A green space for urban gardeners

Unearthing old seeds for a brand new garden

When I pull out my bag of stockpiled seeds it’s like hitting the reset button on the thrill of a new garden.

I get to pick through the wacky assorted packets I just couldn’t pass up when the grocery store decided to clear its shelves, the splurge purchases from the garden center that were never opened, previously opened envelopes that still have seeds left over, and, not least, the seeds I harvested from gardens past.

The first order of business is creating two stacks — one consisting of seeds for edibles, the other of seeds for flowers.

The edibles cache turned out wonderfully; I found seeds for herbs, lettuce and heirloom tomatoes. In fact, I had an embarrassment of riches and was able to choose from multiple tomatoes for the two pots I’ll eventually set out on the balcony for my container garden. Black plum and Ildi were the heirlooms I decided to plant this year — both small fruit varieties sized right for a small urban space.

I went with a looseleaf lettuce mixture instead of the mesclun I used last time. Dill, Genovese basil, garlic chives, sweet basil, cilantro, sweet marjoram, rosemary,  common chives, tarragon, sage and thyme were unearthed, making parsley the only herb I’m missing.

I also threw in Jalapeno pepper and lemon cucumber seeds to round out my edibles.

I pulled lots of flower seeds to use this year, too — I’ll talk more about them and the colors I’m using in  my next post.

For now, I’m going immediately to the planting. I’ll take a leap of faith and direct sow the lettuce seeds, since our weather has been so great and they can tolerate a little chill.

Everything else I’ll get started in my mini greenhouse. Oh, I almost forgot about the cat grass and cat herbs — I’ll direct seed those as well and cross my fingers that we don’t get a big snow next week.

Happy planting!

Caption: Cherry tomatoes from last year’s garden ripen on the vines.


  Wendy wrote @

can’t wait to see your summer garden. You do such fantastic things on your balcony!

  Linda wrote @

It’s amazing how many seeds we collect without even trying! Between seed swaps, seeds saved from last year’s garden, old seeds from previous years, and quite a few freebies, I didn’t have to buy any seeds this year. Happy planting, Avis!

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