Online Seed Catalogues Sarah Waters, Harvest Growing Officer
Ordering your seeds online and don’t know where to start? Here’s a list of some of our favourite seed companies. If you’re looking for something a bit different, organic, or steering clear of mass produced hybrids, there’s a seed catalogue for everyone.
Real Seeds www.realseeds.co.uk
Real Seeds is a family-based company based in Wales with a select and exciting range of vegetable seeds. All the varieties offered in the catalogue are also grown for their own family use, so that they have a really personal knowledge of how well each plant grows and tastes. Real Seeds don’t sell any genetically modified or hybrid
plants such as F1s. Instead, they offer seeds, many of them heirlooms, which are bred to deal with a variety of soil and environmental conditions. For something different try the Achocha seeds. These were described in our taste test as ‘a cross between a melon and a cucumber’ and look like small, spikey round cucumbers.
Rebekahs Veg www.rebekahsveg.org.uk
This catalogue is a salad grower’s heaven. It has an amazing choice of cut and come salad and oriental leaves, as well as original salad mixes. Try the Mizuna ‘Red Knight’ for fresh salad leaves all through the harsh winter months, or the Crunchy Pak Choi mix to give colour to your stir fries. Rebekahs Veg also has a great selection of many other vegetables including lots of heirloom varieties. All seed packets are £1 and there is free delivery over £5
Wallis Seeds www.wallis-seeds.co.uk
Wallis seeds is a well-established small family business based in Kent, offering a good choice of flower and vegetable seeds. The website isn’t the easiest to navigate as there are no pictures and it can take a while to find varieties. However, with packets starting at 45p
and many seeds under £1 this is one of the cheapest, good quality online seed sites.
Tamar Organics www.tamarorganics.co.uk
This Soil Association certified organic gardening company offers a range of organic products for the gardener. As
well as seeds you can buy compost, pest control products, fruit, potatoes, garlic and onion bulbs. The seeds are cheaper than some other
organic seed sites and there’s a good range of varieties.
A reasonably priced, well established company offering vegetable and flower seeds. Kings has a huge selection of seeds on an easy to use website with pictures and good descriptions of the plants.
There’s lot of information about how and when to grow the seeds, which is especially useful if you are new to growing. The site has a handy guide to crop yields so you can plan your plot without too many gluts.
Heritage Seed Library www.gardenorganic.org.uk/hsl
The Heritage Seed Library protects and gives access to many vegetable varieties that aren’t widely available. Through conserving rare and unusual seeds, the library has saved hundreds of vegetables that would otherwise be extinct. Look out for the beautiful, tastes as good as it looks, ‘Crimson Flowered’ Broad Beans or the super hardy ‘Broad Ripple Yellow Currant’ tomato. Membership costs £20 and includes 6 packets of seeds,
3 membership newsletters and a chance to swap seeds with other members.
Association Kokopelli www.kokopelli-seeds.com
Association Kokopelli has an interesting history. Originally named Terre de Semences this seed company was set up in 1998 by Dominique Guillet to protect seed diversity. The company employed 45 workers marginalised by society because of mental health, disabilities or prison records to conserve vegetable varieties marginalised by big international seeds companies, stringent seed laws and genetic modification. Terre de Semences ceased trading as a company in 2000 unable to comply with the French government’s costly and strict seed regulations. The company was renamed Kokopelli and reformed as a non-profit organisation. Since then Kokopelli has blossomed with branches in the UK, Belgium, Germany, Italy, and Brazil. Check out the website for an extensive catalogue of non-
commercial, and heritage varieties including ‘Purple Martian’ sweet corn and ‘Sweet White Beauty’ tomatoes.
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