Saturday, July 22, 2006

Seeds V Seedlings

Most of my vegies plants are grown from seeds. The reason being is I prefer the choices offered by seed companies.

Lets look at seedlings first.

Seedlings are a great way to see an instant garden when first starting out vegie growing. With all the excitement of planning your first crop and preparing the area, its nice to see little plants in the freshly dug garden area at the end of the day. Also there is something about watering seedlings after working in the garden.

But by choosing seedlings you are limited in varieties. You can only purchase what the supplier wants to sell. I do on the odd occasion buy seedlings, more so when time is running out and I want to get a crop in before the sowing season it finished. Or I decide to add a late second sowing of a variety.

Lets now look at seeds.

Seeds offer such a wide range of varieties for people to grow in their vegie gardens. From F1 to Heirlooms of all colours and sizes. This is what attracts me the most about seeds.

By sowing and growing heirloom varieties I am able to save my own seeds if I want. Also saves me $$ as I am not purchasing more seeds the following season. If I have an abundance of seeds from what I have saved, I am also able to offer them to fellow gardeners.

Some variety of seeds can not have their seeds saved for the following year. F1 is a form of seed that is treated and unable to be saved for the following year. So, seed saving from these plants is not able to be achieved.

Heirloom seeds are what can be traced back before WW2. There are people who dedicate their time saving these seeds, so they are not lost. For this I am so grateful.

I tend to order my seeds from seed clubs, than going down to the local shop and buying them over the counter.

My reasons are that I prefer the flavours of the old varieties and the chance to save my own seeds. Also where as at a shop you may find 2 or 3 varieties of the same vegetable, in a seed catalogue there may be 6 or more to pick from.

Tomatoes are a great example of varieties out there for choosing from. The tomato can come in so many different shape, sizes and colours, but only a few seed types are sold over the counter.

So as you can see I am a big fan of seeds and seed clubs.

Some clubs offer memberships with a reduced price on their seeds. These clubs can still be ordered from even if not a member. Also some send out a catalogue with great articles in them relating to gardening. I love pouring over the catalogues to see what is available and what is new in gardening.

Listed below are the gardening clubs I have joined or receive catalogues from.

Heirloom Tomato Seed Exchange is a great example of the amount of tomatoes out there for growing. I don't get a catalogue from this site, but I wanted you to see where I was coming from with colour, sizes and varieties.

The Diggers Club

Green Harvest

Eden Seeds

New Gippsland Seeds & Bulbs

Heirloom Tomato Seed Exchange

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