We started sowing indoors!

 

2014seeds

We have been in town for two months trying to find a good assortment of seeds. Shop after Shop told us that they hadn’t been selling well so they have only a limited supply. I had been so excited that the shops placed their seeds out early. When we took a closer look at the display cases, they were selling a larger assortment of flowers, spices and very few vegetables.The shop we purchased the majority of our seeds from last couple of  years, finally told us they are not selling seeds at all this year. It only took them three weeks to find that out for us from their main office.

We jumped in the car and went to the closet largest city and found a plant nursery/shop that had a good choice of seeds. When we were done it rang up at 700 kr, which is about a 100 dollars. I was flabbergasted. We live out in the country. Are vegetable/kitchen gardens that rare here? I got to thinking about it. I have only seen one other family in our immediate area that have a kitchen garden. I know a few more people in town that have small vegetable gardens as well. If I think about it, allotment gardens are more abundant in Sweden, but they are usually in larger cities. I guess we will be ordering from heirloom seed banks earlier than I had planned.

700 kr for seeds, 200 kr in planting soil, 100 kr for 5 spice plants. That is about 160 dollars. Has anyone else notice seed prices are substantially higher? I think they have gone up 40% since last year if not more. Does that mean our food prices will be rising by that much or more this year?

I read on a Swedish blog the other day that it cost 250 kr (almost 40 dollars) to raise one normal size chicken in our local stores for a small hold farmer. I believe that was just for feed. Right now they are not that expensive in the shops? We have to research that for ourselves, but we won’t be buying chickens this summer. We have a neighbor that has a large chicken coop and vegetable/kitchen garden. We are going to visit him and ask question like where he buys seeds and chicken feed. I hope we get some good tips from him.

 

KitchenTablePlants

The picture above is the corn for this year.

The picture below is cauliflower, tomatoes and bell pepper that was sown today.You can see my spices in the window sill along with lettuce and one celery plant.

 

DayOnePlanted

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Posted on April 2, 2014, in Gardening and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. It’s the same here, both with lack of seed availability and people who grow their own veg. People in the towns and cities with little garden grow stuff, normally in allotments, or through land share, which is a scheme where by people who have too big a garden allow people to plant in exchange for some of the produces, there are also a few community gardens. Between where we live and our local village which is 4k there is only one other household growing veg, yet most of the houses would be farms, the only thing they produce is cattle and sheep, no grants for growing veg!!
    Seeds are available but very limited varieties and it’s hard to find Organic seed, I always order on line from the Organic Seed Catalogue which is a UK company, we have used them for years and always get good results, we also save seed from what we have produced.
    We also produce, for our own use table birds as well as eggs, to produce a chicken for the table costs us about 8. 75 euros, slaughtering at 120 days and feeding entirely Organic feed. this costs 18.20 per 25 kg for both chick and growers feed. layers feed costs is 17.25 per 25kg.The table birds are worth doing as it costs us 16 euro to buy a oven ready Organic bird 16 euro. The egg layers are just about break even point for production costs, but we will not buy so called Organic eggs as these come from birds that are in flocks of 3000 birds, they might be fed Organic feed, but in our book 3000 birds per unit is not organic.

    • I find that so strange that so many farming family don’t have a kitchen garden any more. I guess we will have to order from catalogues as well. I have just heard about seed trains from crazygreenthumbs. I am going to research that and see if I can join one.

      I think raising your own chickens for eggs and meat is smart and should be economical. I am going to talk with our neighbor C and ask for information on how he does it and for practial information and go from there.
      Honey

  2. Yes, seems like ordering seeds through a catalogue is the way to go. Apart from the choice even with postage and packaging it should be much cheaper. At a guess I’ve spent at most £20 in seeds for this year, though if I had paid full/normal prices for them it would have been at least double that. On the other hand, the bulk of the cost was Jerusalem artichoke tubers (nearly £10).

    • I thought the price we paid for the seeds was too expensive. If the package had been larger with a larger amount of seeds,I wouldn’t have been so upset. I would really like to have a seed bank. It would make gardening cheaper. I think that would make us even more selfsufficient. I know farmers of old use to save seeds this way. I am going to try and dry seeds myself from some of the vegtables. I have done that with some of my flowers and been successful. I just gave some packet to my neighbor yesterday, when she dropped by with a gift of a flat of eggs for me. I have been reading about it on line.It seems some plants are more difficult to get seeds because they say you have to prevent cross pollination. I will take baby steps on that by collecting seed that are easy first. Then as my skill improves with time attempt the more difficult seed collection. I am in no hurry to learn.

      The difference for the price of you paid for your artichoke tubers is they are perriniels. They reproduce themselves. I call that a good investment.
      Thanks
      Honey

      I really dislike buying things online or by catalogue.

  3. A really interesting post, Honey. Running a kitchen garden is a very expensive and yes, I have noticed how the price of seeds has risen. Some of the seeds I have bought this year have been over £2 a packet. But I am lucky here in England, with many good garden centres selling huge varieties of seed nearby.
    I buy a lot of out of date seeds for a fraction of the price. The garden centres have them in buckets and there are many to choose from. I also buy from the local market where people sell stock where garden centres have gone bankrupt. Those are the cheapest and best!
    I don’t know anything about keeping chickens and am too sentimental, so could never eat them or I would be heartbroken if the fox made a visit.
    I have never saved seed either, but used to see my Grandma put little tied up brown paper bags on flower heads to catch the precious seeds.

    Karen.

    • Hi Karen,

      I think the most expensive seed packages were 36 kr which is almost 4 £ or almost 7 $. I have to travel 100 kilometers to a medium size city or 170 kilometers to a large city. They have a much larger selection of Garden Centers to choose from than where we live. We live in a very small community. We have two small privately owned nurserys/florist shop. Their prices are of course higher, because they don’t buy in volume. We also have one hardware/ garden center, which is a small franchise store, that we usually get our seed from every year. I think they are close to going out of buisness. That is why they are not selling seeds this year.

      It was cheaper for me to drive to the closets town which is 45km and purchase seed there. If I include what it cost in gas, It is just not cost affective to travel farther. I wish that they had out of date seeds sales here but they don’t. All unsold seeds are sent back to the distributor every year.

      I am lucky Hubby would be doing the chicken butchering not me. I would be feeding and caring for them though and of course cooking them.

      I didn’t know that you got the gardening bug from your grandma. Good tip on saving seed by using paperbags.
      Honey

      • I would be very happy to send you some seeds, as a gift of friendship.-Karen.

      • That is so sweet of you. I am really touched. I would love that.
        Honey

      • Great! I will get right onto it. I am trying to work out how to get your contact details. Other bloggers have emailed me, so I guess my email address can be found somehow…… I am going to the big market on Sunday and sometimes I have found real bargains there.Is there anything particular you would like? .Karen.

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