It’s almost that time of year again!!! Now is the time you should be planning out your garden if you haven’t already done so! But more importantly, now is the time to be buying your seeds if you need to.
Buying seeds can get expensive over time
Seed saving is a terrific way to reduce costs but not everyone wants or cares to do it. For some people, it’s just easier to buy the seeds as needed. I know! I used to be one of them. But these days I find I am more interested in seed saving and I am slowly creating a small but lovely collection of seeds. The only time I really buy new seeds now is when I am planting something new. I’ll plant what I need for consumption, then I’ll also plant a few extra just for the purpose of saving the seeds. I’m fortunate enough to have the space to do so, and I totally get that not everyone does. I encourage you to obtain your seeds however you deem the best possible way for you, but now’s the time to get them!!
When I order seeds, I have only a few spots that I shop. My first stop is always Vesey Seeds which is located in PEI, Canada. I love their selection and their prices. They sometimes offer some nice little perks as well like free shipping, that’s a big win for me! Next, I’ll go check out Richters Herbs, these guys are located in Ontario, Canada and have the best selection of herbs I have ever seen! In some cases, their prices may be slightly higher than the competition, but their shipping rates are much lower and I also receive the product much faster so for me, it’s an amazing place to order from as it balances out cost and time wise.
While I have never ordered from them myself, I also hear that West Coast Seeds (BC, Canada), Heritage Harvest Seeds (MB, Canada), Hope Seeds (NS, Canada), and Matchbox Garden & Seed Co. (ON, Canada) are also very good.
Now, depending on where you live and what zone you are in, you may or may not be able to start planting already. However, here in Ontario, we still have a while to go before we can start our seeds. So now is the time we plan.
Now a few months ago I wrote a blog about planning your garden. You can plan at any stage. I started planning in November (which is late for me) and while my layout remains the same, some important details have since changed. Instead of 12’x4’x15″ raised beds with crop cages, instead, I am going to go with hay bales with crop cages instead. Not only is it more cost effective for me but because we may soon be faced with the possibility of having to relocate, we want something less… permanent. We currently li- ve right in the middle of a small town and we plan to eventually move out to the country, have a small farm, go the whole nine yards. Now we only planned for this move in 5 years once our kids are in college. But in light of recent personal events, we may find ourselves relocating sooner than we thought, so I don’t want to invest thousands of dollars into a new garden build only to have to move away in a year or two and leave it all behind. So for us, right now… hay bales are much cheaper and a lot less permanent.
So, before I get any further off-topic, let me get back to seed starting. When you start your seeds, start them indoors 4-8 weeks before the last frost. Now this will depend on your zone (again) and it will also depend on the seeds you are starting, so check your seed packages! There is a great little site that can help you understand your last frost date in your city to help you project when you should be starting your seeds. Bookmark this site and use it every year! Once you’ve got some germination going, make sure your beds are made and just lying in wait. Once your starter plants are 4″ or taller and you’re past your last frost date, if the weather calls for it, get those babies in the ground (or in your bales) and nurture them into a beautiful and bountiful harvest!
If you have any questions about starting plants from seeds or just gardening in general, don’t be shy to reach out! I’d love to hear from you!