Who is buying seeds early...like me!

Branching Out

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I've looked over the 2023 Baker Creek offerings, and there really isn't much of anything I can make use of. I MIGHT get a packet of the Devil Black Pansies when I get my watermelon seeds, but even that is iffy (I don't have great luck with growing pansies from seed unless I toss a LOT of seed into the pot, and even then I just get a crowded mess that never really comes into its own). Plus, I tend to do better with smaller violas as opposed to true full sized pansies (they have seed for Bowles Black, but I have done that one, and it didn't like it here).
I struggle with pansies as well, and have decided to not buy anymore seed unless it is available in large quantities for a fairly low price. No more paying $4 for 10 seeds, because they tend not to germinate for me. I started several kinds in milk jugs on the north side of the house in mid-August, with a black cloth over top of the milk jug for darkness; they did great, and much better than the ones I started in flats and doted on. My transplant game needs to come up a notch though. They looked so crowded that I dreaded transplanting them, and was very late in getting them in the ground; will aim for mid-October next year.
 

Pulsegleaner

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The real problem is that, at the time when it would make SENSE to try and transplant them (when they were seedlings, and you could spread them out a little more). They're too TINY to even safely TOUCH without crushing them, let alone move. And by the time they are big enough to have something to safely get your fingers around, the roots have all intertwined so much trying to separate them usually results in killing them. So you're left with simply killing all seedlings except one in each little cell, and that means you need a LOT of seed to start with.

Once in a wild, a seed that dropped from a plant from previous years manages to become a functional plant itself, but not often enough to count on simply letting the seeds fall where they may and trusting. Besides, if you are trying to select for certain flowers, letting random plants show up wherever is usually not a good idea.
 

Pulsegleaner

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I struggle with pansies as well, and have decided to not buy anymore seed unless it is available in large quantities for a fairly low price. No more paying $4 for 10 seeds, because they tend not to germinate for me. I started several kinds in milk jugs on the north side of the house in mid-August, with a black cloth over top of the milk jug for darkness; they did great, and much better than the ones I started in flats and doted on. My transplant game needs to come up a notch though. They looked so crowded that I dreaded transplanting them, and was very late in getting them in the ground; will aim for mid-October next year.
Oh, and maybe a packet of Phil's Two tomato, if I feel like trying it again.

Wonder how long it will be until Phil's One reaches our markets (yes, there is such a thing, I saw it in the French tomato shop I bought my original Phil's Two seed from about three years ago. I think it was red.)
 

heirloomgal

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@Pulsegleaner I see in the new Baker Creek catalogue that there is a version of the Kiwano fruit that isn't described as being banana-lime flavored 🤢, but rather as sweet and delicious. Mind you, they use the phrase lemon-banana later in the blurb so how sweet can that be? Anyway, it's called Kiwano Rund, have you grown this one? Yellow on the outside with green seedy flesh inside? I love the BC catalogue but don't really trust the relentlessly glowing descriptions.
 

Pulsegleaner

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@Pulsegleaner I see in the new Baker Creek catalogue that there is a version of the Kiwano fruit that isn't described as being banana-lime flavored 🤢, but rather as sweet and delicious. Mind you, they use the phrase lemon-banana later in the blurb so how sweet can that be? Anyway, it's called Kiwano Rund, have you grown this one? Yellow on the outside with green seedy flesh inside? I love the BC catalogue but don't really trust the relentlessly glowing descriptions.
Actually, I DID plant that this previous summer. But it didn't make any flowers or fruit.
As for the taste, Weird Explorer (who does exotic fruit reviews on YouTube) ate it, and says it tastes just like a regular kiwano, more or less.

Note that there may be a SECOND round Kiwano variety out there. That Etsy seller in Canada who has the Giant Lime seeds also at one point had a round kiwano called Ricardio listed. Whether this is another name for the Rund, or a distinct variety, I don't know.
 

heirloomgal

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It never ceases to amaze me the fibbing that goes on in seedland. I mean, if people grow it, then eat it, they'll know you're fibbing. Dodgy though ubiquitous.
 

Pulsegleaner

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It never ceases to amaze me the fibbing that goes on in seedland. I mean, if people grow it, then eat it, they'll know you're fibbing. Dodgy though ubiquitous.
Some will even try and flip the blame on you. I once bought some Bambino eggplant seeds from someone on eBay. When the only plant to make it finally gave fruit, it was white instead of purple, and a bit too big (I think it was a Thai eggplant). When I contacted the seller, rather than admit they sent me the wrong thing (or that an errant seed had gotten in) they said it was my fault for not growing the eggplants in full sun (if there was enough sun for them to fruit, there was enough for the fruit to turn the right color. It's not like it was in perpetual shade.)

The hard part is telling deliberate malfeasance from simple ignorance. I've gotten wing bean seeds marked as being Macropitilium purpureum seeds (a kind of purple black flowered fodder legume of the Southwest and Mexico) and seen soybean being passed off as Bambara Groundnuts, but can't tell if this is deception on purpose or they really don't know. PLENTY of auctions have the wrong species pictured. many have the wrong species written. And, of course, there are all the (usually Chinese) listings for plants with Photoshopped pictures that do not, and can not exist (Blue strawberries, bright blue tomatoes etc.) or no one in their right mind would try to grow the way they were listed (like the ones for packets of orchid seed, which no one could grow without the proper fungal inoculant, which isn't commercially available for most of the species they are offering).

I'm also REALLY suspicious of ANYONE offering seeds of Jade Vine (Strongolydon macrabotrys) on the grounds that that plant almost NEVER makes seeds (it's usually propagated vegetatively) ; certainly not on a scale where one could sell packets full for $10 or so and have dozens of them available.

It reminds me of the problem I have ordering my fancy tea. Every tea, of course has a detailed description of the flavor. But since they are never going to say "This tea really doesn't taste very good", or even "This is nothing special" EVERY ONE has these complex overly complex tasting notes that usually bear NO relationship to what the stuff actually tastes like. So every time I try a new tea, or even the same tea from a different season's harvest, I'm going in totally blind (and when your buying stuff that is often $75-80 an ounce, going in blind can get really expensive, really quickly. God help me if I ever get curious about the $120 an ounce ones!) It's particularly bad with the black ones, where the "fruitiness" I am searching for seems to flicker on and off from season to season, so buying is almost Russian Roulette.
 

digitS'

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I want to be successful as a gardener. "Recalcitrant." @Pulsegleaner used that word and I was comfortable up until that point in time with knowing the definition but I had never thought of it in the relationship of seed that was probably very much out of its environment and, even, failing to germinate.

The seeds that I plant are not being allowed to express a preference regarding their location in the World. It is my responsibility to provide them with the best circumstances for growth as I can because, we are in a partnership with our food.

Many gardeners are trying to bring about a locally adapted variety. Annual plants, one generation each year, sure. I may have really missed the boat on that - in my decades long gardening experience. Instant gratification. I want success in this 12 month frame. And one thing that I know, even having confined myself to gardening in an environment within a circle of not more than 30-40 miles diameter, I cannot control the weather.

I'm not trained in horticulture. But, I am a believer in the science. Hybrids? Sure, I've seen mules :). Simpler hybrids - that American Shorthair cross with the Persian :D, those cats are so cute! Gardens ... I have had obvious crosses in my gardens. Healthy? Productive? Sure. Some have been stabilized by others. Gary O Sena is just about the nicest tomato in the patch for me.

Some are F1's and I can't hardly ask for better performance. Back to that Lemon Boy. Developed by PetoSeed, 1984. The problem in 2021 and a few times prior was obviously disease. What disease, I can't say. If it was alternaria, which often shows up in the patch, it was confining itself to the fruit and not stems 🤷‍♂️. Well, whatever is the problem, if there is a more resistant variety - I'm interested.

Somewhere on TEG, I was talking about another problem this year in the tomato patch. The Yellow Jellybeans were crowding out Their Neighbors! Baskets full of those tasty fruits but if we have another hot, dry Summer, I'd sure better provide some more room around those Jellybeans for the sake of everything else! Those are the problems I am okay with having.

;) digitS' :D
 

flowerbug

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Some are F1's and I can't hardly ask for better performance. Back to that Lemon Boy. Developed by PetoSeed, 1984. The problem in 2021 and a few times prior was obviously disease. What disease, I can't say. If it was alternaria, which often shows up in the patch, it was confining itself to the fruit and not stems 🤷‍♂️. Well, whatever is the problem, if there is a more resistant variety - I'm interested.

perhaps Buckeye? we experienced that once and it came in with the plants themselves in the potting soil/starting soil that was used to get the seedlings going. threw a lot of tomatoes away that season (still had a decent harvest overall).
 

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