The quickest way to find new and interesting plants to grow, or to get inspiration for the year ahead, is by looking through seed catalogs. Whether mail-order or online, here’s a list of the best seed catalogs that you can flip through while waiting for the growing season to begin.
You wouldn’t know by looking at it, but this is the time of year when the most beautiful and extensive gardening takes place.
Roots grow deep and strong, and eager flowers curl over arbors and trellises. The hills are verdant, the soil is black. The tomatoes are the most brilliant ruby red (or purple, or orange, or striped pink and green) this time of year, fat and heavy on the vine. Corn grows tall, pumpkins grow fat, and watermelons ripen just in time for picnics by the lake.
Never mind that it’s all in the gardener’s imagination. These are dreams that will come true in just a few short months time. And most of them start in the pages of a seed catalog.
Do you need some inspiration for your own dream garden? Here are some of my favorite companies, offering the best seed catalogs available!
What makes these the best seed catalogs?
Firstly — there are lots of seed companies out there, and they aren’t all created equally.
A Note From Home & Harrow
When I put together this seed catalog guide, I was careful to be honest with my selections. These are just links to my favorite companies with no affiliate connections at all.
If I missed any of your favorites, please add it in the comments below and I’ll check it out and possibly add it to this list!
I like to stick to companies that offer diverse organic, heirloom, open-pollinated and non-GMO seeds, as well as hybrids. I also disagree wholeheartedly with the practice of “patenting” seeds that some corporations are implementing. Seeds, no matter their breed, are not a new invention, and farmers and gardeners should never be forbidden from saving, replanting, selling or sharing produce grown from those seeds. As such, I prefer companies that offer Open Source Seed Initiative (OSSI) varieties.
I also like to use to companies that have signed the Safe Seed Pledge, are members of the Organic Seed Growers and Trade Association (OSGTA), and have ideally also committed to not selling any seeds sourced from companies that produce GMO seeds or are affiliated with Monsanto and other GMO companies.
This isn’t an exhaustive list by any means, and there are so many more wonderful small companies out there. If you have a favorite supplier that I didn’t list here, please tell us about them in the comments section below. In the meantime, the companies linked to here share my views and offer the best high-quality seed with great germination rates — no patents or GMOs required!
Seed Companies with Printed Catalogs
- Territorial Seed Company
- Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds
- Seed Savers Exchange
- Fedco Seeds
- West Coast Seeds
- Uprising Seeds
- High Mowing Organic Seeds
- Adaptive Seeds
- Wild Garden Seed
- Johnny’s Selected Seeds
- Hudson Valley Seed Co.
- Annie’s Heirloom Seeds
- Botanical Interests
- Select Seeds & Antique Flowers
- Southern Exposure Seed Exchange
- Sow True Seeds
- Pinetree Gardens
- Strictly Medicinal Seeds
Online-only Seed Companies
Winter is not my favorite time of the year, it’s true, and I quail a little in the knowledge that we’re not even technically in winter yet. But I do love this opportunity to sit cozy by the fire and let the garden blossom unfettered and wild in my imagination.
Take heart, friends, spring will come again. And in the meantime we can immerse ourselves in the pages of the best seed catalogs of 2019!
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