March 7th, 2012Newsbnewlook 0 Comments

While shopping at a discount store, we ran into a flower seed display. It was like hitting a long red light.

Did I buy any? That would be like me running into a bag of Chocolate Treasures – the peanut butter variety – and passing. Of course, I bought way too many. I am a self admitted chocoholic/flower addict. But the promise of color, sunshine and growing flowers was like a magnet.

Some packets were 10 cents a piece. Oh, please don’t make me buy 100 packets where they have to scan each one and the woman with the baby behind me wants to run me over with her cart because Junior needs a bottle.

What did I buy? I bought seeds that I know will have no problem growing. Even though I plant things for other folks as my line of work, I’m often pressed for time and know that my own garden cannot consist of plants that require too much attention.

One of the plants we picked out is the Cardinal Climber vine, a member of the morning glory family that grows a 6 to 15 feet a season and is the perfect way to attract hummingbirds to a porch.

I once won a $32 bet on this plant. I bet my friend that the porch would be covered before the end of summer. He looked at the little seed and shook his head. I took his money, but he discovered one of his favorite flowering vines for a mere $32. This year, a seed packed cost him only a quarter, so he has also learned a bargain when he sees it.

Another vine I picked up was the sweet pea, a fragrant large flowering plant that will climb a fence. I remember as a child thinking they were my favorite flower when I would visit my cousins and Aunt Bubbles.

The next packet I picked up contained sunflowers. Nothing says veggie garden like on of those. Not only that, but my cousin Mickey will undoubtedly pass me on the sidewalk and tell me he needs some sunflower seeds. I have heard from this girl that they get eaten by the deer, but I want to be prepared, anyway. The ones I planted in our vegetable garden last year grew to an amazing 12 feet and a few toppled over during a bad storm.

Also easy to grow from seeds are forget-me-nots and alyssum. The dainty blue flowers of forget-me-nots are the perfect spring companion to Delaware white azaleas and orange poppies. Once you see this combination of colors, you will know the meaning of complimentary colors. Alyssum comes in white or purple. The one secret is that after it blooms, it really needs to be sheared back to bloom again.

The other seeds I picked up are all also nice and easy. I found snapdragons. Except for occasionally getting rust, they provide summer-long color and seeds for the following year. Other favorites are African daisy because I love the yellow, orange and apricot soft tones, and regular Shasta daisy because I love traditional American gardens and a wildflower mix.

I found some Sweet William and remembered that they reminded me of one of my favorite bosses ever, Bill. We planted some at his house, and he remarked how well he liked them even before he knew their name. They are long, blooming and fragrant, and since he and his wife are two of the sweetest people I have ever met I will grow them in my garden and think of them with such affection.

OK, I went a little overboard and even bought some more bachelor buttons. Last year’s seeds gave me some blue, light and dark purple, white, and a weird burgundy color that I have never seen before. I saved many of the seeds, but I could not pass up more.

In addition to a wildflower mix, some foxglove, aster, cosmos and lavender found their way into my cart. Hey, I don’t know what to tell you. I enjoy the white stuff but I definitely need some color. Soon!

LesliePryor is a local landscaper. Her e-mail address is

OBSERVER-REPORTER – Sunday, March 6, 2005

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