Hardy perennials can be sown in seed trays, especially if you have lots of seed, the seed should be covered with horticultural grit and left outside in a protected place. They often need a period of cold to germinate and seed bought during the winter can be treated in the same way. Large seeds can be sown direct into pots and I often sow direct into plugs as this saves pricking out the seedlings. Stand the seed trays or pots in water rather than using a watering can.
Sowing Hardy Annual Seeds
Hardy annuals can also be sown in the same way only just cover the seed with compost rather than grit. If you have a propagator you can sow tropical or non-hardy plants, such as caster oil plants in March but these will need to go into a unheated greenhouse or frame to harden off. A frame is ideal as you can open up during the day, close at night and use fleece if frost is a problem.
- Use clean pots
- Use fresh compost
- Don’t over water as this causes damping off
- LABEL + date, some plants such as Peonies will take at least 2 years
When you collect your seed, keep in paper bags, labelled clearly.
I keep mine in a shoe box in the fridge, they must be kept cold, so none in the greenhouse or on a window ledge!