Monday, September 28, 2009

Preparing for the 2010 Season

After battling a wet and cloudy summer, the 2010 season is close at hand.

(We did manage to a little yardwork in between the rain drops. )

Our entire staff has been very busy getting ready. There's always lots to do - designing the catalog, stocking the shelves with fresh seeds, looking for (& buying) new garden supplies we'd think you'd love, touching base with our Retail customers...the list goes on and on.

Here are just a few behind-the-scenes shots of life here at Thompson & Morgan along with a bit of Fall cheer from our 'Mum'.

Vita Sementi seeds just waiting to be packed & shipped to Independent Garden Centers everywhere. Want to know who's selling our seeds locally? Click here to find out.

These are just a few racks of seeds that are home to packets which get sent off to Mail Order & Internet customers all over Canada and the United States.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

T&M Gardener Success Story

We received a very nice e mail from Suzanne in Oregon who wanted to tell us about her success with our Vita Sementi Tomato 'Costoluto Genovese' as well as 'Brandywine' and 'Super Marmande'

Suzanne writes ....

Last spring was my first attempt at growing tomatoes from seed. I took advantage of a free shipping offer and purchased Brandywine, Super Marmande and Constoluto Genovese. I live in an area where the soil does not warm up until late May.

Germination was very successful, and by mid-May, I had over almost 30 3-4' tall plants in my small greenhouse, most in flower, with Constoluto Genovese setting fruit. My garden is small, and I was able to give tomato plants to co-workers, relatives and friends. One friend has an ideal spot for them - on the south-facing side of a metal building that receives no shade. He has been giving friends and customers tomatoes from all three varieties. Brandywine was the last to set fruit and have ripened in the last 10 days or so. I've also been providing tomatoes to friends, co-workers and neighbors.

Though by this time of year, I am weary of watering during our dry summers, I can hardly wait until next spring to try a couple of different varieties. I experience such a thrill from growing plants from seed. It is a miracle to me to watch a small dry seed germinate and grow into a thriving, productive plant.

Congratulations on your tomato success story Suzanne. We appreciate the feedback! And we're sure your friends, co-workers and neighbors appreciated your tomato crop. We hope you are just as successful next growing season.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Drying & Preserving Herbs

This weekend I was in the garden, up to my elbows, harvesting herbs. Even with my neighbor snipping his way through the herb garden this summer, there was a pile of basil, rosemary, mint and thyme remaining.
Since you can only do so much with Pesto, here's an article about preserving herbs that provided some helpful ideas.

Friday, September 18, 2009

'Mr. Majestic' Gets Some Love & A First Place Win

Tagetes 'Mr. Majestic' received some kudos from one of our Canadian customers earlier this week we'd like to share. Who doesn't like some good news at the end of the week?

Here's how 'Mr.Majestic' is described on our website:

From T&M's own breeding program - Awarded the FLEUROSELECT QUALITY MARK.
Many gardeners have grown T&M's Marigold 'Striped Marvel' since it was introduced in 1992. It is a novel Marigold seed, ideal for cut flowers and the back of borders and bedding. We are proud to introduce ' Mr Majestic', a dwarf version of 'Striped Marvel.'

A fantastic compact bedding plant or ideal for containers around the garden. It is a welcome change from pure oranges and lemons and one which is bound to get the neighbors talking! Flowers summer. Height 30cm (12in).


Here's the e-mail we received from Dawn :

" These seeds are a real testament to TM quality. We purchased them many years ago, they were sent to us in the West Indies. Opened and resealed the packet numerous times. Last weekend, on Vancouver Island, British Columbia, won first place in our regional fall fair - flowers from plants from seeds from the original packet."

We're always grateful to have the gardening community share their stories with us. Many thanks to Dawn for contacting us. Congratulations on the first place win!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Saying Goodbye to Summer

The signs an end to another summer have sprouted up - The kids are back to school and there's Halloween candy in the stores. You may not be as busy as you once were in the garden either. Now is a great time to take stock of what areas of your garden need a little boost.
Just take the time to take a quick look. It's so beneficial to note what worked (and what didn't) while jotting a few notes down. Once seed catalog time begins you'll be sitting at the kitchen table or browsing online, pouring over all the choices thinking to yourself ' Hmm, I wish I knew where I could add this.'

Another activity to do this time of year is to take a garden tour. The Garden Conservancy offers an Open Days program where you can visit (depending on where you live) some of the most beautiful private gardens around.

There are also All-America Selections display gardens in the US & Canada to visit. Choose from over 200 AAS gardens and see many award winning varieties up close & personal. When it comes time to buy seeds, you know exactly what AAS selections you'll want.

Our friends at have this great calendar of events page where you can check to see if there are any classes, lectures, farmers markets or tours happening in your area. Speaking of farmers markets, visit to search for farmers' markets, family farms, and other sources of sustainably grown food in your area.

Finally, why not start your compost pile when leaves and yard clippings are everywhere? Don't let good compost material go to waste.

This convenient pop-up composter is easy to use. Just remove the lightweight carrying case, let it pop open and peg it to the ground. You'll be composting in minutes.