23.6 C
Niagara Falls
Wednesday, June 12, 2024
Niagara’s master gardeners will share expertise at seed sale and swap
Seedy Sunday, hosted by Master Gardeners Niagara, is Feb. 26 at St. Giles Presbyterian Church in St. Catharines. Supplied

Jo-Ann Fraser

Special to The Lake Report

Want to brighten your February, cultivate daydreams and be inspired to try something new in the garden?

Pop by the Master Gardeners of Niagara Seedy Sunday event where you can purchase or swap seeds.

Thousands of seed packets will be on sale for only 25 cents. Or, bring your own seeds and swap them for a similar package of seeds for free. 

“Seed swapping is an affordable and fun way to add diversity to your garden,” says Betty Knight, a master gardener in Niagara-on-the-Lake, who is excited about the number of native seeds available to the public this year. 

During the Sunday, Feb. 26, event, 43 kinds of native plant seeds and 26 types of tomato seeds will be available for sale.

It’s all free and will be held at the St. Giles Presbyterian Church, 205 Linwell Rd., St. Catharines from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Food bank donations will be collected.

“The Seed Exchange gives people a chance to experiment a little without investing a lot of money on seed packets or plants,” says Bev Campeau, chair of the sale, now in its fifth year.

“We’ll also have a variety of catalogues from vendors across Canada who sell unusual plant seeds.” 

The master gardeners want to encourage people to save and share native seeds, Campeau says.

“Our goal is to encourage gardeners to grow more native plants. You don’t need to be 100 per cent native, but adding a few native plants really helps the pollinators.”

While some may find saving and starting seeds a bit intimidating, there will be presentations and master gardeners on hand, including Knight.

“We’ll be answering questions and suggesting appropriate seeds for sunny, shady, dry or moist growing conditions,” she says. 

Knight organized the speakers for Seedy Sunday and is looking forward to hearing more about homesteading, biodiversity and a new strain of corn developed by Palatine Fruit & Roses on Four Mile Creek Road. 

“We also coach people on how to start seeds, save seeds and what to do to improve their germination rates,” adds Campeau. “It’s frustrating to save seeds only to have them not germinate the following year.”

Additionally, the master gardeners will share a wealth of broader gardening information.

“There is so much information on gardening available now,” says Campeau. “It can be overwhelming. Searching on growing carrots can yield 3,000 websites.”

The master gardeners want to cover the basics and explain what’s really needed to have a rewarding garden.

“Gardening is about trial and error and learning through others,” says Campeau.

The event is child-friendly, offering lots of activities to inspire younger gardeners. As a retired educator, Knight wants kids to come out and get their fingers dirty as they explore the fascinating world of seeds in the children’s area. 

“We want to capture the imagination of our children,” adds Campeau, who is also keen to engage youngsters.

“We want to get them interested in growing their own produce and growing native plants. We want to spark their creativity, imagination and interest.”

So, if you’ve always wanted to start your own seeds, want to learn more about starting seeds or want to spark your child or grandchild’s imagination, join the Master Gardeners of Niagara for what promises to be a very Seedy Sunday.

Subscribe to our mailing list