Animated Exeter’s guide to the best BBQs this summer

Lesia Sherwood Barbecue, Garden Leave a Comment

Enjoy this summer with one of the best BBQs out there. We’re going to go through all of the barbecues and the advantages and disadvantage of using gas, charcoal, and electric for your barbecue. We’ll explore the different case studies and examples where you can really make use of quality BBQ and how to get the most out of this summer and the long evenings ahead.

Would you go with a charcoal barbecue this summer?

From my perspective the only way to barbecue this summer is with charcoal. You simply don’t get the same flavour if you are not using lovely charcoal. And by the way, don’t get caught using the briquettes. They aren’t all that great the very best charcoal available with lumpwood. Lumpwood charcoal is basically high quality timber that’s been turned into charcoal and heated. Briquettes on the other hand have far more chemicals. They also need to be burning hot white so that you’ve definitely got rid of all those chemicals. It’s far safer just to use high quality lumpwood charcoal. So when you using a charcoal barbecue make sure that you’ve got plenty of kindling wood so that you can get the fire going naturally. You just simply need some paper to start the fire itself and drop the kindling on then once that’s taken hold add the lumpwood charcoal.

Charcoal Grill

Charcoal Grill

The downside to charcoal barbecues is the time it takes to get things going. From start to finish you might need to delete 2 hours to cook your food. That’s quite some time and if you have to factor that you’ve got work that day for example, then you’re going to be really be in trouble when beating really late. If you’ve got kids it’s not ideal either.

Gas barbecues a really ideal for a family without much time.

The great thing about a gas barbecues is that it is basically an extension of the home kitchen. you can cook really quickly with a gas barbecue because you just simply turning the hob on in the same way they would use your gas cooker. The biggest problem for me with a gas barbecue is the fact you don’t get that same smoky flavoured meat. That you would otherwise get from using lumpwood charcoal. For me that’s the biggest downside to a gas BBQ of course if you’ve got a family and you’re in a real rush then this is absolutely the best way to go.

Gas barbecues also come with the added benefit of not having to worry about storing too much in the way of fuel. You just keep your tank of gas underneath hidden inside the barbecue itself and you’ll know pretty much when you’re going to run low. It takes just a couple of minutes to change a gas bottle went of course a gas bottle last for a long time so there’s very little maintenance or preparation required for a gas BBQ. They also normally come with the really handy pull down hood so that you can keep away any wildlife that would otherwise be attracted by the remnants on the barbecue itself.

Gas barbecue

Gas barbecue

Is electrical great alternative for the barbecue?

Personally I’m not much of a fan of an electric barbecue because it’s basically an electric griddle. That doesn’t mean that it’s not ideal for outdoors though, if you’ve not got much in the way of time then and electric griddle is really straightforward because you simply heat it and when you finish take it indoors and wash it up. It’s almost like cooking inside but with the added benefit of being outside if it’s a really nice hot summer’s day or evening.

In conclusion to the best way to BBQ this summer.

To conclude the best way to barbecue this summer just simply go with the lumpwood charcoal BBQ. Not only is a gas BBQ more expensive, it’s also doesn’t provide you with that same smoky flavour. But with that said if you’re limited on time then gas might be better for you. Personally however, I would definitely go with a lump wood charcoal BBQ because you get all of the benefits of the real outdoor experience as well as that smoky flavour me which is unrivalled after its been cooked.

Safety and Security in the Garden

Lesia Sherwood Garden, Safety Leave a Comment

Your garden should be a place where you and your family can feel safe and secure. A little extra care and attention will help lower the risk of injury, as well as the chance of having valuable equipment and plants stolen. If you want to enjoy your garden in peace, here’s how!

General safety

Always protect your hands with good gardening gloves. Leave rakes propped up with the prongs facing a wall. When using a ladder, secure its base against a board and tie the top to your support if possible.

Always dispose of garden chemicals safely. Don’t just tip them down the drain – you may get it back as drinking water!

Tip: Working in the garden always involves a risk of tetanus infection. Make sure your innoculations are up to date.

Power tools

Electricity in the garden can be lethal. Always connect any mains-powered equipment via a Residual Current Device (RCD) to disconnect the power in the event of a short. Safety switches on power tools are there for a purpose – don’t try to overcome them. Disconnect your power tools before touching their blades. Always rest when you’re tired when using power tools.

Safety for children

Don’t leave tools lying around where they can cause injury. Store garden chemicals out of reach of small hands. Do not decant into soft drinks bottles!

Pools and young children do not mix – small children can drown in just a few inches of water. Make sure you have an adequate fence around any water feature if you have small children.

Thank you image by website: swns.com

Educate children not to eat anything unless you say it is safe. Even if you remove the poisonous plants from your garden, there could still be others around, so education is the best policy. Laburnum seeds are a particular risk – some children mistake them for peas and just one or two can be fatal.
Don’t let pets use the garden as a toilet – parasitic toxocara worms can blind children years later.

Secure your boundaries

High rear fences or dense thorny hedges provide a good barrier to thieves. Make sure your gates and fences are not easy to climb. Adding a strip of flimsy trellis on top is a good deterrent.

Front boundaries should be low so that thieves cannot conceal themselves. One of the best deterrents is a gravel path or driveway that is very noisy when walked over.

Secure your contents

Good lighting, activated by a passive infra-red device (PIR) that detects movement or body heat, is almost as good as a guard dog!
Sheds are vulnerable to theft. Install good quality locks – the ones that come with the shed are rarely robust enough. Reinforce your shed with a steel plate inside the door, bolted through with coach bolts. Reinforce the door jamb if necessary.

Leave ladders chained to a fixture so they cannot be used by thieves. Valuable garden plants, statues and garden furniture should be marked with your house number and postcode and secured in place with sturdy chains cemented into the ground.

Vulnerable plants can be anchored into the ground using plant anchors or long wire hooks. Bury chicken wire a few inches deep around the plant to prevent them from being dug out.

Tip: Check your home insurance cover for garden contents and up your cover if necessary.

Caring For Your Hedge

Lesia Sherwood Care Advice, Garden, Safety Leave a Comment

Hedges provide a wonderful living screen that gives you privacy and protects your boundaries. They also make a green backdrop for the rest of the garden. But hedges must be maintained or they can become an eyesore.

Trimming

Formal hedges – i.e. rectangular shapes – should be pruned twice a year using shears or a hedge cutter. It is useful to stretch a line between stakes to mark the cutting line, trimming just above the previous cut.

Established informal hedges usually need only one annual cut and are better trimmed with secateurs – particularly if they have large leaves.

Hedge trimmer

Hedge trimmer

Timing

The best time to trim varies.  If your hedge has flowers, cut immediately after flowering or you will miss the display – this particularly applies to escallonia. Beach, yew, holly and most other hedges should be pruned between early and late summer.

Newly planted hedges should have one third of their growth removed in the second year. This encourages dense, bushy growth.

Shape

Trim to create a ‘batter’ – so that the hedge is slightly wider at the base, or at least has a rounded top. This gradual tapering keeps the bottom fully clothed with leaves and avoids the risk of snow and wind damage.

When your hedge has reached the desired height, trim off 150mm (6in) to allow further dense growth up to the final hedge line.

Tip: Use a sheet underneath the hedge when trimming for easy removal of the clippings.

Feeding and watering

Feed hedges once a year: a light dressing of about a handful of fertiliser per metre or yard length is adequate. Regular pruning reduces the root spread as the plant balances growth above and below the ground, so it is important to keep the root area well supplied with nutrients.

  • Add an annual mulch of organic matter to keep the root area moist and prevent weeds. Spread under, but not touching, the stems.
  • Watering should only be necessary in times of extreme drought.
  • Pests are not normally a problem on hedges but if they do attack forcibly wash the pests off with a hosepipe.

Rejuvenating

Some old, overgrown hedges can be rejuvenated by cutting them back severely – this works well on beech, hornbeam, hawthorn, box, holly and privet hedges, but not on conifers, except yew. Cut one side hard back in January/February before growth normally begins. Cut to about 15mm (6in) from the main stem. Feed and mulch as above. If this side grows well the following year, repeat the procedure on the other side. If not, wait until growth is active on the cut side.

With other multi-stemmed hedges you can remove some of the old wood each year to encourage new vigorous growth – but never more than one third of the plant. For conifers, rejuvenation is restricted to pulling branches across any gaps and tying in place.

For other garden upkeep projects, see Controlling Weeds

Controlling Weeds

Lesia Sherwood Care Advice, Garden Leave a Comment

Weeds are one of the major problems faced by gardeners. If not controlled properly, newly planted areas can soon become a morass of green weeds which can seriously weaken new plants or reduce your crop of vegetables. Weed seeds in the soil can remain viable for many years and some need literally only a flash of daylight to start them growing. So how should you control weeds?

Tip: Annual weeds multiply quickly – they germinate, set many seeds and die within a year. Perennial weeds cause problems in different ways – their roots are long lived so can be difficult to control. Find out the type of weeds you’re dealing with before tackling them. For problems with pests, see Pest Control.

Step 1: Weed prevention

Bare soil always invites weeds, so use ground cover plants, available for most garden situations or mulch the ground. A mulch, a few inches thick, of composted bark, cocoa shells or your own composted leaves, is one of the best methods of controlling weeds. Any weeds growing in the mulch are easily removed from the loose material. Don’t use garden compost as a mulch as it may contain large numbers of seeds.

Many other materials can also be used to cover the soil surface and to prevent weed germination. Organic gardeners have been known to recommend soaked newspapers, though these look better when covered with a thin layer of soil or chippings!

You can also obtain weed-suppressing sheeting. The types that let water through are best and can be very effective if you are planting a new shrub border. These look best covered with a mulch of natural material.

Step 2: Weed removal

When weeding by hand, make sure you don’t just pull the tops off the weeds – you need to remove as much root as you can, after loosening the soil with your trowel. Do this regularly and remove weed seedlings that you can easily identify, leaving others till their true nature becomes apparent. You will then build up your knowledge as well as leaving seedlings of your own plants which you can retain to increase your stock.

Using a hoe can be very effective if you are working between widely spaced plants. The correct technique is to keep the hoe blade sharp and move it parallel to and just underneath the soil surface to chop off weeds at the roots. This will only work with annual weeds; perennials still need digging out. Once you start, keep hoeing regularly to decrease the weed seed population in the soil.

Many weed killers have been used widely in the past but have eventually been withdrawn due to the damage they cause to health and the environment. The safer types are those that become inactive on contact with the soil. Contact herbicides kill only the plant material they are sprayed on – these will kill annual weeds but the roots of perennials will not be touched.

Systemic herbicides spread to the whole plant if applied properly and are useful for dealing with problem perennial weeds. Take care not to get any weed killer on your prize plants or they will be killed too. Alternatively, try a touch weed killer. These are useful for weeds in lawns.

Tip: Whichever methods you use it is essential to remove weeds as soon as possible before further seed can be set.

Pest Control

Lesia Sherwood Care Advice, Garden Leave a Comment

Controlling pests used to be a matter of which chemical to spray or dust over your plants – but in many cases these chemicals have now been withdrawn from sale. Gardeners today must find pest control methods that don’t cause damage to people or the environment. Here are some popular and useful methods to try.

Insects and other pests evolved along with plants and will always be present. The sensible gardener accepts that low levels of pest attack are inevitable. The time to take action is when intensive attacks cause real damage, and as soon as any pests are seen. Prevention is better than cure.

Good growing conditions

Strong plants are better able to resist attacks from pests and also diseases. So keep plants weed-free and well-spaced to ensure they have adequate access to light and nutrients in the soil. See Controlling Weeds for more tips on battling weeds.

Good drainage is essential for healthy growth. It’s best to correct problems before any new planting. Avoid over-applying fertilisers – this causes weak, sappy growth that is attractive to pests. Start right by rotating vegetable crops and selecting plants more resistant to pests and diseases.

Use nature!

The biggest enemies of pests are other insects and animals that eat them! So encourage birds, beetles, frogs and toads into your garden to keep down pest numbers. See Wildlife Gardening for more tips on encouraging wildlife into your garden.

If you grow nectar-bearing plants they will attract insects such as hoverflies and ladybirds that help control aphids. Avoid planting large numbers of the same plant together, especially vegetables, as this helps pests spread.

Mechanical controls

Always examine new plants carefully – they can bring new pests into your garden.
Examine your garden regularly to reveal pest attacks that can be halted before they become a major problem. Spotting and squashing aphid attacks on new growth can prevent massive numbers of greenfly in future. The same applies to moth and butterfly eggs which soon develop into caterpillars. If numbers are too high for this approach, try washing off pests with jets of water.

Use mechanical barriers and traps – such as codling moth phenemone traps on apples. Fleece will stop almost all flying insect pests taking hold. Slug traps will help control one of the worst plant pests.

Chemical controls

Using chemicals to control pests should always be a last resort and then should only be used infrequently, never used widespread over your garden. Think twice before using chemicals on crops that will eventually be eaten. Never use old chemicals – they will have been withdrawn from sale for good reasons!

Wildlife Gardening

Lesia Sherwood Garden, Wildlife Leave a Comment

Gardens have become increasingly important habitats for many wildlife species in Britain as intensive farming has resulted in less wild flowers and plants. If you would like to encourage wildlife into your garden, here’s how to make a mini wildlife reserve.

Food

  • By adding native wild flowers separately, or in a meadow, to your garden, you will provide wildlife with food supplies. Here are some ideas:
  • Add teasel and thistles – birds will feed on their seeds.
  • Native trees such as sorbus and elder will provide berries.
  • Flowers such as foxgloves and lavender provide nectar to attract bees.
  • Include grass species such as oats and barley to provide seeds for sparrows and continue to feed birds through the winter.
  • Plants with ‘flat’ flowers, such as sedums or limnanthes douglasii (also known as ‘poached eggs’), attract hoverflies and lacewings.
  • Leave some apples on the ground in the autumn – butterflies enjoy feasting on them.

Shelter and breeding places

Try to provide a range of habitats for different wildlife types. Here are some ideas:

  • Rotting logs will encourage beetles, which feed on slugs.
  • Leave piles of leaves to provide shelter for hedgehogs.
  • Grow ivy up tree trunks – its flowers provide food for many insects and shelter for over-wintering butterflies.
  • Don’t trim herbaceous plants in the autumn – they provide places for insects during the winter.
  • Ladybirds will nest in bundles of sticks tied together.
  • Fit bird boxes for different birds with different sized holes ranging from 25-32mm in diameter (1-1.25in).
  • Use hedges for boundaries instead of fences, and trim before March or after August to avoid nesting birds. Include holly and hawthorn to provide berries.
  • Ground beetles and centipedes can be encouraged by leaving some areas untidy to provide hiding places.
  • Earthworms will increase when you regularly mulch bare soil.
  • Allow nettles and weeds to develop in a restricted area, plant ground cover widely and cover vertical surfaces with climbers to add lots of food and habitats for beneficial insects.

Water

Adding a wildlife pond will attract many birds and insects by providing food. Be sure the pond has gently sloping sides to allow wildlife to get in and out easily. Add a bucket of mud from an existing pond to introduce pond creatures – many more will follow naturally.

Safety

Avoid using chemical herbicides, fungicides, pesticides or creosote in your garden. See Organic GardeningControlling Weeds and Pest Control for more tips on how to garden without them.

Whether you live in the city or the country, you can make your garden a popular place for insects, birds and animals to hang out. Keep a diary handy to make a note of who visits your garden and when. You can take photos of the animals that visit, or even draw pictures of them. You’ll be surprised at how many visitors you get!

Make a ladybird hotel

Ladybirds hibernate in winter, so why not make them somewhere cosy to stay? Ask Mum or Dad to help you carefully remove the lid of an old paint or food tin (a large baked bean or tomato soup one is ideal) and pack it with straws that have been cut to the length of the tin. Then hang it outside in a sunny place, at least a metre from the ground. Be sure not to disturb the tin, and look out for the ladybirds when they emerge in April. Or Mum and Dad might prefer to buy a Ladybird Hotel.

Go batty

Bats are nocturnal which means they come out at night and need somewhere safe to roost in daytime. They’re getting rarer because their natural habitats, such as old trees and caves, are disappearing. You can help by putting up a bat box. They look like a bird box, but with a slit underneath instead of a hole at the front. The box needs to be positioned at about 5m high, so you’ll need to send Mum or Dad up a ladder! Look out for signs of activity including bats leaving the box at dusk, the sounds of ‘chattering’ or small droppings below. Be patient though, as bats may take a while to find the box.

Organic Gardening

Lesia Sherwood Garden, Organic Leave a Comment

If you’re concerned about the environmental damage caused by overuse of pesticides and herbicides, and worried about chemical residues in food, then it’s time to think about organic gardening. Here are some good tips on how to garden with nature, not against it.

Healthy Soil

Organic gardening focuses on healthy soil. Adding organic matter improves soil structure, aids drainage, introduces air spaces that enable plant roots to penetrate and encourages beneficial soil wildlife (such as earthworms) to thrive.

Organic gardeners – like nature – aim to feed the soil rather than the plant. Adding bulky organic matter builds a highly friable, water-retentive and fertile soil. The result is strong and healthy ornamental plants and vegetables that grow and crop well and are naturally resistant to pests and diseases.

Sources of organic matter

The best source of organic matter is home-made garden compost. Well-composted fallen leaves are also excellent as a mulch. Spent mushroom compost and seaweed can be used though they should be composted first. Animal manures are less popular now, following BSE.

Pests

Organic gardeners avoid chemical fertilisers as they can cause pollution problems as well as allowing plants to grow ‘soft’. Soft plants are more prone to attacks by pests and diseases after being force-fed.

Avoiding pesticides enables natural predators to thrive and hold garden pests in check. The less you spray, the less you will need to spray. You can also control pests by including barriers and traps, and encouraging natural predators by growing plants that attract them into your garden. See Wildlife Gardening and Pest Control for more tips.

Weeds

Prevent weeds by covering the soil surface with ground cover plants or a thick mulch.

When clearing new areas, cover the ground to exclude light then dig out any remaining persistent weeds. Use old carpets or black polythene, anchored down with bricks, for about six months before planting.

See Controlling Weeds for more tips.

Crop rotation

This is essential in the vegetable garden and helps prevent soil diseases and pests building up.

Companion plants

By planting companion plants you can disguise the smell of other plants, and so confuse pests that locate plants by smell. Grow garlic, for example, between rows of carrots or among roses.

Or planting marigolds close to tomatoes and cabbages discourages attacks by cabbage white butterflies and whiteflies. These plants also attract hover flies that, in turn, consume aphids.

Organic Gardening Dos & Don’ts

If you’re committed to a natural, healthy approach to gardening, but don’t quite know where to start, you’re in the right place. Here we take a look at the top dos and don’ts for going organic in your garden.

Do

  • Manage the whole garden organically – not just the fruit and vegetables
  • Make the garden ‘wildlife friendly’, encouraging natural creatures to control pests
  • Learn to distinguish pests from predators
  • Play to your garden’s strengths, capitalising on its particular characteristics
  • Make soil care a priority
  • Make compost and leaf mould to feed the soil
  • Reuse and recycle, to cut down the use of finite resources and reduce disposal problems
  • Use organically grown seeds as far as possible
  • Consider the environmental implications when choosing materials for hard landscaping, fencing, soil improvement and so forth
  • Collect rain water and reduce the need for watering by improving the soil and growing appropriate plants
  • Make local sources your first choice

Don’t

  • Use slug pellets
  • Use herbicides
  • Use preservative-treated wood
  • Use genetically modified varieties

The Best Organic Weedkiller

Lesia Sherwood Care Advice, Garden, Organic, Wildlife Leave a Comment

Weeds are a real pest for gardeners and when it comes to tackling them organically there is a few viable options, by the end of this guide you should be able to decide which is the best organic weedkiller for you and how to make sure those pesky weeds don’t return in the future.

Avoiding the use of the harshest chemical herbicides will increase your safety whilst both gardening and eating your home grown produce, it also makes it much safer for the children and pets to enjoy your garden without the worry of excluding them from certain areas, and there is nothing more enjoyable than sharing your garden with your loved ones.

We also make it easy for you to find the products you need by offering some handy links to items we think will help in your garden;

The Best Organic Weedkiller

We think the best method for removing weeds is Neudorff’s Organic Fast Acting Weedkiller, it makes use of a naturally occurring weedkiller called perlagonic acid, it naturally exists in geranium leaves and is very effective at killing the weeds in your garden. This fast acting organic weedkiller can be used against both perennial and annual weeds and weed grasses and works by breaking down the cell walls causing the problem plant to dry out.

This organic weedkiller is 100% biodegradable, which means it breaks down quickly in soil, this prevents any build-up in your soil and it will cause no problems at all for your children or pets, once the area is dry you can use the area as normal straight away. The product is applied using a trigger spray gun which provides accurate and effective application with every use.

The only downside to this weedkiller is that fact that it has no prolonged effect on the weeds and therefore will need re-applying every two to four weeks. We found it most effective in smaller fruit and vegetable plots, it’s spray action is both easy to use and very useful and the effect on the weeds is noticeable within a day. However if you take some preventive action around vegetables you can avoid weeds without the need for even organically sourced products:

The best weed control without chemicals

One of the best ways of doing this is to cultivate the soil, you can do this using a garden hoe, it is easier than hand picking weeds because it exposes and damages the root system, without this the weed will die. If you do this regularly the soil will remain loose between treatments therefore making it more difficult for new weeds to establish and even easier to remove them. Creating a regular watering and maintenance schedule is the best way to avoid problems cause by troublesome plants.

Using mulch for weed control

Another good method of weed protection without chemicals comes in the form of mulch, applying a 5cm thick layer of organic mulch such as straw, grass trimmings or bark chippings will help block the sun, preventing photosynthesis and therefore preventing weeds from establishing. It is very important that you remove all the weeds that are already established before applying the mulch and the best way to do this is a combination of hand weeding and cultivating. You should be careful to suffocating young fruit plants by leaving a gap of around 3cm around the base of each stem. This allows air to each the plant and is required for healthy growth.

Alternatives to mulching

As a possible alternative to mulch you could use weed control fabric, the sheets of fabric create a barrier against weeds which are developing within the soil. The fabric is easy to lay and using a garden knife you can cut into easily in order to equally space your fruit or vegetables. However in our experience we have found this method to be quite expensive and difficult to re-use, plus natural organic mulch rots into the soil providing a natural source of soil replenishment and reduces the need to fertilise.

You could look into reducing the spacing between fruit and vegetable plants which will create a natural reduction in the amount of light passing through the plants canopy, however we find that this can lead to problems due to a lack of space, a lack water availability and a shortage of nutrients within the soil. Ideally you should take action to prevent weeds without jeopardising your crops quality or likelihood of success.

Each method has it’s own advantages and if you are short on time we would suggest Neudorff’s Organic Fast Acting Weedkiller to spot kill weeds which can then be removed more easily after a couple of days. Combine this with a weekly cultivation, taking care around growing plants to avoid root damage, and you will find you weed problem to be a thing of the past. With the weeds gone your vegetable plants can enjoy more of everything they need to grow successfully and you should see crop yields improving and the quality of produce too.

How to Get Cheap or Free Seeds for Your Garden

Lesia Sherwood Garden, Seeds Leave a Comment

How to Get Cheap or Free Seeds for Your Garden: Grow Your Own Flowers and Vegetables and Save Money

The most common way of getting seeds is to buy them. Millions of packets of seeds are purchased in the U.S. alone every year. Scores of seed companies, from tiny one man operations to huge corporate conglomerates, spend millions of dollars each year developing new varieties for our gardening pleasure. With the advent of internet marketing, you can literally order seeds from all over the world.

Some of the cheaper sources of seeds are dollar and discount stores, which carry many common flower and vegetable seeds at very low prices, usually several packages for £1.

Auction sites are the best place to buy cheap specialty seeds. The price depends on the rarity of the seed, but offers a huge savings over buying the plants. For instance, if you pay £6 for 5 seeds of a plant that costs £20, you have saved £94.
Even if you pay retail price for seeds, it’s much cheaper than buying the plants or the vegetables. A package of vegetable seeds for £1.99 will pay for itself many times over.

Exchange Seeds With Other Gardeners

Gardeners have been trading seeds with each other for hundreds of years. There are many seed exchanges online, easily found just by searching. If you can arrange a swap, for the cost of postage you can get any kind of seed you want, from African violets to orchids. To make the deal even sweeter, some people with extras will offer up seeds for a Stamped Self Addressed Envelope (SASE) with no trade required.

Get Free Seeds from Other Gardeners

Gardeners love to share seeds with each other. Don’t be afraid to knock on doors and ask for the seeds from a plant. You may make some lovely gardening friends this way.

Utilise local sites like Craigslist or Free cycle to ask for seeds. Many people have seeds, and would never think of giving them away unless someone asks.

Scavenge Free Seeds

Wildflowers are easy to grow, need little fertiliser or water, and you can gather wildflower seeds right off the side of the roadways in undeveloped areas or from fields.

Don’t forget old homesteads or houses that are being torn down, either. Those yards can be a bounty of beautiful flower seeds for free. Of course, get permission anytime you are entering private property.

Free Seeds from Store Bought Fruits and Vegetables

Many a wonderful crop of vegetables has been grown from free seeds saved from grocery bought produce. You can justify the cost of some exotic foods by growing the seeds and not ever having to pay for them again. If you live in a climate where tropicals such as mango and avocado will not bear, keep in mind that they make lovely houseplants…for free!

Attend a “Seedy Saturday” Event

Seedy Saturdays and Seedy Sundays are events where gardeners swap heirloom seeds, or seeds for plant varieties that have been grown by their families for generations. The idea is to preserve these “pass down” varieties for generations to come by multiplying the number of grower/savers exponentially.

If you would like to organise a Seedy Saturday or Sunday event, Seedy Organiser is a mailing list to provide resources and support for seed swap organisers all over the world.

You can see that there is a plethora of sources for cheap or free seeds. For mere pennies on the dollar, you can grow a wonderful vegetable or flower garden of your own. Don’t forget to save your seeds to share with others.