ABC Wednesday - R is for...

...RHS Seed Scheme

What a timely R this has turned out to be! I've just had my reminder from the RHS that now's the time to get my seed order in to them. Each year, RHS members are offered a choice of seed saved from the various RHS gardens. This year's catalogue runs to 23 pages, so there's quite a variety of seed on offer. It's not just choice specimens, there's plenty of the kind of plants everyone wants to grow in their gardens, so this is a good way to obtain or try new varieties, but from a prestigious source. Up to 20 packets can be ordered for a fee of £10 - which covers collecting, drying and administration costs.

You may remember the arrival of my previous order earlier this year and my consternation that most of it was from the 'challenging to grow spectrum' as most of them either take a long time to germinate or need particular treatment such as cold stratification, or both. This year, I'm going to sit down with a large cup of coffee, last year's seed sowing instructions, my seed collecting book plus my garden wants list and make sure I order seeds where I'll see the results next summer!

Further information on the RHS seed scheme can be found here - however, do note this is only available to RHS members.

For more Really good Reading on the theme of R, do have a look at the ABC Wednesday anthology blog.


  1. Hard work, but the rewards of seed planting are tenfold.

    Mine's up I just can't sign into mr linky. Did you have the same problem?

  2. Perfect timing for you, VP! This sounds like quite an opportunity for members, though I think your plan to think through your choices to pick seeds that will not require so much work sounds like a worthwhile idea.

  3. I wonder if we have a similar program here in the USA? I'm just getting into gardening...hope it gets better and better - my gardening abilities, that is!
    Neat ABC post!

  4. What a unique post for the letter R on ABC Wednesday.
    I hope all your RESEARCH on your seed planting is REWARDING for you.

    Bear((( )))

  5. Hi - I have often wondered about the RHS's seed service. I havent joined the RHS yet as I tend to empathise with the comments JAS made recently. Luckily for me the CGS has a similar scheme which is cheaper!!!!

  6. VP, did any of your seeds grow last year? I looked at the list but just haven't had the time to work out which seeds to request - it will probably be another year I don't get any seeds from the RHS. In all the years I have been a member I have never sent for any but... I may have another look!

    Hope you enjoy putting your list together. Best wishes Sylvia

  7. VP,

    Twenty three pages of's like looking through the Chiltern Catalog! A great deal of fun...Yes? I like the scatter the seeds on the ground method so my list would consist of the plants that self seed;-)


  8. The RHS does great work in making sure older or more unusual varieties of plants do not die out - and I'm sure this seed saving scheme is crucial to that. Also of course, it means you can get what you need! Great idea!

  9. Funnily enough I was looking through this list last night. How did your 2008 seeds fare? If I remember rightly you had chosen some seeds of shrubs. I hope that some of them have germinated by now.
    PS The word verification seems to be getting more fascinating of late - my drear for this post which seems very apt for a most dreary November day.

  10. Hi ABCers I'll head ober and comment over at your places. Glad you enjoyed your visit :)

    PG - that's why I was asking you about the CGS scheme. I have reservations about the RHS too - I've a post in preparation, it just a matter of whether I have enough to say that's sufficiently different to what JAS et al. have said so well already. It was part of this post originally, but it was like putting half a lemon and half an orange together...

    Sylvia - all the seeds I had take a year or more to germinate, so I don't know yet!

    Gail - it's a rather nice thing to do. So far I've avoided lots of self sowers as I'm afraid they'd take over the garden or create too much work. However, I am beginning to have a more relaxed attitude to things, so you never know what may appear on my list!

    Anna - see my reply to Sylvia. They were mainly bulbs. And yes, the WV is a hoot lots of times at the moment!


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