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I'm a newbie, last year we moved to a house with a lovely south facing garden and it also has a greenhouse and vegetable plot. Feels like all my dreams have come true.
I'm trying to get organised now for next year. This year I've had a go at growing all typres of flowers and vegetables, but I alway feel like I'm just a bit late with sowing my seeds. I'm interested in growing herbs, hanging basket plants, carrots, peas, betroot and parsnips. Maybe next year try potatoes.
So to get organised for next year, I have a folder for my self and trying to make a calander/ diary to inform me as to when to buy seeds and when different seeds need sowing buy.
When do you buy all or most of your seeds? I'm a bit worried to buy too early and find the seeds don't do so well, how good are the sow by dates?
Anything else you can think of to get me organised for the coming year is appreciated. I live in the North East, any advice about planting here and hardy plants alsi welcome.
Thanks in advance
I bought a lot of seeds last September at 50p a packet, I have had no problem with germination. I have just bought seeds for next year in the T&M half price sale.
Yes, I often buy at this time of year when they are half price. Many companies supply their seeds in a foil packet which, if not opened, will keep them fresh for a minimum of a couple of years.
Many gardeners used to send for seed catalogues in the autumn and spend the long winter evenings planning and perusing them before placing their orders.
These days however, it seems more usual for people to buy their seeds from the vast selection available from garden centres or online. I would just add, that garden centres usually stock popular lines & catalogues offer a better selection.
You say 'I'm a bit worried to buy too early and find the seeds don't do so well, how good are the sow by dates?' The sow by dates are pretty reliable, although seed viability varies widely i.e. tomato or beans will remain viable for three or four years, while root-crops such as parsnip should be sown fresh every year....all this comes with experience.
Potatoes should be bought just after Christmas, as they will require a period of about six weeks of chitting before planting out.
Wlkinsons later in the season have a garden sale, I have bought mail order through e-bay-you will usually find that seed packets bought this year will have a sow -by date of 2013 which you don't have to take as gospel
I usually get mine in Wyevale sale . They go to half price then followed by 20p a packet sometimes. Never sure when they do it but have friends who pass the word round all us gardeners when we spot the reductions, usually in August.
Premier seeds direct, an ebay shop is really good. Cheap P&P & lots of seeds per pkt. They do some heritage varieties too.Great for sharing & swapping. Wyevale go down to 50p & then 20p.
I'll second the vote for premier seeds direct on eBay. I also buy online from Moreveg, who are good for small quantities of seeds, low prices, amd a great variety to choose from. And I keep an eye out for free seeds with magazines.
I keep my seeds in a plastic carton with card dividers to sort them into the month when they should be sown. Then when I've sown most of them, I sort them into "Sown/spare" and "Still is use". Then I can't remember whether I decided I was finished sowing parsely or not, so I have to look everywhere for it. Then I find the carrot seeds in the wrong place because I only have the inner packet and I couldn't read what it said on it. Then I find the parsely seeds I thought I'd lost, lurking in the pocket of my gardening jacket. And what are the cornflower seeds doing in with the vegetables? And why did I ever imagine I would grow asters from seed? Have I really had them since 2003, the date on the packet?
As you can see, my system is not yet perfect. I really must go and sort out the seeds once more ...
Just don't put any seeds in the tool-caddy you use around the garden and then leave the whole lot out in the rain, OK?
Lots of good advice here for a fellow new gardener, thank you
Lidl sell seeds starting at 29p a packet and I have always had good results from them.
Things like lettuce, beetroot, spring onions, radish, carrot, beans - all types - always grow from seed - dead easy, dead cheap
Courgettes, squash, pumkins, cucumbers - nearly always grow from seed. Besides a packet of seeds should last you 3 years or so, if you plant 4 seeds with a hope to get at least 2 plants of each, you will still have more them you can eat!!
Toms, chillis, peppers - can be a pain - especially up north, as you need to start them really early (Feb) on a window sill/light box for a hope of good crop - and the seeds can be expensive.
If you want a variety of toms and peppers etc it can be just as cheap to buy a selection of small plants. I have 8 varieties of toms this year 6 of which I hve raised from seed I have bought in previous years. 1 or 2 plants of each makes for a lot of tomatoes!!!!
It sounds like you have loads of space so keep the hanging baskets to flowers. veg prefers being in the soil
Herbs - sow basil, corriander every 2 weeks for a constant supply. Parsley, can be a pain to germinate if grown from seed but still worth a try. Treat your self to a rosemary, lavender & a sage ( well drained soil - add lots of grit and sand to add drainage or they will just curl up and die during the winter)
But it is only early June - still loads of time for growing this year - why wait?