Seeds of Success (maybe!)

Anna at Green Tapestry has apologised in her post today for focussing on snowdrops again, and I too was going to start with an apology (but not for mentioning snowdrops – or ‘Harry’ – not this time, anyway!): for being so enthusiastic (but not, I hope, smug) about my early seed sowing this year. It’s just that it is SO unusual for me to do so, as I normally end up with many of my seed purchases unsown, or plants maturing too late to flower or fruit or leafen-up productively. Most of the sowings are usually of vegetables, thus missing wonderful opportunities to fill the garden with annual colour. I know it’s early days, and it’s one thing sowing seeds in the warmth and comfort of the house, but it’s still a long way from pricking out and potting on, filling the greenhouse with young plants in transit, and finally successfully planting out healthy productive plants. But I have made a start, and sow far, sow good……

DSCN1280In the greenhouse there is rocket and salad leaves, sown at the end of January, and more than ready for thinning out (see, I am not foolproof). I was going to grow the salad leaves in the greenhouse, and may well keep this batch of rocket inside too and pick the leaves while the plants are still young as the seed germinates readily and I can sow more outside. The seed was from a 2 year old open packet and germinated in just a day, proving that seed doesn’t always have to be fresh. I have a feeling the EU are proposing a ban on mixed salad leaf seeds, but this batch are fresh so it can’t be in place yet, unless it is just banning completely different varieties.

DSCN1279Inside the house I have moved 4 of the seed trays planted up a week ago, moving them from the contraption and the warmth of the kitchen to a gravel tray in a cooler room. I have rediscovered 4 large gravel trays in the shed and am putting them back into service, but haven’t yet sourced a large bag horticultural gravel/grit. I have a spare bag of flint chippings but I am not sure if this will do instead – any suggestions? In the tray there are tagetes, cerinthe (they look leggy, but I remember from previous years that this is how they start), achillea and a burgundy poppy. Of the other 3 trays another poppy has germinated and also nicotiana, but no sign of the dwarf penstemon.

Most of the seeds were half price in the annual seed promotion at our local garden centre, so it’s a very small price to pay for the anticipated delights to come – it’s just the nurturing that doesn’t come cheap!

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8 Responses to Seeds of Success (maybe!)

  1. Go ahead, brag a little! You’ve earned it! Eager to see the burgundy poppies in bloom.

    • Cathy says:

      Thanks for the permission! The poppies are ‘Burgundy Frills’ and although an annual they apparently often self-seed, so as long as I look after them they could be a real asset in my borders.

  2. Anna B says:

    Looking good 🙂 What’s going on with the EU ban? Why would they do that? I’d best stock up as mixed leaves are so useful!!

    • Cathy says:

      I know I read it in one of my gardening magazines, and fairly recently too, but I can’t remember the reasoning behind it other than it was the fact that they were mixed seeds – the writer suggested stocking up!

  3. Anna says:

    Oh thanks for the mention Cathy 🙂 Your seeds have certainly got off to a flying start ~ hope that they flourish. I sowed mixed salad leaves in January last year but am rather behind this year and have still to sow. Must get going soon.

    • Cathy says:

      And for yours – all part of blogging! The salad and rocket were planted on one of the freezing days to give me a gardening job I could do without going out of the house! Oh, and don’t tell anyone, but I have just bought a G. woronowii to replace the one I lost… 😉

  4. croftgarden says:

    Not rocket science – mix your own than you can leave out the bits you dislike.
    Oh dear this sounds a bit condescending but I like puns. Sad really.

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