My neice finds seeds for most of her favorite vegetables, flowers and herbs, like this prolific chamomile, at Renee’s Garden.

Even after a few years of trying most of the seeds available from Renee’s Garden Seed catalog, my niece still wants to grow them all every year. Sadly, her compact garden and landscape designer father who thinks he owns it can not accommodate all the seeds that she wants. She is therefore forced to limit selection to her favorites and those that she has not yet tried.

‘Cupani’s Original’ and ‘Perfume Delight’ are still her favorite sweet peas because they are so very fragrant. The big softly blushed pale yellow flowers of ‘April in Paris’ are a close second. Although not as fragrant, I wanted her to try ‘Electric Blue’ for its shaggier darker green foliage and smaller but refined deep blue flowers.

Perhaps as a strategy for an alliance, my niece’s oppressive father planted ‘Buttercream’ nasturtiums, which was a new variety with semi-double cream colored flowers. She rebelled with the brilliant red shades of ‘Copper Sunset’. The softer orange shades of ‘Creamsicle’ was a diplomatic compromise.

Both could agree on the soft lavender and pink shades and white of ‘Gulf Winds’ alyssum, the rich deep pinks of ‘Mountain Garland’ clarkia, and the traditional ‘Mrs. Scott Elliot’ columbine, since all three are so complaisant with mixed annuals and perennials. Taller and more vigorous cosmos got their own space. ‘Dancing Petticoats’ provided a mixture of cheery pink shades. ‘White Seashells’ looked sharp against the deep green privet hedge.

Since utilitarian vegetable plants are inconsistent with such a designer landscape, my niece grew vegetables that are as flashy as foliage plants. I suggested richly colored ‘Scarlet Charlotte’ chard, with a bit of ‘Italian Silver’ that exhibits distinctive white petioles and veins. She went for the more colorful ‘Garden Rainbow’, ‘Neon Glow’ and ‘Bright Lights’.

Some (but not all) of Renee’s Garden vegetable seed mixes have a distinct advantage of color coding. The various seeds withing these mixes are dyed with different colors so they can be planted separately if desired. Since seed packets usually contain more seeds than are actually needed, vegetable seed mixes are a practical way to get fewer but enough of a few different types of seed in single packets.

More varieties of seeds are available from the online catalog of Renee’s Garden Seed at than at retail nurseries. Yet with so many fun varieties to try, the retail seed racks certainly have more selection than any garden really needs. If it were at all possible to try them all, my neice would have figured out how to do it already.


10 thoughts on “My niece loves!

  1. Those choices all sound wonderful. I have got far too many seeds this year already, but intend to grow a couple of vegetables in with the flowers this year. The Bright Lights Chard really is pretty and keeps going for months if picked regularly. πŸ˜ƒ

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    1. I find that it can get so productive that I am none too keen on chard by the time it stops producing The season continues for far too long here, since the plants are perennial in the mild climate here. They can continue to produce right through winter, and only stop producing if they bolt and bloom. Even then, they can regrow from the roots! But of course, after they are all gone, I plant more, as if I actually want more. Well, there are neighbors.

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      1. I know what you mean, but growing them as ornamental pllants for their colourful stems is an alternative for when you tire of eating them. πŸ˜‰ I cut mine back completely twice last year and they came back (to haunt me!) and I ran out of ideas of how to use it!

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    1. Even in my own garden, I prefer for neighbors to at least help select seed for varieties that I am not sure about. It is something that I am not very good at. I would select only white flowers if I could. Of course, there are not nasturtiums that are convincingly white.

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