What could be more delightful than sitting by the fire and choosing seed packages for this summer’s produce and flower harvest. I love to read the nitty-gritty information about the new cultivars and the old favorites before making my long list. But then reality sets in, and some of my choices have to be erased because the shipping costs keep growing.
Oh well, there is always the garden centers that provide starts and seeds in April.
In years past the catalogs provided only the hardiness zones and the sun/shade recommendations, but now other information is provided to help make your decisions. In addition, a plethora of symbols are included to help the gardener make choices that affect a plant’s chance to survive.
The additional information may include whether the plant attracts butterflies or honey bees, whether it reseeds itself, whether it blooms again if pruned or if it has good fall color. Tolerance to drought may also be included. But remember, even though the plant may be drought-tolerant, you still need to water it consistently the first season so that proper root growth develops.
When the words “heavy feeder” are listed, you can assume that fertilizer is required at least once a month.
Beware of the words “may be invasive” when choosing ground covers or grasses because these plants are vigorous and usually grow beyond where you want them to.
While some of the seeds that you order can be planted outside in early spring, others may need to be started indoors before the growing season. For those started indoors, remember you will need an area with direct sun or growing lights. You will also need starter seed medium and a lot of patience.
“A garden is always a series of losses set against a few triumphs, like life itself.”
– May Sarton