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New Vegetables from D.T.Brown

November 23, 2012 Seeds 9 Comments

Hello, my name is Tim Jeffries, General Manager at D.T.Brown.

Our company began more than a century ago supplying market gardeners locally in the north west before going on to sell vegetable seeds by mail order to allotmenteers and home gardeners throughout the country.  Its founder David Brown based his business on supplying top-quality seeds at value-for-money prices. 

Our ethos is still the same today, and D. T. Brown is often mentioned by the gardening press as representing great value for money. 

It’s a reputation of which I am proud.

Our trial ground serves two main purposes – to ensure our seed stocks are true to type and as we describe them to our customers, and to test new varieties of vegetable seeds from around the world to see if they offer significant improvements on or differences from varieties we already offer. 

Tim Jeffries picks runner beans

Tim Jeffries picks runner beans


Seed breeding is a worldwide business, and we believe it is important that we are happy that all new varieties perform well in British conditions before we add them to our range.  Our small team of experts makes weekly assessments of our trials, noting all favourable and unfavourable characteristics of what we are growing.  Then they have to pass the ultimate test, where we take them home to eat so we can assess their flavour and texture. 

That’s the best part of our jobs!

This year, among our many introductions, are three which are particularly worthy of note. 

Kale Seaweed

Kale Seaweed



Available only from D. T. Brown is Seaweed Kale TZ93339, an intricately leaved variety which resembles Chinese seaweed.  The young leaves are lovely stir-fried or even added to salads.  It is as hardy as other kales and has a long cropping period. 



Squash Butterbush F1

Squash Butterbush F1



Butternut squashes have really caught on recently, and our new variety Butterbush F1 is much more compact growing than most.  Each plant can produce up to five fruits, each weighing up to 1kg, and the plants are suitable for containers and growing bags. 



Carrot Eskimo F1

Carrot Eskimo F1



Carrot Eskimo F1 is just as hardy as its name suggests.  It’s a late maincrop, Nantes-type and can be lifted through autumn and into winter.  The roots are sweet and well coloured, and Eskimo F1 has the bonus of a high tolerance of cavity spot.




    You can view D.T.Brown’s exciting 2013 seed range here




Currently there are "9 comments" on this Article:

  1. Those squashes look great might have to try them on the plot, I havent got space available for tradional squashes so these are ideal! Would love a job with you, best job in the world haha

    • royw says:

      Hi Stuart

      These squashes do look good, as you can see – they’ve been selected for container growing. It’s often a good idea on a plot where space is restricted to grow squash ‘vertically’ ie up a frame. As the fruits grow they will ripen very well with additional support around the fruit of course. This variety looks very compact indeed, I think that we’ll give them a try on our plot later also.

  2. markwillis says:

    I tried “Buttterbush” squash this year – mainly because it was described as being compact – but mine performed very poorly. The four plants I grew were thin and unenthusiastic, and set only one tiny fruit which rotted before it was mature. I know this was probably because of the appalling weather, but it has put me off growing squashes for a while! Next year I will stick with cucumbers, because the ones I had this year (Iznik F1) did very well despite the weather.

    • royw says:

      I think it’s probably a risk to grow outdoors in the UK. Of course, it must be taken else with a fine summer, we’d be cursing ourselves for not having sown/planted any squash. With a protected plot I’m sure that they’d be fine. We’ll be trying some for certain but I could imagine that they’ll be living their lives in a frame.

  3. Hannah says:

    Has anyone else experienced the poor service from DT Brown Seeds Ltd? I placed an order on 7th January for seeds, potatoes and garlic. Still no potatoes and garlic and every week I call up the customer service people say “Sorry madam, we promise it will be with you this week for sure” and then nothing arrives.

    Is the company in some sort of financial problem that they cannot ship out potatoes or garlic bulbs for 6 weeks or are they just incompetent?

    Has anyone else had problems with them?

    • royw says:

      Hi, we’ve sent a copy of this to our contact at DTB and received an immediate response:
      There was a delay in despatching our live product due to the bad weather and we were concerned about it freezing in transit. We do have a message on our website

      We have now resumed a full service however there has been a backlog which should be cleared by the end of the week (weather permitting)

      Our call centre should also be explaining this and I have requested that we ensure that this is the message going out. Please accept our sincere apologies for the distress and inconvenience we have caused.

      Hopefully this will be resolved in a few days, please keep us informed.

  4. kris says:

    Does anyone know what size container the butternut squash pictured above were grown in? im trying to get an idea of what size pots I’ll need thx

    • royw says:

      Hi Kris, if the photo is correct, then that’s a 10litre (2 gallon) container. These plants are heavy feeders and thirsty too in warm weather. They don’t tell you these things on the packets do they! We’d suggest a bigger pot if you want to grow in a pot, with plenty of mulch, both to feed the plant and to retain moisture. Pot size? 25litres (5gallon). We had a good crop of mini-cukes last year in 15litre clay pots, but they needed a lot of regular watering.

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