Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Fall Nesting {Day 11} - Sow Seeds

Maybe you've been spending some time outdoors lately, tidying and preparing your gardens for fall and winter. Not much left to do outdoors, right?


Not only is there plenty of time to plant bulbs (which we'll talk about in a few days), now is also the time to plant some seeds for next year's garden too. A lot of flowers actually do better if you plant them in the fall; some need the period of cold to grow (like a bulb) and some end up starting weeks earlier than they would if you planted them in the spring. And since seeds are inexpensive, you can sprinkle now, worry later.

(on1stsite via flickr)

Both my sister and my parents had envious displays of Hollyhocks this past summer, and so naturally I decided that I desperately needed my own. I'm nothing if not a free thinker, right?

 (via Content in a Cottage)

Unfortunately, as hollyhock is a biennial and only produces leaves the first year, I won't have much to show next year... but it's all about patience. You know, patience? That thing I physiologically lack, but still keep trying to build? Thankfully my father also sent me home with a few first-year hollyhock plants so I might have a little bit of fabulousness spring up next year.

(via Pinterest)

Yesterday I decided to plant the seeds I had been given by my sister, with a little help in the form of my six year old son Aidan.

Planting seeds like this is really simple (especially if you have a dad who was a plant biologist and grew up on a farm. Which admittedly you might not. But I do, so never fear. I pestered him for all of us.) Imagine the flowers that drop their seeds at the end of summer or in fall... they do just that; they drop them. Easy peasy... we'll even do nature one better, just wait.

Use a garden rake to loosen the soil, clear any large obstructions and level the ground. Scatter the seeds.

Then just use your hands to cover the seeds lightly.

This is where we improve upon nature's design. Instead of just leaving them there, make your kid walk on them. Tamp the earth down to keep your little seeds from blowing away or getting whisked away in a fall rainstorm.

And then next summer, enjoy your beautiful flowers. Or in the case of hollyhocks, enjoy their leaves. Ha! Happy planting, y'all.

{Click here to see the other posts in my 31 Days of Fall Nesting series...}


  1. Does that only work with perennials? I planted some 4" tall hollyhocks the other day. Wonder what they'll do next year? I'm guessing just leaves, if I'm that lucky! I collect all my zinnia seeds at the end of the season and put them in a brown paper bag, The next spring - scatter them, and you have zinnias everywhere :)

  2. Nope, some annuals and biennials too - check out this link: http://elizabeth-loveland.suite101.com/fall-sowing-of-seeds-in-the-flower-garden-a66952

    I would THINK that the 4" tall hollyhocks were year 1 so hopefully they'll flower next year? I'm crossing my fingers for the couple of short leafy hollyhocks I got from my father this year, too.

  3. This has got me thinking. I love Spring - my favorite time of the year because of the weather and seeing flowers after a long winter.

    But you are right - I can change my concept of fall and thing of flowers!! Just this morning, I had a rose bloom from my rose bush again!! It had no roses for the past month and then all the sudden it has two buds!

  4. What a fun surprise in October -- I hope you're enjoying that rose :)

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