One of my projects this year is a self seeding garden. I showed you in yesterday's post what I've done so far and I mentioned a few of my personal reasons for planting a self sowing garden but since that post I thought of a few more general ideas why someone might want to consider planting one.
1. Cost - seeds are much more inexpensive than buying full grown plants. Unique seed packets could run as much as $5 for a packet of 5 seeds but most seed packets usually cost much less. I expect to pay $2-$3 for the seed packets with about 30 or more seeds in each. You can also trade with other gardeners for seeds or use seed you may have saved from previous years. Neither of those two methods will cost you a dime, except maybe in postage. Once the garden is established the plants grow, produce seeds, deposit their seeds and begin the cycle all over again. Either collect the seeds for resowing yourself or just let them drop and grow where they fall.
2. Easy maintenance - if it seeds itself you don't have to plant it! You will still have to water it and weed it but if everything goes according to plan (not the gardener's plan, Mother Nature's) you won't need to do much in the way of planting.
3. Appearance - Some of the most gorgeous gardens that I've seen are very natural in appearance. Turning over the control of your garden to natural seed dispersal will lead to you that natural looking garden oasis. The garden may even end up housing some unique hybrid plants of over time. The first year will appear very orderly but each subsequent year the garden will morph away from order ascend into pleasing chaos.
4. The element of surprise! Seed dispersal will vary from year to year which will change the combination of blooms. A cosmos planted next to the zinnias one year might end up over next to the sweat peas the next. If a plant ends up where you don't want it just pull it like a weed (after all a weed is just a plant in the wrong spot) or transplant it, whichever method your conscious can handle.
The only disadvantage I can see is for those who prefer rigid symmetry and order imposed upon nature. If that description matches you then this garden doesn't!
Labels: garden design, garden thoughts, seeds and seed starting