Category Archives: Articles and Instructions

Artichokes are heat-loving plants of the large family, Asteraceae. The genus Cynara includes eight other wild, thistle-like plants, including C. humilis, which was grown as a food crop in North Africa. Some people grow these plants for their splendid purple flower heads and striking foliage. The plants, with their silvery foliage, can grow to 3m […]

Prior to the 18th century, scientists struggled to find conventions with which to categorize organisms. In the 1730s, the visionary Swedish biologist Carl Linnaeus developed a system of taxonomy (called binomial nomenclature), which assigned Latin names to all living things. This conveniently allowed groups of similar plants and animals to be bundled according to their […]

The weather outdoors is cold and gloomy. Here on the coast it is altogether wet — the ground is sodden and squishy. Elsewhere, the first blankets of snow are falling, and the ground is freezing hard. Only the most spirited of winter gardeners are still making trips to the greenhouse, low tunnels, or raised beds […]

Every fall people ask us how to harvest quinoa. These tall plants produce masses of seeds, each seed resulting from the pollination of a single flower in their beautiful inflorescences (flower clusters). When the seeds are fully ripe and ready for harvest, they will fall out of the seed head easily. If part of the […]

West Coast Seeds is pleased to announce that we will shortly be moving our offices and warehouse. We will be moving to a beautifully renovated barn on a fifteen acre, certified organic farm here in Ladner. We have been hurting for space for over a year, and this move will allow us some breathing room […]

It’s September, and much of the garden has been put to bed. Heat loving summer crops have all but withered: Sunflower heads have been cut for drying, tomatoes have been picked green and brought indoors, and pumpkins sit bright and orange while the rest of the plants have succumbed to mildew and the season’s end. […]

The first average frost date for Lower Mainland BC is November 2. This date is reflected pretty closely from the Sunshine Coast and Gulf Islands, coastal Vancouver Island, Puget Sound, and down to the Willamette Valley in Oregon. That means we have approximately eleven weeks of growing time before we can reasonably expect the cold […]

Not so much an official trial, as an effort to grow out each of our sweet peas for comparative study. We grew out fifteen varieties among the other flowers and vegetables at our Kirkland House demonstration garden here in Ladner this year, creating one of the most fragrant garden experiences of all time. The sweet […]

Here’s our list of seeds to start in August for fall and winter harvests. These fast-growing seeds are cold hardy, and will thrive as the nights get cooler in late August and September. Check the first average frost date for your area. In the Lower Mainland of BC, the first frost date is not usually […]

Whether the goal is to harvest tender, immature “new potatoes,” or to harvest fully mature potatoes for storage and use over the fall and winter, it’s helpful to follow some basic guidelines on how and when to harvest potatoes. Our Certified Organic seed potatoes ship in March. Order now! New Potatoes All potato varieties can […]