Plant enthusiasts start their own seed for a variety of reasons – to get many plants for the price of a package, to grow rare or unusual varieties and, if you save your own seed, to give your plants the genetic advantage that comes as each generation adapts a little better to the conditions in your garden.
Growing from seed also fosters a more intimate relationship with your plants. You learn to recognize a species or variety immediately, no matter how young the seedling. This can be very helpful when weeding. Not all weeds are undesirable; they may be future prize specimens that happen to be crowding out something else you like – if you recognize them, you can move them to grow on elsewhere.
If you’re a beginner, it’s best to go with the easier plants. These are the ones that need only moisture, warmth and light to germinate and start growing.
Among the natives, two good ones are Anise Hyssop (Agastache foeniculum) and Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpureum). The Anise Hysssop starts germinating within a few days, the Purple Coneflower gets going at about the 10-day mark. These are both truly lovely native plants that are also major pollinator pleasers, attractive to bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. Butterfly Weed (Aesclepias tuberosa) and Bee Balm (various species of Monarda) are also easy starters. Check my seed list
for other warm germinators. Read more