February 22nd, 2002
With Compliments of the RHS

As a Christmas present my English father-in-law gave me a membership to the Royal Horticultural Society. Last December I received notice of a surprise benefit. I could choose 30 packets of seeds from the RHS gardens at Wisley. These are excess seeds that the RHS shares with its members. I quickly filled out my first choices and alternates, looking up many Latin names (the RHS always refers to plants by their Latin names), trying to stick with plants that were easy to grow from seed and that had a chance of surviving the shock of moving to Texas.

The seeds arrived today! Now to research how to grow them.

  • Agastache foeniculm. Anise hyssop. Barely cover seeds. (Sprouted easily.)
  • Agastache mexicana. Mexican giant hyssop. Barely cover seeds. (Sprouted easily.)
  • Althaea officinalis. marsh mallow. Perennial herb. Leave seeds uncovered. Requires light to germinate.
  • Amaranthus caudatus. Love-lies-bleeding. Barely cover seeds. Prefers partial shade. Poor soil. (Small red seeds. Sprouted easily. However, many damped off. Began watering with chamomile tea, which saved half a dozen of them.)
  • Angelica archangelica. angelica. Sow outside where they are to flower.
  • Antirhinum majus. snapdragon.
  • Aquilegia (mixed). columbine.
  • Asclepias curassavica. scarlet milkweed.
  • Calendula officinalis. pot marigold. Sow outside. Keep moist and dark. (Sprouted easily. But it is a cool-weather plant in the South.)
  • Canna (mixed). (The five seeds are quite hard and I soak them. One’s skin seems to break and I plant it and it sprouts. No luck on the others.)
  • Cardiocrinum giganteum. giant lily. (Difficult to germinate. Three years before they will flower.)
  • Cleome hassleriana.
  • Commelina diathifolia. dayflower.
  • Coreopsis tinctoria. (Sowed outside in the meadow.)
  • Coriandrum sativum. Cilantro. Keep moist and dark. (2002-04-09. Sprouted easily and grew quickly. Planted in vegetable garden.)
  • Crocosmia (mixed).
  • Crocus cartwrightianus. 2004-11-10. Planted near Tulipa clusiana.
  • Crocus goulimyi.
  • Crocus tommasinianus.
  • Digitalis purpurea.
  • Hemerocallis (mixed). Daylily.
  • Lilium henryi.
  • Lunaria annua. Honesty. Annual. Barely cover seeds. (Soaked and the planted outside.)
  • Mirabilis jalapa. four-o’clock. self-seeds. Can stand dust and fumes. Good roadside plant. Leave seeds uncovered. Requires light to germinate.
  • Nicotiana knightiana. Annual, to five feet.
  • Papaver rhoeas.
  • Saponaria officianalis. Soapwort. Bouncing Bet. perennial.
  • Tanacetum parthenium ‘Aureum’. Feverfew. Sow where to flower. (Sowed outside in the rose bed.)
  • Thalictrum flavum subsp. glaucum. rue.
  • Tulipa (species).

by M Sinclair Stevens

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