one that compacts my cabinets ...
and makes near incessant demands on my time and energies. And yet I am helpless in its grip for loathe as I am to admit it to such august company, I am she who is unable to resist the ineffable lure, the limitless potential, the seductive promise of future glory ...
Oh, screw it, I save seeds. Which means I also save bags and jars and bottles and envelopes and tubs and cartons and cylinders and whatever other containers I think might serve my cause. As you can see from the picture below, this year I pressed old sushi trays into service. Now if only I could remember what plant these seeds came from ... I always think I'll remember or that I'll be able to recognize the seeds without difficulty and so I skip that pesky little step of LABELING them.
Don't think I can't hear what you're thinking. "Well, gee, that doesn't look so bad." Let's take a closer look, shall we?
This is one side of the table ...
And this is the other. (There are a few more bags & jars in the garage, but I didn't feel like hauling them in to be photographed.)I also have packets dating back to 1998, when KringleBob bestowed upon more than 20 lucky gardeners the gift of 200 some packages of seeds. It's a long story ... suffice it to say for now that 2 East Coast members of my e-mail group, the GardenBobs, discovered a dumpster full of discarded seed packets. Diving for delphiniums ... what a Christmas treat that box was!
Right about now I can hear you saying "hey, there's an awful lot of seed packets that obviously didn't come from your corner of Katy!" Well, damn skippy there are! Shoot, some of them are heirlooms, although not in the usual horticultural sense. The three packets below were my grandmother's; my mother found them amongst Grand's belongings after she died ... in 1978. The Burpee packet is Iceberg Candytuft (Iberis) and the two from Park Seeds are Chamomile and Curled Cress.
There are also some very special seeds, given to me by gardeners who are no longer with us and are saved because the handwriting on the labels is one of the few tangible memories I have of those dear friends.
And try as I might, I can't stop myself from buying more seeds. This is how gardeners gamble. We place a $2 bet, hoping to be rewarded with weeks or even months of glorious blooms. We can't help ourselves: we're sure that this is the season when every last seed will germinate and become a breathtaking vision of horticultural beauty. We're aided and abetted in our wagers by the purveyors of seed who seduce us with tantalizing descriptions and mesmerizing photographs.
By and large, though, it's seeds from the plants that grow here on my corner of Katy that I can't seem to stop saving. I cringe mightily at the thought of all the possibilities come to naught if I throw the spent seedheads in the trash. Some of them make their way into compost but way too many of them (at least I think so) still end up in the back of the big blue truck. I tell myself that perhaps somewhere in the landfill, an Echinacea or Gaillardia is brightening an otherwise dull horizon. It's a nice fantasy and it makes me smile.
Right now, though, if you'll excuse me? I have to go sort through all those seeds and clear the table before the Executive Producer sees it and starts fussing!