I Love My Seed Boxes

There I’ve said it.  Does that make me weird?  Well, so be it.  It’s just that they hold such promise.  Such potential.  Opening one is always a pleasure and a reminder of what can be (and conversely, of what wasn’t to be).  But I do find that the seed box itself has to be interesting and even beautiful if possible.  Not just a Tupperware container (there – I’ve instantly alienated everyone who keeps their seeds in a Tupperware container.  Oops).

One of my two seed boxes holds vegetable seeds; the other flower seeds.

Whenever I go into a charity shop, I keep an eye (or two) peeled for a nice, potential seed box.  I already have two because I’m not terribly good at throwing seeds away.

And so my stash of seeds has grown.  And grown.  And grown.  Take these ‘Miss Wilmott’s Ghost’ seeds for example.  I’ve often done what Miss Wilmott herself was supposed to have done.*  Scattering the seeds in appropriate places in the Priory gardens.  Without any success incidentally though I have grown a couple of plants from pot sown seeds.  Still, I can’t bring myself to throw them away and though the seeds are old now, I still sprinkle them about the place in the hope they might take.  Besides, I bought them at Great Dixter and I love the packaging.

The problem then with not throwing seeds away is that my ‘boxes are filling up and the charity-shop shelves are bare.  Then my Dad gave me a whisky box (sadly sans 40 year old whisky)

And what potential, what promise, what embryonic possibilities will soon be kept in it.  Now, where’s my seed catalogue?  I must fill it up without delay.

*Ellen Willmott was said to have secretly sown the seeds of this tall, handsome sea holly into the gardens of friends.

22 thoughts on “I Love My Seed Boxes

  1. Pity about the whisky, but what an excellent box. I’m afraid I keep my seeds in plastic boxes with snap clip lids, in the probably mistaken belief that they will last better that way. Also they are big enough for me to be able to put month dividers in them. Well, old envelopes actually, but you get the picture. Not having enough room in the fridge, which I understand is the best place to keep them. If I ever get to move and unpack my many currently squirreled away in dark corners belongings, I have a couple of nice wooden boxes that would be perfect. And if anyone should feel like giving me whisky, I shall request that it come in a wooden box!! Though at the rate I am going, I will soon need a trunk…

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    • Hi Janet, goodness. Dividers? Snap down lids? (And just see outofmyshed’s comment re fridges). My fusty old boxes crammed full of a mish mash of mixed seed packets suddenly seems terribly disorganised. I shall need to up my game. (My Dad & I did share a little of the whisky while watching Great Expectations at Christmas. Just a little). A trunk of seeds, eh? Wow!

      Dave

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    • Karen, very sadly I haven’t got a potting shed. Though there is a tumbledown, brick outbuilding which would be perfect for me to totter into on cold winter mornings and do the pottin’ ….. when I’m old, grey and gnarled. About 2015 then. I need to nag the owners. Wish me luck.

      Dave

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  2. You had me fooled for a moment…thought that whiskey box was some kind of Paul ‘Not A Lot’ Daniels miniature magic box for slicing a small, buxom and scantily dressed woman into pieces or a medieval head-chopping-off gadget. It was a seed-box-to-be all the time!! DOH!!

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  3. I finally got round to sorting out my seed box, an old ice cream tub at the start of this year. I had some very old seeds, packets that had split and emptied their seed everywhere and other packets that had no name on them so I had no idea what was in them. Amongst these were quite a few packets that I donated to a local community garden so that I could start a fresh. It’s only my 2nd year on my allotment so I wanted to try quite a few different varieties. I do like the idea of a bit of seed scattering. I spotted a flower bed in the village the other day and I thought I might go out one night and scatter a bit of a mix there to liven things up.

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    • Yeah, my seeds do need a bit of a sorting out. Waiting for that really rainy day. Everyone seems to be into the idea of guerilla gardening! Just found out that there is a local, big seed swap in a couple of weeks. I shall have to attend.

      Dave

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  4. Dear Dave, although I greatly admire your alluring seed boxes, i have to admit to keeping my seeds in a tupperware boxes in the fridge. Although not quite so aesthetically pleasing, I love them too. One for flowers and one for veg of course. And I had to buy a special little fridge for my seeds, as someone was getting really fed up that the tupperware boxes were getting bigger and bigger and taking over the big fridge, otherwise used to store ingredients for our dinners. Tricky.
    I end up too, Guerilla style, scattering seeds in unloved front gardens, tree pits, car parks etc. whenever I discover the spilled contents of a seed packet in my bag. Thanks for great post!

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    • Wow, a seed fridge. That’s very impressive. I now feel left behind in the great seed storage scheme of things. Canny though – I shall immediately start filling our big fridge with seeds and then begin the argument that a seed fridge is the solution. I have never guerilla scattered seeds before. Time to start.

      Thanks for visiting

      Dave

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  5. I like beautiful old boxes for my seeds too. Dan Pearson talked about scattering all his old seed on a spare bit of soil and waiting ….
    I tried the scattering of Miss Wilmott’s Ghost around this garden and so far have been unsuccessful with that method, but I do love the story. We grew eryngium giganteum in Orkney and it did self seed there. So what’s different?

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  6. Love your seed boxes – like you I keep an eye out for something appropriate but only have a flip top filing box – a large margarine carton and a shoe box at the moment. I have far more seeds than I will ever use but it has become a compulsion that I cannot resist.

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    • Hmm, least I’m not the only one, Elaine. I have a ridiculous number of sweetpea seeds for example, some of which, having grown, I don’t even like. I need to go to a seed swapshop, I think.

      Dave

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