It’s almost that time in Michigan to get started with indoor seedling! While I started out as a vegetable grower, each year more and more of my garden is taken up by growing cut flowers. Last year 70% of my garden was cut flowers. We even grew enough to have a little flower stand out by the road. I’m so excited this year that we are building a more permanent produce stand and will soon be able to share it with you all.
Benefits of Buying Cut Flower Seeds Vs. Plants
There are so many benefits to starting flowers from seed. First, you get get more bang for your buck in terms of the cost per plant. A large flat of snapdragons around here will cost $12-$24 depending on how many are in a case. With seeds you could grow 5x that amount for under $5 for the seeds and materials which if you reuse supplies cost next to nothing.
The other major benefit of buying cut flower seeds is you can be more selective about the variety and colors. Most greenhouses are going to stock only the biggest sellers so if you are looking for a specific queen lime zinnia for example, your best bet is to start from seed.
When do I shop for my seeds?
The best time to shop for your seeds is as soon as the companies release them for the year. I am talking about specifically annual seeds right now because perennial plants will sell and ship according to your growing zone. Floret is one of my go to sources for Zinnias and she usually announces on Instagram or email when her seeds go on sale. You have to pay attention because they sell quick!
Typically January – March is the best time to shop online for seeds because a lot of growing or seed starting seasons start in April.
What cut flower seeds should I start with?
I went in depth about the top three easiest flowers to grow from seed in a previous post but the best ones to start with are Zinnias, Cosmos and Celosia. All three come in a wide variety of sizes and colors.
How do I start a Cut Flower Garden?
You do not need a huge farm or garden to grow plenty of cut flowers. A simple 4×4 raised bed is enough to give you a couple of bouquets a week depending on what you decide to grow. You can read more about how to start a cut flower garden here but the basics are simply good soil, plenty of sun, water and consistent deadheading. If you have a friend with a larger greenhouse you might be able to start more off this way.
Things to look for when purchasing cut flower seeds
There are so many cut flower sources available and I’ve shopped from so many. The biggest thing I look for when ordering from a cut flower seed company is:
- Do they ship to my growing zone? (US, MICHIGAN)
- Do they offer a discount or free shipping if I buy a certain amount?
- Do they have a majority of what I’m looking for?
- Do the reviews talk about germination success?
- Does the company offer any sort of guarantee?
Where to buy cut flower seeds?
My top three favorite places for purchasing cut flower seeds are
Other great sources and suppliers of cut flower seeds
- Chiltern Seeds
- Renee’s Garden
- Territorial Seed
- Ardelia Farm
- Park Seed
- Seed Savers
- Hudson Valley Seed
- Gurneys Seeds
- Swallowtail Garden Seeds
- Select Seeds
- Jung Seeds
Remember, when making cut flower bouquets it doesn’t have to just be specifically flowers. There are so many beautiful vegetables that look great in arrangements like small eggplant or tiny tomatoes. Here is a full list of where to find amazing vegetable seeds.
My biggest advice with a cut flower garden is to pick 3-5 packets of flowers to start with and each year add a few more different varieties. Annual flowers that only last one growing season and typically die and stop producing after the first fall frost.
One of the benefits of growing annuals is while you are dead heading you can extract the seeds from the flowers for next year. The only thing better than beautiful heirloom flower seeds are FREE beautiful heirloom flower seeds.
Gardening is about learning and taking in the nature around you. Enjoy the process even the failures. Overtime you will find sources that work better for you than others and will grow to have your favorite seed suppliers.