My Picks

– Posted in: Seeds and Seed Starting

Pathetically, I have finished my order list. I found a bunch of stuff in Territorial that I liked, and I am not too concerned about climate difference. Even though I am 2 hours North of Kathleen, I am a block from Lake Ontario, and fancy myself a barely Zone 5.

Johnny’s is more expensive these days, but I appreciate their selection of cold hardy things, and most of all, their extensive growing information, both the website and the catalog. I try to order from them just to reward their efforts.

I think that was part of my problem with Park’s – they had generic cool weather annual instructions on the packet. Nichol’s Garden Nursery was even worse – the instructions were in the packet, so you had to open the packet, the seeds spilled, etc…

I love Stokes for flowers – you can get single colors for everything, and they are cheap, and give good information.

Select Seeds I love, but I am trying not to look. I am allowing myself 1 sweet pea, 1 poppy, and 2 nasturtiums. What I appreciate most about select seeds is they give little suggestions like “looks great with”. I love to grow plants, but have no sense of what looks good together.

Seeds of Change has the most beautiful photography, and some neat and unique things, and I can’t resist getting a few things from them, even though they are from the Southwest.

I may get somethings from Nichol’s, but most of my herb seeds and a few plants will come from Richter’s in Ontario.

And, of course, Pinetree Seeds ( has great prices on smaller packets of seeds. Some of us find it embarrassing to have so many leftover seeds from previous years. I find that most of them germinate just fine the next year, but you want to be able to get new stuff each year without being embarrassed.

Oh, and Tomato Growers Supply, of course, for when you need early or heirloom in every color of the rainbow. This year, I am getting Marianna’s Peace, for my other sister, Marianne.

And, of course, Cook’s Garden, the Erbetta, which was called for in a Ravioli recipe I made 8 years ago, the Borlotto beans, to make that awesome bean dish from Venice, Costoluto Genovese Tomatoes, which grew so well for me 2 or 3 years ago, and Bull’s Blood Beets, just cause I have to have them, and it was the best price I found.

And Talitha, Fortex string beans – they were awesome!

About the Author

Until recently, Rosemarie Hanson gardened in the alkaline soil of New York’s North Country. Now she gardens in the Finger Lakes region of NY, where the soil is acid and the deer are a plague! She is particularly interested in fragrant plants, old garden roses, tulips, gardening for kids, and kitchen gardens.

Now, the digging and dividing of perennials, the general autumn cleanup and the planting of spring bulbs are all an act of faith. One carries on before the altar of delayed gratification, until the ground freezes and you can’t do any more other than refill the bird feeder and gaze through the window, waiting for the snow. . . . Meanwhile, it helps to think of yourself as a pear tree or a tulip. You will blossom spectacularly in the spring, but only after the required period of chilling.

~Adrian Higgins in The Washington Post, November 6, 2013

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