This is a wonderful day. Too cold and rainy to be outside much and just right for lining up the seeds that need cold stratification to bloom next year.
Seeds to plant starting this month include most tree seeds, Annual Phlox, Poppy, Virginia Bluebells, Hellebore, Roses, Monkshood, etc.
You can buy a generous amount of seed, mix it with vermiculite-sand and scatter it. Or, to reduce the amount of seed lost to birds and flood, you can plant the seeds in pots and flats and transplant them in the early spring.
Seeds that need the constant cold and wet of winter will do better outside. Alchemy-Works has a thorough column on the topic.
In addition to perennial shrubs, trees and flowers, many native plants need 60-days of moist cold.
Prairie Moon Nursery has these plants listed separately in their online store.
Click here to see their list.
Then, of course there is the master list at Tom Clothier's site. Not to be missed for serious seed starters. And, for the same crowd, the Thompson Morgan seed starting database at Backyard Gardener.
BOUGHT MORE SEEDS
So, this morning I bought seeds to fall-winter-plant in the back wooded area of our little place. Specifically, I ordered one-eighth ounce Virginia Bluebells seed. Prairie Moon's site says that a packet is 92-seeds (who counts them?) and that an ounce is 9,700 seeds. So, I figured that the eighth ounce would give a good show.
Also ordered for the back area Sweet Flag, Lead Plant, Asclepias purpurascens - Purple Milkweed, and Eupatorium purpureum - Sweet Joe Pye Weed.
All for the butterflies and their friends, you know.
WHAT'S GAUDY TO ONE GARDENER IS ____ TO ANOTHER
Leafing through old magazines in the great 2008 clean out that is happening here, I saw an article in which Steve Bender at Southern Living referred to Purple Majesty Millet as gaudy.
It does not seem gaudy at all here on our place, but maybe because we have so much space.
Then, I found a NYT article in which Tony Avent called Agapanthus and Kniphofia gaudy.
In fact the quote from the article is, They're great, tacky, gaudy plants, Mr. Avent said, and I think that's why they're becoming popular. People are inherently tacky and gaudy, and at certain times in history that becomes acceptable.
OK tacky and gaudy plant lovers. Let's all stand up and be counted.