Favorite Seed & Bulb Sources

Mary Sue Ittner msittner@mcn.org
Mon, 10 Mar 2003 22:19:20 PST
Dear All,

I'd like to second Diana's comments about sources of seed. She has 
mentioned my two favorite sources, Northwest Native Seed for native seed 
and Silverhill Seeds for seed from South Africa.
The url for the latter is: http://www.silverhillseeds.co.za/
I've had good luck with the seed from both.

I sometimes end up with treasures from seed exchanges, but am very often 
very disappointed when the plant finally blooms to find it so misnamed that 
there is no question it is wrong. I have learned to look at who is donating 
the seed and so look for people I know are interested enough in bulbs to 
figure out what they have. The Indigenous Bulb Society of South Africa 
sells left over seed after their annual meeting. I have ordered seed from 
then and have had wonderful success with it and it mostly seems to be 
correctly named.

Before the phyto requirements stopped the easy shipment of seeds I ordered 
and traded seed with Dirk Wallace in Australia which was also very viable. 
I don't know if Dirk is still selling seed.

Bulbs--I haven't been buying very much lately as I grow more and more 
things from seed. Diana Chapman from Telos Rare Bulbs has wonderful things 
you can't find elsewhere. The service is great and the information she 
includes really helpful as well. And I know Diana is really careful about 
virus and grows most things from seed. I have always thought her offer to 
send you a mystery bulb if you found the typo in her catalog very clever as 
it has always meant I read every word in her catalog. I am sure she will 
send anyone in this group a catalog who doesn't get one because they 
ordered in the past. mailto:rarebulbs@earthlink.net

Last fall I ordered some surplus bulbs from Jane McGary for the first time 
and was very pleased with what I received including some wonderful crocus. 
I have a pot of Hyacinthus italica that has been in bloom for a long time 
which is very attractive. Her prices were reasonable and the quality good. 
She will no doubt announce on our list if she has a surplus bulb list again 
in 2003 and then you can write her privately to see what she is selling.

When I was visiting in France I bought a number of things from Lauw de 
Jager http://www.bulbargence.com/ and they were of good quality and good sized.

And items Bill Dijk has shared from New Zealand with the BX and he brought 
with a phyto to California last spring were really first rate as well. All 
of the Moraeas I purchased then and held for fall planting have bloomed or 
have spikes now. Hopefully they will return in future years and get used to 
this hemisphere. I mention him even though he is probably only a resource 
for people in New Zealand.

Mary Sue

Mary Sue Ittner
California's North Coast
Wet mild winters with occasional frost
Dry mild summers

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