If you’re a keen gardener and have well-meaning friends and family you’ll have no doubt received one of the shabby chic seed tins as a gift. If you haven’t you will probably own a Tupperware box, a box that used to
contain plant food or an old seed tray that keeps your packets of seeds all in one place.
Some seeds will stay there unopened for years as they are either packets we’ve bought on the spare of the moment or freebies we’ve gained from our gardening magazines and never got round to trying. Some will be rolled
at the top as only some seeds will have been used before we’ve decided that the yield wasn’t really worth the effort of propagation. Then you may have your own seeds that you collected in the autumn, some will have been frozen over the winter while others will have dried out. There are now nifty little brown envelopes you can buy that allow you to keep these organised and safe instead of using sandwich bags or old envelopes, or even a folded piece of A4!
Seeds do go out of date, personally I’ve bagged many bargains from garden centres buying the out of date seeds and have noticed no difference, yet if you want to be able to guarantee the quality, you may find you need to throw these away or scatter them fast!
What Should you Have in Your Seed Tin?
This will not only ensure you get a good variety throughout the year, it will also be a good guide for those who buy you the new generation seed tins, as they can now fill them with essential packs.
Every gardener exudes patience however there are sometimes, especially in the summer when we’d like to see rewards quickly. This is also true if we are trying to encourage children into the garden as they do expect instant gratification. Therefor your tin should have seeds such as:
And any others that can be sown throughout the season giving a good crop just four weeks later.
We always cope quite well when the weather stops us from gardening, however we do like to make the most of every weather. Early Firsts are essential as they let us know spring isn’t far away and allow us to start the gardening season early.
These could be
Read the back of the packets as many vegetable can be sown from Jan – March for early crops, or April-June for a later harvest.
Then we have our staple seeds which of course depend on your family’s taste. For example we would never be without sweet corn, broad beans, celeriac, onions, garlic and leeks.
Don’t forget seeds for the greenhouse such as
Even if you have an allotment devoted entirely to vegetables you can still benefit from flowers. Herbs will also add contrast along with good flavour.
There are some I haven’t mentioned as these are perennials, however many can also be grown from seed. These include:
What’s in your seed tin this year?