Look at all those seeds just waiting for a ride on a summer breeze!
It's ironic: what is a success story for a weed can be a bit of a horror story
for the average gardener.
All that progeny just looking for the smallest opening-
that empty patch of soil in amongst all those fancy garden flowers!
Plants in the garden can sometimes seed prolifically too.
Let it slip your mind to cut back your chives in June and you may live to regret it!
Even though I am fairly vigilant, it seems I am forever
pulling out little chive seedlings.
Sunflowers seeds seem to work in league with backyard birds. I started with a few plants two
summers ago and now sunflowers are popping up all over the place.
Sadly other garden plants never seem to self-seed.
I'd be thrilled to find some Balloon flowers seedlings (Platycodon grandiflorus) sprouting along the white picket fence, but in all the years I have grown them, I haven't found a single one!
So this year I decided to collect the seeds and give them a helping hand.
Maybe if I give them a perfect growing conditions, they'll be more successful.
Seeds can be amazingly beautiful. These floss on these wildflower seeds is as light as air.
In amongst the wild yellow tansy, they sparkle in the sun.
On the other hand, these False Indigo (Baptisia) seeds come in rather
sinister looking packaging.
And these clematis seed heads make me think of hairy spiders.
They're kinda creepy don't you think?
It seems to me that the appearance of some seeds must be a matter of survival.
It is hard to believe that something this pretty...
...could become something this ugly.
But actually, it's a really clever strategy.
Who would want to eat something that looks this unappetizing?
It's foxgloves that have got me hooked on growing flowers from seeds.
They're biennial so you have to grow them the first summer to have flowers in the second.
I have also fallen in love with biennial Canterbury Bells, annual Lavatera,
and the delicate white and blue flowers of Love-in-the Mist (Nigella).
This fall I have been harvesting seeds to make more of my favourite plants. These Allium 'Millenium' were one of the most beautiful flowers in my garden in mid-August.
So I saved some seeds for myself and some to share with gardening friends.
I've dried them and now they are ready to go into my homemade seed packets.
I use small coin envelopes (# 3 coin envelopes available at Staples) for my seed packets.
I even created my own seed labels using a 2" x 4" transparent Avery mailing label (Avery 18663). It is super easy to download a template and print up your labels on a home computer.
So friends will find in their Christmas cards a mix of seeds that might include
some 'Baby Joe' Pye Weed and....
....seeds from Joe Pye Weed, Eupatorium altissimum 'Prairie Jewel'.
I know that the plants grown from my Helenium seeds will not be true to their fancy hybrid parents. (They will only come true when propagated from cuttings.)
But it could be interesting!
Who knows what will pop up next spring: perhaps a through
back to the hybrid's parents or grandparents?
Some plants I already have in such abundance there is no need to collect seed.
I am sharing these seeds too- this time with the birds and other creatures
that inhabit my garden each winter.