Even as new life is busting out all over, heralding the start of a new growing season, it's time to think about seeds. My crisper drawer is overflowing with seeds again (many collected from the garden) and I have plans and lots of spaces to fill. I have the voles to thank for a good number of these spaces; even with Prissy on the prowl, the voles are probably responsible for many of the losses over the winter and erasing some of the headway that was made the year before. Prissy has been earning her keep as of late though; she catches at least one or two a day. Tommy, on the other hand, prefers a more decorative role.
Last year I collected several pods worth of seeds from Baptisia 'Prairie Twilite Blues'. Not with any particular plan in mind, but I saw seeds and felt the need to collect them. PTB is a strange brew of colors: the flowers start off a chocolate/violet blend with yellow edging (you can see it on the bottom and far right of the below picture) and mellow to a warm smoky lavender.
pictures are from May 2011
I put a couple of seedlings out into the garden this year and a few seedlings came up at the base of the parent plant too. If they make it I wonder how they will turn out.
This year if I start more Baptisia seedlings, I'm going to keep them in pots for at least one year or eighteen months. I start so many plants from seed that from time to time I'm swept with this irrational urge to clear the front porch and plant a bunch of them out, but Baptisia are slower growing than a lot of other perennials. As ironclad as they are as mature plants, they stay tiny for a long time when young.
There are also a couple of other hybrids I'd love to add to my garden: Baptisia x 'Midnight', and Baptisia x bicolor 'Starlite'. I'm not sure exactly what 'Midnight' is like since the pictures on the internet look even stanger than those of 'Prairie Twilite Blues', but it sounds intriguing and 'Starlite' just looks really lovely, a soft romantic violet-lavender-shading-to-white blend of colors.
In addition to seeds from the garden, March is the month that we receive the Southeastern native plant seed list from the NC Botanical Garden. This year I'm opting to try:
Sandy Woods Chaffhead
Grass-Leaf Barbara's Buttons (Marshallia graminifolia)
Piedmont Barbara's Buttons (Marshallia obovata)
Two-Leaf Bishop's Cap (Mitella diphylla). See more pictures here.
Savannah Meadow-Beauty (Rhexia alifanus)
Rose Pink (Sabatia angularis)
Alleghany Mountain Golden-Banner (Thermopsis mollis)
Sourwood Now Sourwoods already grow wild here, but I didn't collect any seeds last year and now I have new plans that include a trio of Sourwoods.
Soon I will post pictures of the wildflowers growing around here, but I'm too tired tonight from working outside! Join Gail at clay and limstone for more wonderful Wildflower Wednesdays.