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Buying seeds and plants through mail order catalogues

Gorgeous Snow-in-summer spilling over a rock garden.
Gorgeous Snow-in-summer spilling over a rock garden.
photo courtesy of Kata Szikora - sxc/littlekata

It’s exciting to receive mail, with the possible exception of bills and “special offers.” But the mail order gardening catalogues that are finding their way into mailboxes are brightening some people’s day.

Popular in Canada and founded in PEI over 70 years ago, Veseys Seeds catalogues are highly anticipated. The colourful pages light up a late winter day and leave the gardener planning and dreaming for hours.

An obvious benefit of the mail order gardening business is the vast selection of plants and seeds available. As large as the local garden centre is, they likely won’t have that exotic you’re looking for or will quickly sell out of the trendy flowers early in the season. Ordering as soon as possible from mail order nurseries opens the door to many more plant and flower possibilities.

Veseys carries a selection of seeds dubbed as “New for 2010,” including sprouts like Mung Bean organic sprouts and flower seeds like Mr. Majestic Double Marigolds. Browse the catalogue or order online and keep your garden fresh this year.

Another favourite for bulbs, bare root perennials and roses is Spring This amazing selection of tried and true plants, trees and shrubs is backed by Brecks Ltd. and puts out catalogues a few times a year. Their website is easy to navigate with plenty of bright photos, care advice and even plant combination ideas to create the perfect garden.

Ever dreamed of palm trees in the winter? Spring Garden offers a Hardy Chusan Palm that will withstand temperatures as low as -12. Although this only works in the southern and coastal regions, as a patio tree it will stand out well into the fall for most of the country. The White Feather Hosta is another unique plant that will draw your eye with the brilliant leaves and lavender flowers. Hardy in zones 3 to 8, this hosta works for many gardens.

Both Veseys and Spring Garden have good warranties to back up their products. If you receive your shipment in a damaged state, be sure to contact the company right away. Both will offer a free replacement and in some cases, a refund. Plants are also guaranteed to thrive for the first year, provided the care directions were followed precisely.

Shipping is easy and fairly reasonable. Consider the price of gas and the value of your time sourcing out all of the seeds and plants you can choose in mail order catalogues. Shipping costs seem like a good deal in that light.

Browse through these two proudly Canadian grower’s catalogues and websites. Your gardening fever will keep rising and you’re sure to find that special specimen to complete your yard… at least for now.


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