Thursday, June 24, 2021

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Garden Corner: Ordering online plants and seeds

Earlier this year many people across the United States receive unsolicited packages of seeds from China. You may ask “what is the harm”? California is the largest agricultural producing area in the world and we need to protect it from potential devastation from foreign insects and disease. Also, the seeds may have been all weeds seeds and yes there were some weed seeds in the packages.

You do not need to order plants and seeds from the huge famous online retailer. There are thousands of seed and plant companies located in the United States. If the retailer is outside of California, check to see if they can ship to California. Remember, we are the largest agricultural producing state in the world and we need to protect it.

Did you know that Colusa County is a huge seed producing county? Yes, some of the seeds you purchase in the store and online are from here!

So, how can you tell if the online retailer is reputable? First, read all the information on their website. Look for detailed descriptions of the plants. Research how they are shipped, as in, bare root or potted plants. Will this plant survive in our area? Does it need a lot of water? Can it become invasive? Read their reviews.

Ask friends and family where they purchase seeds and plants? Do they recommend the online retailer? Social media garden forums are another place to ask questions.

Instead of purchasing online, go to your local store and purchase local. There are a lot of advantages of shopping local. Local stores carry plants that do well in our area. They have people who can answer your questions. Shopping local keeps your dollar in your community. If you don’t like shopping in the big box stores, shop the small local garden centers. Their employees have been trained to help you! Small local stores usually carry a larger variety of plants than the big box stores.

For information on how to purchase quality plants, go to; cecolusa.ucanr.edu

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