Thursday, 21 July 2011

The bag lady

That’s what I am just now… are you a bag person too? Do little brown envelopes await filling with seeds collected from your garden just now? I, (and others I’m sure) would love to hear about your seed collection & storage system if you’d like to share it in a comment :-)

Perhaps you sow seeds fresh… which plants do you find the most success with?




Hands up… yes, I am a filler of little brown envelopes with seeds from my garden. Being really truthful, I also find myself quite OTT with my collecting once I start!

Oh yes… I do know I’ll not likely sow all the seeds I collect but find myself relishing what I can collect. Relishing, what my garden has given me back for free too :-)

Mm… I also know some seeds won’t be viable… but I keep them all anyway. I’d take a guess that I’m not alone there either. Mm… maybe I should look into tests for seed viability. Perhaps I should consider seed exchanges too :-D

Oops… and I am partial to buying seeds when I see an offer too… 50% off and I’m picking up seeds as maybes. Lol… I like the thrill of what I could grow. A hopeless case I am, I know… I hear you laughing… does this sound familiar to anyone?

Okay... although I do love my little brown envelopes for storing seeds I came across a blog last year on seeds being stored in spice jars by fer at my little Garden in Japan. It’s great that through comments we discover new blogs/bloggers isn’t it?

Anyway, I thought this a brilliant idea… you could see the seeds in all their different shapes, colour and types. I liked that idea a lot too. fer kept hers in a picnic style basket which you can see in her post. Do take a look :-)

Coming back to those home packed little brown envelopes of seed… you have to be careful where you store them. A dry place is essential. Keeping the sealed envelopes in a tin or plastic container is worth considering too but only if your seeds are completely dry. I wish I had.

Last winter, prolonged snow on my shed roof made its way into my shed and to the slim cardboard box my seeds were kept in. A big mistake on my part… but I liked this box, there was sentiment behind it. So… the box got soggy… and so did my envelopes. Seeds lost :-(

Coming back to the bags for collecting larger seed heads that need to dry before releasing their seeds (like alliums) what kinds do you use? I tend to use completely paper but they are not always easy to find in shops I know. Where do you find your bags?

In response to the comment in my last post: “Okay, million dollar question! Where did you get the paper bags for the seeds?” asked by fellow Scottish blogger Janet, I got mine in a small stationary/print shop in the City of Perth. Danscot is at 6-8 Kinnoull Street, Perth although they also have a larger trade unit at the North Muirton Ind Estate.

In previous years I have picked up standard brown and white paper bags at this city centre shop. However, earlier this week, I was delighted to find bags with handles which will be much easier to hang up and out of the way while the seeds dry out. Bought singly at just 10p per bag I thought it a bargain too! I was also pleased with my little brown envelopes (sold as wages envelopes) at £1.25 for 50 :-)

Now… I’m all set for a dry day or two of seed collecting… are you?


This post was written by Shirley for shirls gardenwatch

8 comments:

Lona said...

A lot of your comments sounded so like mine. LOL!I have seed heads and baggies hanging as we speak.LOL! And I know I will not use them all but give many away.I love sharing seeds. Where I slack in seed collecting is not having a filing system for them but throwing all the little envelopes into a plastic container.This makes me shake my head because I am a stickler for keeping plant records. LOL!

Janet said...

Very posh bags, Shirley but awfully nice and you can hang them up. I have the wages envelopes but all the way to Perth for bags? There must be some here. I have been known to pick up a few bags other places. I'm sure folk can work out from where and what they are normally used for..
Thanks for answering my million dollar question.

Liz said...

Hi Shirl,

I'd imagine the paper bags can be found in places like Hobbycraft, but I've never actually looked to be sure. I get the little envelopes from WHSmith, generally classed as wageenvelopes.

No seed collecting just yet, although I do plan on collecting some poppies from my parents as they've had some amazing blooms this year. Tbh they're the only seeds I plan on... Oh and some Foxglove species I'm yet to post about - blog post written and it's sat waiting for me to decide to post it!

My envelopes then go in one of those kitsch seed boxes with little sections for each month... However they're now all jumbled up and I don't plan on sorting them out! lol.

NellJean said...

What a fun post. Seeds aren't fussy about their bags. For seed heads, I buy a packet of paper lunch bags at the grocery or dollar store. For little packets of seeds, I use coin envelopes from an office supply or stationer. I saved pill bottles for bigger, bean sized seeds like castor beans.

Lisa at Greenbow said...

I have such rotten luck with seeds. It is a wonder that I collect any in our garden but collect I do. I just can't resist those little (or large) seed pods. I put them into envelopes that my cousin gave me and write the name of the seed and date. Your big bags are nice to collect the seeds. I found seeds in my ear the other day after scattering some columbine seeds. Ha..

Gardeningbren said...

Your photo deserves to be in a magazine..how beautiful.

My seeds are saved, when dried, in a suitcase..just a small one about two feet by 18 inches. I like it as it has a great British motif on the front..Big Ben and all that...a fun suitcase with old fashioned clasps. I always keep the case inside though..where it is dry. (it's not old and moldy..a new suitcase)

Great blog entry Shirl. My paper bags are not nearly as smart as yours ))).

Christina said...

I wish I was as organised, but I don't really like leaving bags on the plants in the garden and often when I go to collect the seed I find nature has done the job and the seed has already beed dispersed! As my ground is very coarse lots of seeds germinate where they will and I move them to where I want them, again not very organised. Have fun. Christina

shirl said...

Sorry I have been slow to comment here. Thanks to you all for your comments they are great and very much appreciated :-D

Lona, Janet, Liz, Nell, Lisa, Brenda and Christina – I do hope you are having the weather you need to do the garden jobs that you want to get done just now. The garden never sleeps does it? At this time of year it’s just one big party of plants… oh… that includes weeds and their seeds too! Needless to say… I don’t have bags and envelopes for them! Enjoy the rest of your week :-D