fruity olive oil.
12 gram packet
Radicchio Ros Di Verona DBO40/13
Radicchio Variegata Di Chioggia DBO40/23
A mid-early variegated radicchio that is very easy to grow.Ball shaped with dark red leaves and white splashes. The colour will become more intense in the cooler weather. Will initially grow masses of loose leaves and then head up.
Radicchio di Chioggia40/23
Witloof Di Bruxelles DBO 40/8
2 pkts for $7.50 (being deleted)
Cicoria Witloof Di Buxelles produce yellow'chicons' that are very poular in Belgium. Witloof has a mild flavour and crunchy texture. Direct sow in spring. Cut back the foliage and gently lift out the roots. Place in a dark place i.e. soil and sand mixture ensuring the 'chicons' are pointing upright then cover completely with soil mixture. Witloof 'chicons' will be ready in approx 10 weeks.
Witloof DBO 40/8
Radicchio Palla Rossa Precoce DBO 40/68
This radicchio -type chicory has dramatic colour contast. An early variety that forms tight crunchy heads that hold for months. The heads are bright crisp and tender . A good winter variety but its not frost hardy.
Try grilled radicchio risotto with balsamic vinegar
10gram packet=lots of seeds
Radicchio Palla Rossa Precoce DBO 40/68
Artichoke ( Carciofo) Violetto Precoce DBO21/2
Violet artichoke from Tuscany. Spineless,thornless medium size artichoke with delicately nutty flavoured, fleshy buds and rich violet colouration. These buds are less iron flavoured than the larger varieties. The edible bits are delicious sliced finely and added to salad leaves, a little dressing and shavings of Parmigiano-Reggiano. Sow under cover in early spring / autumn and transplant, or sow direct into well drained soil. Thin to 80cm spacing. Artichokes are very attractive plants so can be easily incorporated into a non-vegetable garden space.
3g approx 70 seeds
Artichoke (Carciofo) Green Globe DBO 21/9
This is a traditional green globe artichoke which is new to Franchi in 2014. It is as expected quite a large plant that is hardy. The shape is conical. The buds are bigger than the Violetto.
Artichoke Green Globe
Artichoke (Carciofo) Violetta
Asparagus (Asparago)Argenteuil DBO 5/1
A French heirloom aspagarus developed in the 18th century. It grew around a convent founded by Charlemagne in the 7th century. Argenteuil is synonymous with white asparagus. Produces large 2cm thick silver green/purple spears earlier in the spring than most varieties. Plant seed to produce crowns in the first year and then move to a more permanent position. 1st year leave it but the 2nd year cut half. Can adapt to a wide variety of free draining soils. Needs full to semi-sun. Will produce for 20 years.
4 gram packet approx 200 seeds
Asparago Argenteuil DBO5/1
Black Tuscan Kale (Cavolo Nero) di Toscana DBO35/7
Kale. A native of Tuscany also known as Black Kale. Franchi Lacinato Nero di Toscana is considered the best quality Kale available by many International chefs. A dark green colour that turns almost black when cooked. . Essential vegetable to make the Florentine National dish Ribollita Toscana. Try pan fried potato and chorizo with cavolo nero . Develops more flavour as it grows so choose leaves about 20cm. Thrives in the cooler temperatures. Tuscan kale is more tender than most kales so use the baby leaves in a salad mix. Direct plant 2-3 seeds every 20cm, and thin to one plant.
“Sprouting Broccoli from Calabria” is a tender variety with a superior taste, and produces plenty side shoots. Compact med sized head. Sow in seed boxes and transplant or direct sow 50cm apart from summer through to spring. Allow 60 –80 days to pick. Small florets will grow back after harvesting. 7g approx 1200 seeds.
Friarielli. One of the most sought after,iconic and renowned vegetables of Italy. Fast growing,high quality and depth of flavour. Used traditionally on Pizza in Naples with olives and chillior with sausages When you pick the central flower the plant begins to produce side shoots (spigariello) that have tiny florets. Friarielli is sort of a kind of broccoli which is grown also for immature edible leaves.Neopolitans go crazy for this vegetable! 4 gram packet.
Broccoli Spigariello DBO 25/26
Cabbage (Cavolo Verza) San Michele DBO 33/15
Please note - this cabbage come from an apline region of Italy and requires very cool temps to form a head.
Savoy-type cabbage from a cooler province of northern Italy. Green crinkly tender leaves with some red/purple colour in the centre and a mild sweet flavour. A spectacular- looking plant with a large firm head. The taste improves with the cooler weather. 80-90 days.
Cavolo Verza San Michele DBO 33/
Carrot (Carota) Da Foraggio Jaune Du Doubs DBO 23/40
Dates back to the 16th century. This rustic saffron-yellow French heirloom comes from the town of Doubs in the central East of France. Once used just for forage but then discovered for its culinary quality. A late variety that is a good reliable producer. The long tapered roots have a crisp texture and a lingering sweet flavour. Colour is more pronounced when cooked. Plant directly 1cm deep into prepared friable soil, spring to early summer in rows 15-20cm apart. Thin to 8-10cm and keep weed free.
8 gram packet
Carota Jaune Du Doubs DBO 23/40
Cauliflower ( Cavolfiore) Romanesco DBO30/51
“The cauliflower of Roma” also called Broccoli Romanesco but Franchi classifies it as a cauliflower. Light lime -green long pointed heads that spiral into a point. It has a sweet nutty taste. Plant in fertile soil in late summer for autumn–winter picking. 4g approx 1000 seeds.
Cauliflower (cavolfiore) Di Jesi DBO 30/15
"Cauliflower from Jesi" is a very old regional variety from Le Marche. It is a very early (around 65 days) vigorous plant with long ribbed leves.The head is of medium size with creamy-white spiralling florets. A good early variety for autumn sowing. 4 gram pkt
Cavolfiore Di Jesi DBO30/15
Cauliflower (Cavolfiore) Di Sicilia Violetto DBO 30/29
Regional Cauliflower variety from Sicily. This is a vigourous plant with broad grey- green leaves and an awesome purple head. Sadly, after cooking this colour diminishes. Plant for harvest in spring or autumn. Direct sow or 5 week transplants. Will form side shoots after the main head is cut.Around 80 days
Cavolfiore Di Sicilia DBO 30/29
Cauliflower (Cavolfiore) Verde Di Macerata DBO 30/30
A bright lime or apple-green early cauliflower with a compact head from Macerata on the Adriatic coast, known for producing exceptional cauliflowers. Will keep its colour when cooked.Sow Dec-Feb for autumn- winter eating in about 90 days. Good for winter tabbouleh with lots of parsley mint and pomegranate seeds.
Cavolfiore Macerata DBO 30/30
Eggplant (Melanzana) Black Beauty DBO 90/21
An heirloom variety since 1902. This is a mid-early extremely productive eggplant that is a bushy spreading plant. You will need to stake early to support these large tear-drop-shaped purple-black fruits. A good choice of variety if you want to use large slices for a dish. #impressive #eggplant
Eggplant Black Beauty DBO 90/21
Eggplant(Melanzana) tonda bianca sfumata di rosa DBOS 90/43
'Selezione Speciale' Also called Romanesca . Mid/early vigourous bushy plant producing very tasty rounded large white fruits with beautiful lilac shading. Firm white flesh with very few seeds. Direct sow 1cm deep when soil has warmed up or grow from 8 week transplants. Space to 40-50cm and provide support. High yielding in 80 days
Eggplants need sunlight to thrive
3 grams approx 350 seeds
Melanzana Tonda Bianca DBOS90/43
Selezione Speciale. Mid/early variety. The name of this round eggplant translates as "prosperous" because it is a good flavoursome variety for Italian markets. It has shiny lavender-purple skin and the fruits are medium sized with very few seeds. Very high yielding .Around 80 days
Melanzana Prosperosa DBOS 90/15
Eggplant(Melanzana) Violetta Lunga DBO90/1
‘The classic Italian eggplant’
Beautiful glossy deep purple hues. Long slightly curved rustic Italian eggplant grown throughout Italy. It is firmer and a little sweeter than other varieties. Use for traditional dishes such as Melanzana alla Parmigiana or warm Moroccan salad with tomatoes and coriander. Good reliable producer in around 70 days. Grow from 8 week old seedlings or direct sow when soil is warm, space 40 to 50 cm apart and provide support. 4g approx 400 seeds.
Melanzana violetta lunga DBO90/1
Leek (Porro) Di Delft DBO107/12
2 pkts for $7.50
A late variety of leek with thick white stems. A very hardy plant with excellent resistance to low temperatures. 6 gram packet
Leek (Porro) Di Delft DBO 107/12
Onion ( Cipolla) Tropea Rosso Lunga DBO43/25
Mid-early variety. Red/pink onions from Tropea in Southern Italy have been famous for centuries. These elongated bulbs with pinkish skin are great for eating raw and also for mkaing onion jam. They will keep for a few months. Direct seed or transplant in spring. Thin to 10cm apart in rows.
4 grams approx 1000 seeds
Cipolla DBO4 3/25
Onion ( Cipolla) Tropea Rosso Tonda DBO43/22
Mid to late variety. The most famous of all Italian red onions and possibly the highest-quality red onion in Italy. This Calabrian variety is very sweet and ideal for making onion paste and for stuffings. Changes from white when young to red in maturity It stores very well in a shady cool room. Sow in Spring and Autumn. 5g approx 1250 seeds.
Onion ( Cipolla) Piatta Di Bergamo DBO 43/1
Mid early variety"Flat onion of Bergamo" (Franchi's home) is a small flat cipolla-type reddish brown onion with pinkish- white flesh. An excellent storage onion. Can be used for cooking or really great as small pickles. Grow from transpants or direct sow.
Cipolla Piatta di Bergamo 43/1
Onion (Cipolla ) Barletta DBO 42/1
A small white salad onion with a bulb about 2cm in diameter and slightly flat at maturity. Direct sow in spring after last frosts and keep well weeded. The thinnings can be used in salads.
Cipolla Barletta DBo42/1
Onion (Cipolla) Ramata Di Milano DBO43/3
Large golden straw-brown onion from Milan. Top-shaped tapering onion with crisp white flesh. Stores very well
Cipolla Ramata Di Milano DBO 43/3
Onion (cipolla) Rossa Lunga Di Firenze DBO42/23
Long torpedo-shaped heirloom onion from Florence that is so regional ts not found in any other part of Tuscany. Sweet flesh with high sugar content. Around 10cm in length.
Direct seed or transplant in spring and keep weed free.Great grilled or eaten raw in salads
Rossa Lunga Di FirenzeDBO 42/23
Onion (Cipollotto) Da Mazzi DBOS42/34
Selezione Speciale. Bunching onions with long slim white stems. The Italians call this a chive but its more like a spring onion. Sow this fast grower from July to December in succession for a longer cropping period. Has excellent flavour.
Cipollotto da Mazzi DBOS42/34
Onion(Cipolla) Rossa SavoneseDBO 42/26
From Savona along the Ligurian coast in the north of Italy. This mid early red/pink onion is mild so great to eat raw or makes pastes. The shape is flattish- round.
Cipolla Rossa Savonese 42/26
Pepper Piccante Calabrese DBOS97/115
Franchi Selezione Speciale early very hot variety from Calabria. A cherry chilli pepper with round, red fruit about 5cm in diameter. Quite a hot pepper and previously called “Satan’s kiss”. This chilli pepper has full round flavour to compliment the heat , Use fresh, dry or pickle.
Like all peppers start off from Spring in a protected area sowing them 1cm in depth. They must have light and heat at this stage. Italian peppers can take a little longer to germinate . Transplant outside after the last frosts.2.5g approx 300 seeds.
Peperone Calabrese DBOS97/115
Peppers (Peperone) Friggitello DBO97/101
Famous Neapolitan sweet eat-all pepper also known as Friariello. A crisp sweet pepper thats also good to pick when green and sauteed or added to salads Turns brilliant red when mature. A very productive plant. 1.5g pkt
Peperone Frigatello DBO97/101
Pumpkin(Zucca) Marina di Chioggia DBO145/2
An heirloom pumpkin from the seaside area of Chioggia ( key-ohj-jah ) near Venice. Abundant turban-shaped medium-large size fruits that are deep blue-green. The deep yellow orange flesh is very sweet but not sugary,the texture creamy smooth. The deep orange flesh is used for pumpkin ravioli and gnocchi in northern Italy . Excellent storer. Franchi have provided us with the BEST tasting pumpkin ever! Plant seeds 2cm deep early spring, in hills. 4g approx 13 + seeds.
Black salisfy is similar in taste to a subtle flavoured artichoke with a hint of asparagus. You can use the young leaves in salad. A winter vegetable that grows with very long tapering roots at 25cm. Direct sow 2cm deep while soils are still warm for winter or late winter harvesting.
Salsify Scorzonera Noire DBO 122/1
Spinach (Spinacio) Matador DBO 127/13
This spinach comes very highly recommended by our Franchi colleagues in the U.S. A dark green hardy plant with very smooth leaves. Excellent taste. Ideal for salad leaf mixtures.
14 gram pkt
Spinach(spinacio) DBO 127/13
Spinach (Spinacio)Merlo Nero DBO127/20
‘Blackbird’ small brilliant green open-pollinated Spinach which is slow to bolt. Ready for picking in around 50 days. Direct sow autumn and spring and pick when leaves are young and tender. Avoid the heat of mid summer. Holds together well when cooked. #spinach and ricotta lasagna 14g approx 1000 seeds.
Zucchini Fiorentino DBO146/52
A long green zucchini and quite deeply ribbed. Fiorentino is a large robust plant and a good producer of firm,fleshy fruits with a great nutty flavour. Lots of flowers for stuffing and remember to pick when quite small to fully appreciate the trademark flavour of this variety.
A favourite of many chefs
10 gram packet
Zucchino Fiorentino DBO146/52
Zucchini Romanesco DBO146/11
a foodies favourite.. a good producer of grey/green fruit with characteristic ribs. Excellent creamy,sweet flesh and good texture. Produces many flower blossoms over a long season. This zucchini does not turn watery when big however for best flavour pick when quite small. Stuff flowers with the many options available including fresh ricotta finely chopped spinach and nutmeg. 10 g pkt
Zucchino Romanesco DBO146/11
Zucchino Striato D'Italia DBO 146/2
This is classic tasty striped zucchini. Dark green with light green stripes and small ribbing. A productive bushy plant with med size fruits yielding up to 5 k of fruit per plant. plant 2cm deep after last frosts. Does well in cool weather. Pick when the fruits are no more than10cm to appreciate the full flavour either raw or cooked. Try Zucchini trifolati
10g approx 50 seeds
Zucchino Striata D' Italia DBO146/2
Pumpkin(Zucca) Butternut Rugosa DBO145/15
Butternut Rugosa . A large Italian herloom butternut that is pinched at the waist with ribbed wrinkled skin. The flesh is fine-grained and flavoursome with a hint of chestnut flavour. Butternut Rugosa is a good keeper. Ready in about 85-100 days.
Try white bean,ginger and butternut soup
Pumpkin (Zucca )Butternut Rugosa 145/15
Zucca Marina di Chioggia (pumpkin)
Cima Di Rapa (turnip top) Sessantina DBO41/4
Broccoli-type turnip tops which you can harvest in 60 days. Mid-early rustic plant producing lots of tender sprouting florets.The flavour is turnipy with mustard overtones.
60 day ( and 40) Cima di Rapa can be sown every month for five months from around Feb-June.
Ensure you pick before the florets turn yellow and go to seed.
Cima Di Rapa Sessantina DBO41/4
Cima Di Rapa (turnip top) Quarantina DBO41/2
Broccoli type Turnip tops. A bitter-sweet taste that Italians love. Use in the well-known pasta dish from Puglia, Orecchiette with turnip tops (cime di rapa) and chilli. A small plant 20 to 25cm high, ready in about 40 days. Succession plant for continuous harvest. Pick as heads form as they quickly go to seed. If left too long it will go stringy when cooked. 15g approx 6000 seeds.
Cima Di Rapa( Quarantina) DBO41/2
Kohlrabi (cavolo rapa ) Di Vienna Bianco DBO 32/1
Early white Kohlrabi that has a distinctive mild-flavour reminiscent of celeriac and radish making it a good foil for other flavourings. Green leaves with a bulb of sweet white flesh. The edible part of the plant is the above surface bulb it forms. The swollen stem has an abundance of vitamin c and d . Grow in spring and autumn and pick when small (size of a tennis ball )for best taste. Good grated or cooked quickly. Sow 3 times seed diameter and space 10-20cm in sunny position.
Cavolo Rapa Kohlrabi DBO 32/1
Kohlrabi (cavolo rapa) Purple Vienna DBO 32/3
Early purple Kohlrabri is a spherical vegetable with leaf topped stems that protrude from the base bulb that has red skin and tender white flesh. Flavour is similar to broccoli stems celeriac or even radish. The edible part of the plant is the above-surface bulb it forms. Pick when the size of a tennis ball (no larger) A shallow rooted plant that needs regular watering. Plant in full sun. It needs to grow fast to be enjoyed at its best. The bulb can be eaten raw,steamed stir- fried. We love it raw grated into a salad. Kohlrabi chips are delicious.
5 gram packet
Cavolo rapa Kohlrabi DBO 32/3
Rampion ( Raperonzolo) DBOS 111/1
Rampion or ramps. The rampion is what Rapunzel of Grimm's Fairy tales fame craved. The edible roots have great flavour and the tops can also be used as a green. The flavour is sweetish with a slight pungency The roots grow up to around 20cm. This ancient root vegetable is finding favour again with more experimental chefs worldwide. Please note this seed is very fine and small, so take care when handling.
Rampion ( Raperonzolo) DBOS 111/1
Salsify (Scorzobianca) a fiore blu DBO 123/2
White salsify with "blue flower". Long tapered roots to around 30cm. This white salsify (looks like a parsnip ) has a great taste and texture sort of akin to asparagus. The attractive blue flowers and the young leaves can be eaten raw in a salad mix. Direct sow late summer for winter-spring harvesting. Worth a try and one of the most overlooked winter veges around.
Salsify Scorzobianca DBO 123/2
Zucchino Striato D'Italia
Basil (Basilico) Bolloso Napoletano DBO13/8
‘Blistered leaf from Naples’ Famous Neapolitan large leafed basil with intense aromatics and flavour. Has many uses. In Italy it is sometimes used for wrapping Mozzarella balls. Sow outside or transplant late spring into a sunny position. 8g approx
Basil (Basilico) Foglie di lattuga DBO13/3
‘Lettuce leaf basil’ has huge leaves the size of your hand and a mild taste and does best in a warm sunny position in light fertile soil. Sow outside or transplant in late spring and thin to 1cm deep x15cm apart. This is not a basil to make Pesto but instead use for wrappimg.
8g approx 3000 seeds.
Basil (Basilico) Italiano Classico DBO13/2
Everyone loves basil. This is classic basil at its best; brilliant green and highly aromatic. This is the basil to make pesto. Sow outside or transplant late spring, thin to 25x10cm. Basil hates cool weather so ensure you have it in a warm environment.
8g approx 3000 seeds.
Basil Misticanza di Basilico GLBA 13/15
Franchi Golden Line. A superior mixture of 12 different basil varieties with varying coloured leaves for flavour and aromatics including cinnamon,limone,thai siam,classico and red rubin. Ideal for growing in containers. 10g packet
Misticanza Basilico GLBA13/15
Capers (Cappero )DBA 20/2
A native to the Mediterranean, Capers require a dry heat and intense sunlight to thrive. Put the seeds in foil pkt in cool part of fridge for four weeks prior to germination. Germination can take some time so be very patient. With tweezers carefully grip the seed and rub one side with an emery board a few times. This will wear off the some of the thick coat to reach the germ within.Soak seeds in warm water overnight. Then, blot the seeds on kitchen paper and plant into moist cacti and succulent mix.Cover lightly.Insulate the seed tray on top with layer of damp newspaper and keep warm until germination begins. A heat pad will work well. THANKS TO THE LATE GREAT VIRGIL EVETTS FOR THIS GERMINATION ADVICE
They may have flowers the first year but it is more likely to flower the second season. After the plant is established they can live for decades. Caper plants are very attractive and highly aromatic.
Capers are ideal pickled for later use in antipasto or added to seafood pasta dishes
Cappero DBA 20/2
Chervil (Cerfoglio)Comune DBA36/1
Chervil has a subtle aniseed flavour reminiscent of tarragon, like a subtle blend of parsley and tarragon. A hardy biennial plant best grown as an annual. Direct sow 1cm deep in late spring-summer and keep out of direct sun. If the leaves turn pinkish the plant is too hot and all the flavour is lost. Will self-seed freely.
Chervil is at its best when matched with delicate foods such as fish,soft fresh cheeses or Asparagus.
8 gram packet
Cerfoglio Comune DBA36/1
Chives (Erba Cipollina)DBA53/1
Early well-known annual. Chives have thier own delicate onion flavour which is why its doesn't survive lengthy cooking. Easy to grow in full sun and rich moist soil. Keep clipped to stimulate growth. The edible chive flowers can be used in salads.
Erba Cipollina DBA 53/1
French Thyme Timo Di Provenza DBA 132/2
A staple in Mediterranean cooking. Provence thyme is so much more aromatic and sweeter than English Thyme. Perennial thyme needs to be planted in spring in an area that gets full sun. Preserve by drying or freezing. I cannot stress enough how good this thyme is in cooking.
Timo Di Provenza DBA132/2
Marjoram gentile (sweet marjoram) DBA88/1
Sweet Marjoram has sweet ,mild aromatics similar to oregano but not as strong and aggresive and will grow to 80cm as a perennial in warmers areas. Plant under cover in early spring or direct in warm weather. At its peak just before it flowers.Fresh tomato salad sprinkled with marjoram is a simple but delicious combination. Its sweet flavour is great in frittatas and goats cheese
1g approx 4000 seeds.
Oregano (Origano) DBA94/1
No Neapolitan cooking is complete without the use of origano whether fresh of dried. It is a staple in Italian cuisine. Retains its flavour in hot dishes if it’s added toward the end of cooking.
A robust plant with large leaves and a robust flavour to match. Very easy to grow. Pick the leaves in the morning, once the sun warms up the leaves they begin to lose the oils that provide taste and aroma. 0.5g approx 6000 seeds
Peppermint (Menta) Piperita DBA 92/1
There are many types of mint but this is the one most used in Italy. This hardy perennial is easy to grow from seed, so direct sow in Spring. The flavour is a not as robust as many other peppermints. Try making homemade peppermint syrup that is very popular in the north of Italy. The syrup can be used for flavouring drinks, cakes, desserts.
Best suited for pots as it spreads very quickly in the soil.
5 gram packet
Menta Piperita DBA 92/1
St Johns Wort (Iperico erba di san giovanni) DBO75/50
A perennial plant with extensive creeping rhizomes.Stems are erect,leaves yellow -green: the flowers with 5 petals are bright yellow. Sow almost year round with the exception of high summer temps.Plant in a sunny position with a light cover of soil,then gently water in. Used mainly for medicinal purposes.0.5g
Iperico erba di san giovanni DBO 75/50
Tarragon(Dragoncella) DBA 52/1
An intense flavoured Tarragon(artemisia dracunculus) which has a slender soft leaf as opposed to the large Russian leaf variety.Tarragon is very useful in many culinary dishes for its pronounced aniseed /liquorice/fennel flavour. Start seeds off under cover and plant out in a sunny position early spring. Seed can take time to germinate so patience is required. Perfect with chicken,fish and egg dishes. Plant will grow to around 1 metre in height and spreads. French Tarragon's Latin name is dracunculus and Tarragon in Italian is dragoncello 0.3g
Tarragon (Dragoncello)DBA 52/1
The classic perennial herb. Rosemary grows very well from seed but can be slow to germinate(2-3 weeks)
Sorrel (Acetosa) DBA1/1
This sorrel has large soft green leaves that can be used as additional leaf for a salad mix or because sorrel's lemony tartness is so pronounced it adds interest to foods like,fish,eggs,potatoes. Try sorrel soup. Best to direct sow in early spring in a sunny postion
Sorrel (Acetosa)DBA 1/1
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