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Wintersowing in 5a... please help a noob! :P

Posted by turquoisegardenia 5a (My Page) on
Fri, Feb 18, 11 at 17:12

Hi there! I'm in 5a (Montreal) and am going to try my hand at this wintersowing thing. I will have way more seeds than I know what to do with once all my SASEs and trades come in (what kind people there are on this site), so hey, why not-- there's not much to lose.

One observation I've made, though, is that most people seem to wintersow flowers. Though I would love to have a huge flower garden, my current third-floor balcony situation forces me to be more practical. Although I will have a few flowers, I mostly focus on edibles. This year, I plan on doing toms, sweet and hot peppers, squash, a few carrots, greens (brown mustard, komatsuna, lettuce, mesclun, and hopefully kale, spinach and collards if I can get some), and herbs (dill, chives, basil, cilantro, cumin, chervil, sorrel, greek oregano, lemongrass). Now some of this stuff I figure would fail miserably in my climate if I tried to wintersow it (toms, peppers, basil, cumin, cilantro, oregano for example, are all from Mediterranean/Middle Eastern countries, so no point in bothering). Have any of you fellow 5a-ers ever had any luck wintersowing any of the rest? I thought maybe greens, carrots and certain herbs would be better adapted to the cold... but as my title suggests, I'm a noob to this, so I don't trust my own judgment ;)

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Wintersowing in 5a... please help a noob! :P

Welcome to Wintersowing
I've had great success with chives(allium schoenoprasum) & garlic chives (allium tuberosum).
Mustard greens, spinach & arugula self seed in my potager suggesting their seeds survive the winter so to me they'd be options to try.
There's a vegetable & herb list over at (link below)
wintersown dot org under seed lists. It will help you for sure.
Happy Gardening

Here is a link that might be useful: Winter Sown

RE: Wintersowing in 5a... please help a noob! :P

Thanks a lot! That link is super helpful. I was looking for some sort of guide like that but couldn't find one. Nice to speak to a fellow Quebecer :)

RE: Wintersowing in 5a... please help a noob! :P

  • Posted by kanuk Zone5 QC (My Page) on
    Sat, Feb 19, 11 at 7:39

I'm sure you'll find all that you're looking for on that site ... and more. We love our gardens here in Quebec so you'll find a few of us here sharing with others.
I skimmed over some of the veg. & herb list and can see that you'll be happy to see many of your selections are good choices for winter sowing. That will really make it easier for you to get a good start on your balcony gardening.
I sent you an email with further info you might find inspiring.

RE: Wintersowing in 5a... please help a noob! :P

I am nearby in Ottawa and have a few herbs that do well for me: sage, parsley (both Italian and curled), some cold-hardy green onions, most chives and garlic, oregano, tarragon, lettuce and some of the oriental green veggies which I sow very early in the spring. Some members mention tht dill re-seeds in their gardens, but I have never got it grow in mine. Welcome!!

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