Choose the right variety for your garden! Botanical Interests' seed packets help you make decisions with information at your fingertips.
When shopping, you're probably thinking about your garden space. The front of our packets answer the basic questions right away, including sun exposure, growing season, bloom periods, and days to harvest. We also tell you briefly, why we love this variety and think you will, too.
The back of the packet tells you whether you should start inside or sow outside, and when to sow based on your average last frost date. The plant tag (which you can cut out and secure to a garden stake) tells you exactly how to sow the seeds-how deep into the soil and how far apart. The reverse side of the plant tag shows an image of the seedling to help you identify it when it emerges.
Once your seeds are sown, open up your packet and you will find even more information about growing your plants, such as how and when to fertilize or transplant. Get even more inspired by the history of the plant, recipes, and tips on keeping your cut flowers and harvested vegetables fresh.
Having the right information is the first step in being a successful home gardener!
Botanical Interests seeds are about to arrive on our sales floor. Our good friends there sent some helpful info on starting onions:
Onion seeds should be started indoors (with the exception of the South) 10 to12 weeks ahead of your average last spring frost, and transplanted out 4 to 6 weeks before your average last spring frost. Leeks and shallots also follow the onion rule- the bigger the transplant, the bigger the potential yield, so start these early (8 to 10 weeks before average last spring frost). Shallots are cold hardy and can also be transplanted out in the fall, and over-wintered from Alaska to Hawaii to S. Florida.
Growing onions from seed versus starter plants offers a wider variety, is less expensive, and gives you more control over growing conditions and inputs like fertilizer or pesticides. Plus, we are all itching to get our hands dirty again!
Tips for growing onions, leeks, and shallots
Bulbing onions require special attention at sowing because their growth is triggered by day length (latitude). Understanding what varieties grow best in your area is the first step to success.
Gardeners know that their gardening efforts will reap the most rewards with perennial plants. In nature, perennials flower and produce seed, and then that seed is dispersed usually in summer or fall, germinating either in the fall or the following spring. Below are four reasons you will benefit from sowing perennials in fall.
5 Steps to Harden Off Seedlings
Hardening off is the process of getting indoor-started seedlings accustomed to the outdoor environment by gradually exposing them to daily shifts in temperature, light, and water. Below are some general guidelines to help your seedlings get settled in to their outside garden bed.
By following these steps and referring to each Botanical Interests seed packet for specific instructions on when to start the transplant process, you're plants will be growing steadily in their outdoor garden bed in no time.
There has been a 90% drop in the population of the Monarch Butterfly in the United States over the past 20 years - and there is something gardeners can do to make a big difference in the demise.
We all recognize the iconic Monarch butterfly with its majestic orange and black wings. Butterflies are more than just beautiful; they are beneficial to the environment and your garden. Butterflies pollinate plants that produce about one-third of the food that we eat. They flutter from plant to plant drinking nectar, and as they move, they take pollen with them. The pollen is deposited on other plants, helping with the continuation and growth of many plant species. The presence of butterflies also signals a healthy environment. Because they are very sensitive to pesticides, if you keep an organic garden, chances are that butterflies and other beneficial insects like ladybugs and bees, which eat plant-damaging insects like aphids, will be present as well. That's good for the overall life and health of your garden!
Unfortunately, the butterfly we all know and love is losing its habitat, specifically milkweed, to modern farming methods and population development. The Monarchs are the only North American butterflies that make a 3,000-mile migration to Mexico and California for the winter, taking 6-8 generations to complete the journey. The fragmentation of milkweed in their migratory path is significant because milkweed is the only host plant where Monarchs lay their eggs, and the sole food source for their larvae. With fewer host plants, their population is suffering as a result-90 percent decline over the last 20 years. Their population decline is so significant that the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is reviewing to determine if the butterfly should be classified as "threatened" under the Federal Endangered Species Act.
As home gardeners, we can help to replenish the butterfly habitat by sowing milkweed/butterfly flower from our friends at Botanical Interests. Our goal - Butterfly flower in every garden!
The first sprouts in our UCP Seguin Grown program of organically grown edibles are starting to show their tiny little leaves to the light.
It's always an exciting experience to watch seeds turn into sprouts and turn into full-grown plants, an experience those of us who work here get to see all the time, especially as spring approaches.
Stop in and see the little sprouts for yourself. It can only mean that spring and warmer weather is right around the corner!