Gardening Catalogs Can Inspire Us

Think about growing something new this year!

It’s January and the mail order catalogs are arriving causing us to think about a new gardening season.  They can help us with some new ideas as we begin to plan what we want to grow in our gardens this year.

Many varieties listed in the catalogs are those grown from seed like annuals, perennials and vegetables. Growing some plants from seed is the preferred way to grow. But some plants take more time to develop. Those plants are better placed in the ground as transplants or more mature plants which have been grown in a greenhouse or at a local nursery. Peppers for instance, take longer to start. It will be several weeks before they are mature enough to be transplanted into the garden. Tomatoes, also, perform better as transplants rather than seeded in the garden. If you start these plants indoors, be sure to check sowing timing on the seed package and provide adequate light and moisture to develop a sturdy plant to transfer to the garden.

There are shrubs and perennials that are available as bare root starter plants that can be shipped fairly reasonably through the mail. Deciduous flowering shrubs and trees can be purchased this way as long as you are willing to wait for them to develop. Fruiting plants purchased from mail order companies ‘bareroot’ will normally give you good results if they have been properly cared for before arriving at your home. The roots should never dry out and they should not be exposed to warm temperatures or they will begin to sprout and grow before they are planted.  This is not desirable.

Gardeners who want results sooner than later may, in general, want to consider purchasing more mature plants. If you are interested in trees and shrubs and in this group of gardeners, it would be better to go to your local garden center or nursery to check out varieties available either ‘balled and burlapped’ or in containers. In fact, one good idea is to call your nursery and ask them if they have what you are looking for. You can actually help your local plant source by asking them about some new varieties you found in the catalogs and see if they can have them for you when it is the proper time to plant.

Gardening can be rewarding in many ways especially when you are growing your own vegetables. Nothing tastes better than fresh produce. If you only have a few containers on the deck or patio, grow your own tomatoes, cucumbers, beans and some lettuce. All you need is full sun, a source of water and some time to get everything planted using one of the professional potting soils. You’ll really enjoy the experience and the flavor!

MVG – Helping Customers Grow Since 1984