questions..

michael1846(6)August 6, 2014

Just a few things ...
When do you guys buy your seeds for winter sowing? In the fall or in the winter? Will the seeds go bad if they are in the house until jan in the warm house and suddenly put out in the cold? Also my candy tuft has a flower...just one does any one else have one with a flower? And what do you guys use as mulch I am currently un-mulched and I want something that wont smother growth but make everything look neat( pine needles) thanks for the answers :)

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dbarron(z7_Arkansas)

Whenever I think of what I want and make up a substantial enough order (or whenever I decide I needed to plant something yesterday). I keep seed in the freezer....it will keep almost indefinitely there.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 8:47AM
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river_crossroads z8b Central Louisiana

Pine needles aka pinestraw = green and SUSTAiNABLE! Mother Nature will bless you. Fresh pinestraw falls like leaves in the fall. You might try to hire friends' children or grandchildren to rake up theirs & sell to you or ask around for friends who will let you come rake up yourself if pine trees grow in your area. Congratulations on your green lifestyle!

Nov 15 is my order goal before Xmas rush, want some for Winter Solstice Dec 21. I keep seeds next to Rx meds, cool, dry. Forum members say they keep for years!

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 9:04AM
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gardenweed_z6a

I buy seeds when I find the ones I'm looking for, generally in the winter for winter sowing. The seeds won't "go bad" in the warm house since they're not actively sprouting or experiencing the combination of warmth + moisture + growing medium (soil) that triggers them to sprout. Each seed type has a finite lifespan altho' it has been shown that some can live for much longer than their published shelf life.

My winter sown candytuft blooms every year but it doesn't have blooms this late in the season.

I mulch my garden beds with shredded pine bark spread over layers of recycled corrugated cardboard to suppress weeds. This generally prevents reseeding of my perennials but I like the finished look and am willing to forgo "volunteer" plants.

The link below describes winter sowing and offers helpful tips/ideas/suggestions to enable beginners.

Here is a link that might be useful: Winter Sowing

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 9:28AM
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ryseryse_2004

Perennial seeds can be kept in the freezer but many annual ones will be killed by freezing. Seeds will keep for many years as long as they are kept dry and cool. A refrigerator drawer is perfect for this. I have one specifically for seeds. I put them in paper coin envelopes and then in zip lock baggies.

I have daylily and tomato seeds that are more than 10 years old that germinate just like fresh.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 10:43AM
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pitimpinai(z6 Chicago)

Hi Michael,
I buy seeds whenever I need them or when I see the ones I am interested in. I used to keep my seeds in the fridge, but as my seed collection grew, I just keep them in snack bags and lined them up in a tray in the basement. I still keep my most treasured seeds in the fridge, though.

I use shredded leaves, woodchips, and horse manure to mulch my garden. The horse manure I get is generously mixed with stall bedding made of rather fine woodchips, so it makes fantastic mulch.

I have not bought any mulch ever since a generous gardenweb member led me to the recycle center and horse stable in her village 10 years ago. Since then I have directed several friends to the mulch piles.

A friend said she had some weeds growing as a result of the manure but I have not found any weeds growing from the manure because I always go behind the pile to dig out the most aged part of the pile.

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 10:53AM
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michael1846(6)

Great :) I will buy seeds and keep them in the freezer. I just didn't want them to go bad. I try to stray away from annuals because I hate replacing them! (Also I don't know why my candy tuft has a flower its just one not a group or anything. Odd)

    Bookmark   August 7, 2014 at 1:45PM
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floral_uk z.8/9 SW UK

'....and keep them in the freezer .....' Maybe you missed what RyseRyse_2004 said above. The freezer will kill some seeds if not done very carefully. (Cell membranes can rupture on defrosting). The fridge is better. But you can keep most seeds perfectly well in a cool, dry place. If you are going to sow this winter or next spring cool and dry will be all that's needed. Especially for commercial seed packets which are vacuum packed anyway and will keep for ages as long as unopened.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2014 at 7:41AM
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