06 January 2016

Allison Barlow of Select Seeds

Swallowwort
Asclepias incarnata
After thoroughly browsing the 2016 plant and seed catalog from Select Seed, I called one of the owners, Allison Barlow to ask a few questions.

One of the things that I noticed about their catalog is that they mix seeds and plants on each page which is unlike most catalogs with seeds in one section, plants separated out into another section.

"Once we started growing our own plants in our greenhouse, we thought that mixing them in the catalog showcased them better," Allison said.

Select Seeds greenhouse is on their own property. Allison said that they also have a small organic garden for growing their own organic seeds in-house.

If you read the catalog, you may notice, as I did, that their seed packets have unusual seed counts such as 58 Clary Sage seeds, 372 Dreadlocks Amaranth seeds, 113 Phlox Cherry Caramel seeds.

Most catalogs use round numbers - 250, 100, etc.

"We measure our seeds by gram," Allison said. "Rather than listing grams that can be ordered we converted the gram weight to average number of seeds per gram."

Makes sense to me.

Tithonia Torch
The item that I thought was a cool idea is their Butterfly Garden - Top 10 Nectar and Host Flowers for $19.99. What confused me was the list of plant seeds included when I compared it to the number of packets/seeds included.

Here's the clarification. For $19.99 you will receive around 1500 seeds, including a packet each of Zinnia, Cosmos, Coneflower, Tithonia, Sunflower, Liatris, Tall Verbena, Sweet Scabious.
In addition there will be a mixed packet containing seeds of Fennel, Parsley and Malva to feed caterpillars PLUS Monarch caterpillar food - one packet containing Butterfly Weed (the photo is Asclepias tuberosa or Tropical Milkweed), Milkweed (Showy or Common) and Red Swallowwort ( which is Asclepias incarnata).

Anoda Cristata
Snow Cup
One of the unique plants they sell is Wild Cotton, Anoda Cristata Snow Cup. Grows 3-4 feet tall and looks like cotton, of course.

It's in the Mallow family so you'll see the resemblance to the pink mallow we've seen growing. Cold hardy in zones 9-11.

The online store is well laid out with sections for scented flowers, deer resistant, shade, etc.

The scented fragrant section alone has 130 items for your spring dreaming delights.

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