Whether you are a beginner or veteran gardener, one of the most exciting tasks of the growing season is the yearly (or seasonal) trip to the local gardening store. If your children are old enough to help with the garden, they are old enough to accompany you to the gardening store as there is no time like the present to install a love of nature in a youngster.
For some reason, everyone loves seed packets. Young or old, busy or bored, you’ll find people at the gardening store looking at seed packets. To children especially, there always seems to be so many packets of flowers and vegetables. The pictures on the packets are always so colorful and pretty, and the vegetables look good enough for even a toddler to admire and eat.
For adults, information on the seed packet includes where and when to plant, optimal planting conditions, planting weeks, and pictures on the packet that entice a gardener to grow what appears to be the world’s biggest and most brilliant vegetables and flowers.
You’ll find farmers and dads at the big barrels of bulk seeds with a large metal scoop behind a plastic hinged lid. Kids look at the barrels as though the goodies hidden behind the plastic are candy; new gardeners look at all the barrels with puzzlement, because to them, all seeds seem to look the same.
It’s only when you look on the wall that you notice the names of all the different grass seeds because alas, there is more than one kind, and they are not all the same. Wouldn’t life be easier if there was a universally accepted grass seed and everyone’s grass was as plush and green as their neighbor’s? There are at least 10 different types of grass representing different parts of the country. The neighborhood gardening store is obviously going to sell grasses that are indigenous to their growing area.
But, there are more than a few barrels holding bulk seeds. In addition to grass, vegetables seeds are sold in bulk; carrots, turnips, clover, and other produce that can be spread in large farming areas (i.e. strawberries, blueberries, etc.) are found in those barrels. More than one homeowner has spread what he thought to be grass seeds on his newly raked and fertilized front yard only to find he has a nice crop of carrots popping up.
Looking and buying seeds at the gardening store can be fun. However, the new homeowner or weekend gardener should take the time and energy to ensure they are purchasing the right seed for their planting needs. Seeds aren’t expensive, but having to reseed an incorrectly planted lawn can be a waste of time, energy, and money.