There’s something comforting and convenient about the feel of a gardening catalog while you sit near a window on a cold winter day and count the days until spring.
Many companies have gone “green,” putting out e-newsletters and online catalogs, which is admirable in terms of protecting the environment.
Even so, there’s still nothing like the inspiration and convenience of a print catalog with full-color photos and plant descriptions that you can keep on your work bench to use as the gardening season unfolds.
Here’s a list of must-have catalogs that you can order online. Most are free and feature just the inspiration you need to put a little spring in your step.
Plant Delights: Tony Avent’s Juniper Level Botanic Gardens in Raleigh is a source for perennials of all sorts and the catalog is known for its topical – sometimes controversial – cover cartoon. Info: plantdelights.com or 919-772-4794.
The Gardener’s Workshop: A source for cut-flower and herb seeds, gardening tools and seed-starting supplies like soil-blocking kits that allow you to plant seedlings with ease and convenience. Info: thegardenersworkshop.com or 757-877-7159.
Brent and Becky’s Bulbs: Look for spring, summer and fall bulbs in selections that give you seasonable color throughout the entire year, as well as gardening tools. Info: https://store.brentandbeckysbulbs.com or 804-693-3966.
Select Seeds: Specializes in heirloom flower and vegetable seeds, including bee beneficials like purple hyacinth bean flowering vine, as well as small plants. Info: selectseeds.com or 800-684-0395.
Camellia Forest: Chapel Hill nursery offers fall-, winter- and spring-flowering camellias, including Camellia sinensis and a recipe for using it to make homegrown green tea. Info: camforest.com or 919-968-0504.
Fairweather Gardens: Specialty, hard-to-find ferns, irises, sedums, hollies, viburnums, witch hazels, shrubs, grasses and flowering trees. Info: fairweathergardens.com or 856-451-6261.
Bluestone Perennials: Clematis, coneflowers, bee balm, geraniums, ground covers, ferns and more come in plantable coco pots that are biodegradable. You’ll love the four pre-planned cutting, butterfly, border and shade gardens. Info: bluestoneperennials.com or 800-852-5243.
The Cook’s Garden: Consider organic and heirloom vegetables you can grow from certified organic seed and plants, including lots of tomatoes for those tasty summer BLTs. Info: cooksgarden.com or 800-457-9703.
Burpee: Catalog cover features actual size Super Sauce hybrid tomato, billed as the world’s largest sauce tomato; inside is On Deck hybrid sweet corn that grows in a patio pot, as well as Solar Flare sunflower with scarlet petals. Info: burpee.com or 800-888-1447.
Tomato Growers: Every size, shape and color of tomato seed, including Mr. Stripey in yellow-orange, cherry hybrids and beefsteak and bi-colors. Info: tomatogrowers.com or 888-478-7333.
Renee’s Garden: Her online-only catalog offers a new line of organic seeds for vegetables, flowers and herbs. Info: reneesgarden.com or 888-880-7228.