Gardening Knowledge

Garden Knowledge is the accumulation of years of tips, tricks, and techniques from West Coast Seeds. It is timeless, and it is cyclical. It follows the calendar year closely as the seasons change. It follows us into the kitchen with recipe ideas and it taps us on the shoulder with gentle reminders. These articles and blog entries cover many subjects, but we hope they help uncover new ideas and solve garden challenges. There is no “correct” way to garden, but there are many wise ways to garden.

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This annual Rudbeckia is commonly known as Black Eyed Susan, but also answers to such folksy names as Brown Betty, Brown Daisy, Brown Eyed Susan, Golden Jerusalem, Poor-land Daisy, Yellow Daisy, and Yellow Ox-Eye Daisy. This wonderful, fun flower comes in so many shapes, sizes and colours. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Rudbeckia from seed.

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This annual Rudbeckia is commonly known as Black Eyed Susan, but also answers to such folksy names as Brown Betty, Brown Daisy, Brown Eyed Susan, Golden Jerusalem, Poor-land Daisy, Yellow Daisy, and Yellow Ox-Eye Daisy. This wonderful, fun flower comes in so many shapes, sizes and colours. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Rudbeckia from seed.

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This low-growing space filler will work in sun to partial shade, producing flowers that feed pollinators, followed by seeds that feed wild songbirds. This member of the mint family is also edible in salads and tea blends. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Prunella from seed.

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This low-growing space filler will work in sun to partial shade, producing flowers that feed pollinators, followed by seeds that feed wild songbirds. This member of the mint family is also edible in salads and tea blends. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Prunella from seed.

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These annual and perennial flowering plants have striking similarities, but a surprising range of colours and growth habits. It is easy to grow poppies from seeds. In the right setting, they grow and then self-sow with abandon, without becoming weedy. They will thrive for years at a time in surprising spots, like a crack in the driveway.

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These annual and perennial flowering plants have striking similarities, but a surprising range of colours and growth habits. It is easy to grow poppies from seeds. In the right setting, they grow and then self-sow with abandon, without becoming weedy. They will thrive for years at a time in surprising spots, like a crack in the driveway.

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Plectritis is a member of the honeysuckle family that is native to western North America, from Vancouver Island to southern California. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Plectritis from seed.

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Plectritis is a member of the honeysuckle family that is native to western North America, from Vancouver Island to southern California. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Plectritis from seed.

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The genus Physalis includes the edible ground cherry (aka Cape Gooseberry) and tomatillo, but the plant in question here is strictly ornamental. It is grown for its bright orange “Chinese Lantern” seed cases that follow rather inconspicuous flowers in late summer. Whole stems can be picked for drying, or the seed cases can be dried individually for use in flower arrangements, or even as Christmas tree decorations. Continue reading below for some expert tips on how to grow Physalis from seed.

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The genus Physalis includes the edible ground cherry (aka Cape Gooseberry) and tomatillo, but the plant in question here is strictly ornamental. It is grown for its bright orange “Chinese Lantern” seed cases that follow rather inconspicuous flowers in late summer. Whole stems can be picked for drying, or the seed cases can be dried individually for use in flower arrangements, or even as Christmas tree decorations. Continue reading below for some expert tips on how to grow Physalis from seed.

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Our annual phlox is a cultivar of Phlox drummondii, which is native to Texas, but found in numerous other states. It is a low-growing meadow wildflower that works well on its own, or planted with others in containers or raised beds. Continue reading below for some tips on how to grow phlox from seed.

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Our annual phlox is a cultivar of Phlox drummondii, which is native to Texas, but found in numerous other states. It is a low-growing meadow wildflower that works well on its own, or planted with others in containers or raised beds. Continue reading below for some tips on how to grow phlox from seed.

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This easy-to-grow annual is one of the best pollinator attractors of all. Bees simply love the ample, long-lasting, purple flowers. It is often called Phacelia, Purple Tansy, Scorpion flower, or heliotrope. It is easy to plant and grow Phacelia from seed.

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This easy-to-grow annual is one of the best pollinator attractors of all. Bees simply love the ample, long-lasting, purple flowers. It is often called Phacelia, Purple Tansy, Scorpion flower, or heliotrope. It is easy to plant and grow Phacelia from seed.

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Pale Evening Primrose is an important BC wildflower that provides food for our native pollinators. Learn how to grow Oenothera in your garden to feed the bees and bring back this beautiful flower from endangered status. This flower is also known as Suncups and Sundrops. Oenothera. pallida is a short lived perennial plant that self sows, but is in no way invasive. In the right setting it may naturalize.

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Pale Evening Primrose is an important BC wildflower that provides food for our native pollinators. Learn how to grow Oenothera in your garden to feed the bees and bring back this beautiful flower from endangered status. This flower is also known as Suncups and Sundrops. Oenothera. pallida is a short lived perennial plant that self sows, but is in no way invasive. In the right setting it may naturalize.

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Nigella performs best in cooler growing areas, in ordinary, well-drained, pH-neutral soil. Fertilize and deadhead regularly, and water in long dry spells. It is easy to plant and grow Nigella seeds. Nigella may self sow, depending on conditions.

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Nigella performs best in cooler growing areas, in ordinary, well-drained, pH-neutral soil. Fertilize and deadhead regularly, and water in long dry spells. It is easy to plant and grow Nigella seeds. Nigella may self sow, depending on conditions.

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This relative of catnip in the mint family does not trigger the kitten-like behaviour in cats as catnip does. Although cats might graze on Nepeta leaves and flowers, it tends to not make them go crazy afterward. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Nepeta from seed.

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This relative of catnip in the mint family does not trigger the kitten-like behaviour in cats as catnip does. Although cats might graze on Nepeta leaves and flowers, it tends to not make them go crazy afterward. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Nepeta from seed.

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Nemophila menziesii is an annual that is known as Baby Blue Eyes. Cool, moist, light, well-drained soil is best. Grow in partial shade where summer soils get hot. Plants can die from excessive heat. Nemophila may self sow if conditions are right. Barely cover the tiny seeds. Aim for plant spacing at 10cm (4″). Tighter spacing is okay for this small species. It is easy to plant and grow Baby Blue Eyes Nemophila seeds.

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Nemophila menziesii is an annual that is known as Baby Blue Eyes. Cool, moist, light, well-drained soil is best. Grow in partial shade where summer soils get hot. Plants can die from excessive heat. Nemophila may self sow if conditions are right. Barely cover the tiny seeds. Aim for plant spacing at 10cm (4″). Tighter spacing is okay for this small species. It is easy to plant and grow Baby Blue Eyes Nemophila seeds.

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Nasturtiums thrive in poor to average, slightly acidic, well-drained soil. If growing in full sun, consider using some rocks around the plants to prevent their roots from getting too hot. In partial shade, plants tend to have larger leaves and a more sprawling habit. Keep watered during dry weather, and do not fertilize. Continue reading below for more tips on how to grow nasturtiums from seed as companions for Brassicas, cucumbers, melons, radishes, and tomatoes.

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Nasturtiums thrive in poor to average, slightly acidic, well-drained soil. If growing in full sun, consider using some rocks around the plants to prevent their roots from getting too hot. In partial shade, plants tend to have larger leaves and a more sprawling habit. Keep watered during dry weather, and do not fertilize. Continue reading below for more tips on how to grow nasturtiums from seed as companions for Brassicas, cucumbers, melons, radishes, and tomatoes.

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This is a challenging plant to grow, even for experienced and professional gardeners. With other kinds of poppies, one can just sprinkle the seeds and a few weeks later, like magic, the flowers appear. This is not the case with Meconopsis, which is considered difficult to germinate and grow. The plant is native to shady, humid forests in the Himalayas. Please follow our How to Grow Meconopsis instructions closely for the best results.

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This is a challenging plant to grow, even for experienced and professional gardeners. With other kinds of poppies, one can just sprinkle the seeds and a few weeks later, like magic, the flowers appear. This is not the case with Meconopsis, which is considered difficult to germinate and grow. The plant is native to shady, humid forests in the Himalayas. Please follow our How to Grow Meconopsis instructions closely for the best results.

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It’s a shame that so many gardeners confuse this annual morning glory with the invasive weed, Convovulus arvensis, because this variety will not take over the garden. Instead, it will produce a lush abundance of big, intensely blue flowers from midsummer on. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow morning glory from seed.

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It’s a shame that so many gardeners confuse this annual morning glory with the invasive weed, Convovulus arvensis, because this variety will not take over the garden. Instead, it will produce a lush abundance of big, intensely blue flowers from midsummer on. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow morning glory from seed.

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Expect sturdy, well-branched plants that produce an abundance of early bright, fragrant flowers. They are excellent for cutting. Stocks prefers cool growing conditions. In cold winter areas plant in earliest spring. Where winters are mild set out plants in early fall. Bloom begins in winter or early spring. These annual flowers are sometimes listed as Gillyflowers. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow stocks from seeds.

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Expect sturdy, well-branched plants that produce an abundance of early bright, fragrant flowers. They are excellent for cutting. Stocks prefers cool growing conditions. In cold winter areas plant in earliest spring. Where winters are mild set out plants in early fall. Bloom begins in winter or early spring. These annual flowers are sometimes listed as Gillyflowers. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow stocks from seeds.

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Marigolds are annual flowers that are easy to grow from seed and resilient. They can be grown in the garden, in containers, and they play a role in Companion Planting. Some even have edible flowers! Learn how to grow Marigolds from seed, and they will earn a place in your garden every year.

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Marigolds are annual flowers that are easy to grow from seed and resilient. They can be grown in the garden, in containers, and they play a role in Companion Planting. Some even have edible flowers! Learn how to grow Marigolds from seed, and they will earn a place in your garden every year.

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The pea-like flowers of lupins grow in dense spires above very distinctive foliage. They will bloom for two months from a spring sowing or early summer from fall sown plants. This cold hardy perennial is native to western North America, and east to Quebec. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow lupins from seed.

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The pea-like flowers of lupins grow in dense spires above very distinctive foliage. They will bloom for two months from a spring sowing or early summer from fall sown plants. This cold hardy perennial is native to western North America, and east to Quebec. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow lupins from seed.

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The information here refers to the annual (sometimes biennial) plant that is known as Lunaria annua. It also goes by the common names Honesty, Moonwort, Judas’ Penny, Satin Flower, Money Plant, and Silver Dollars. Planted early enough in the year, it will bloom in the first summer. Planted later, it will behave as a biennial, and bloom the following summer. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Lunaria from seed.

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The information here refers to the annual (sometimes biennial) plant that is known as Lunaria annua. It also goes by the common names Honesty, Moonwort, Judas’ Penny, Satin Flower, Money Plant, and Silver Dollars. Planted early enough in the year, it will bloom in the first summer. Planted later, it will behave as a biennial, and bloom the following summer. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Lunaria from seed.

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These familiar annuals have intensely coloured flowers. They are sometimes listed as Edging Lobelia. They work very well as filler plants in window boxes, hanging baskets, and garden borders. The vivid blue flowers are highly attractive to butterflies and other pollinators. Continue reading below for some expert advice on how to grow Lobelia from seed.

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These familiar annuals have intensely coloured flowers. They are sometimes listed as Edging Lobelia. They work very well as filler plants in window boxes, hanging baskets, and garden borders. The vivid blue flowers are highly attractive to butterflies and other pollinators. Continue reading below for some expert advice on how to grow Lobelia from seed.

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The Linum species we offer are annual flowering flax. They are beautiful and easy and suitable for large containers. Linum grandiflorum is native to Algeria. Linum usitatissimum is thought to be native to central Asia. All species are attractive to pollinators and other beneficial insects. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Linum from seed.

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The Linum species we offer are annual flowering flax. They are beautiful and easy and suitable for large containers. Linum grandiflorum is native to Algeria. Linum usitatissimum is thought to be native to central Asia. All species are attractive to pollinators and other beneficial insects. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Linum from seed.

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Annual Lavatera is also known as Mallow or Annual Tree Mallow. It is an easy-to-grow annual that blooms in the first year. The Latin species name trimestris translates as "three months," referring to the plant's quick life cycle. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Lavatera from seed.

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Annual Lavatera is also known as Mallow or Annual Tree Mallow. It is an easy-to-grow annual that blooms in the first year. The Latin species name trimestris translates as "three months," referring to the plant's quick life cycle. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Lavatera from seed.

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This cottage garden classic originated in China, but was imported to English gardens around the 15th century. Hollyhocks defy the simple definition of annual, biennial, and perennial depending on when, where, and how they are planted. Technically, this species is a short lived perennial. If started early enough indoors, it will flower the first year and can be treated as an annual. Planted later in spring, it will bloom in the second year as a traditional biennial. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow hollyhocks from seed.

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This cottage garden classic originated in China, but was imported to English gardens around the 15th century. Hollyhocks defy the simple definition of annual, biennial, and perennial depending on when, where, and how they are planted. Technically, this species is a short lived perennial. If started early enough indoors, it will flower the first year and can be treated as an annual. Planted later in spring, it will bloom in the second year as a traditional biennial. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow hollyhocks from seed.

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This dependable perennial blooms from late summer into fall with numerous bright yellow pin-cushion flowers atop tall stems. It looks superb in mass plantings, or planted between clumps of Crocosmia. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Helenium from seed.

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This dependable perennial blooms from late summer into fall with numerous bright yellow pin-cushion flowers atop tall stems. It looks superb in mass plantings, or planted between clumps of Crocosmia. Continue reading below for tips on how to grow Helenium from seed.

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Continue reading below for some tips on how to grow Gilia from seed. Gilia is a lovely annual wildflower that really stands out in mass plantings, and is a heavy nectar producer, so a very good lure for bees and other beneficial insects. It is one of the easiest flowers to grow and its short height make it a nice addition to lawns.

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Continue reading below for some tips on how to grow Gilia from seed. Gilia is a lovely annual wildflower that really stands out in mass plantings, and is a heavy nectar producer, so a very good lure for bees and other beneficial insects. It is one of the easiest flowers to grow and its short height make it a nice addition to lawns.

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