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Winter Sowing for 2022

YessicaHaircutYessicaHaircut Sussex coastPosts: 101
I decided to start my winter sowing this morning - mainly because I got seeds for xmas and this is the first day it's been dry and I've had enough motivation (had a merry covid Christmas) to get out in the garden for a potter.

Does anyone else use Trudi Davidoff's Winter Sowing Method? I just started gardening in early summer of last year, and I'm finding one of my favourite things is to play around with techniques, timing etc and just see what works and what doesn't. I'm enjoying the experiential learning aspect of it and embracing my failures as well as my successes. The most appealing thing about the idea of winter sowing was how much it will potentially allow me to grow from seed - my garden is new and I'm new to gardening so I want to grow lots of plants and get to know what is happy here and which plants bring me joy.

I know @CharlotteF mentioned a while a go that she was collecting containers to give winter sowing a go this year, and I thought it might be nice to have a thread where we can share our progress. If anyone else is Winter Sowing this year or has done in the past and has some experiences to share, it would be great to hear from you. If anyone is curious about the method, there's a run down from Trudi Davidoff here:

I also found this webinar useful: 

I started today with Verbena bonariensis, mixed hardy geraniums, Salvia patens, Eucalyptus and Heuchera hybrids.


  • YessicaHaircutYessicaHaircut Sussex coastPosts: 101
    My Winter Sowing containers are on the top shelf. Below them are some violas I wanted to bloom over the winter, but I sowed them way too late in the autumn - that whole experiential learning thing. ;) No matter, I'll enjoy them whenever they come into bloom. :)
  • newbie77newbie77 LondonPosts: 1,220
    edited 1 January
    I used to do it couple of years is very interesting method and used to keep me busy at this time of year. We don't have snow so it is a bit like mini coldframes for seeds. I don't do many perennials these days and have got a garden fairly mature now. 

    It is nice to see your post and photos and reminded me of my early gardening years. 
  • I always sow my onion seed on New Years Day. An annual ritual. I keep them in a double glazed unheated conservatory. I pot them on individually when they are big enough. Exactly when depends on weather conditions from now until Spring.
  • thevictorianthevictorian Posts: 408
    I've seen a few people do this and I've been tempted to give it a try but not done so yet. 
  • YessicaHaircutYessicaHaircut Sussex coastPosts: 101
    Yes it's definitely nice to have something garden related to get cracking with in the new year, @newbie77. Did you have any particular successes or abject failures?

    I love a good ritual, @Joyce Goldenlily. :) I've not grown onions before - when can you expect to harvest the ones sown at New Year?

    Ah go on, @thevictorianzFH0qqPW, give it a little go. :D
  • thevictorianthevictorian Posts: 408
    I will give it a go. I've got to go through my seeds and if I find any that might work then I'll pop them in. We always sell any excess we have for charity so it might be nice to offer larger plants earlier if it works.
  • YessicaHaircutYessicaHaircut Sussex coastPosts: 101
    Yay! From reading on the Winter Sowing FB group, I've been really surprised at some of the plants people have great success with, even with half hardy annuals. If I have enough seeds, I'm planning on trying winter/spring sowing some seeds even for the plants I plan to start in my conservatory. It should make for an interesting comparison between those started indoors and outdoors.
  • The main problem with very early sowing is the seedlings can get very leggy and spindly due to lack of light. It is of course, that much extra work to keep young plants going until the weather is warm enough to move them outside. quite a few seed will germinate then just sit and wait for better weather so you do not gain anything. A friend always used to sow his tomato seed in Jan/Feb. It produced rather blue "chilled" seedlings and mine, sown later in Spring, always caught up with his. It was just to say his tomatoes were in fruit earlier than anyone else. A week or two perhaps. I never felt it was worth the effort.
    However, I am sure you will have fun experimenting. Another problem is damping off in seedlings but some plants could be perfectly happy. There are many self sown seed which germinate outside. Lobelia is one, viburnum bonariensis is another. Marigolds and love in the mist, various grasses, sweet william and cyclamen coum etc. Go for it and enjoy.
    Every year I try to grow something I have never grown before. I have discovered some beauties, like the Snail Vine. 
  • newbie77newbie77 LondonPosts: 1,220
    edited 4 January
    @Joyce Goldenlily, in winter sowing seeds and seedlings are always outside just protected by some sort of plastic container.

    @YessicaHaircut I had success with lots of perennials. My problem is even the very good size perennials or mature ones gets eaten by slugs and snails so I have limited myself to now very small selection of perennials. I am mostly into combination of evergreen shrubs and rose gardening now. 
  • Oh my word yes! This yearI have lost most of my autumn sown sweetpeas to mice digging up the pea seed to eat and slugs and snails demolish most tender shoots before they see light of day.
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