The weather here in Washington has been hot and sunny, and our seed crops are ripening quickly in the heat. When I first started farming, I harvested the flowers so regularly that the plants never had the opportunity to set seed. It’s so exciting to see many of my long-standing favorites in a whole new way. The process of growing flowers to produce a seed crop has been so interesting, and I can’t wait to share more about the process in the future.
We have begun harvesting and cleaning seeds that will be carefully packaged in preparation for our big January seed sale. It’s so satisfying to see the fruits of our labor and to know that seed grown here on the farm will be in the hands of so many gardeners before we know it.
The team and I have been carefully planning out all of the work here on the farm over the next year in the most thoughtful and intentional way, given everything that’s happening in the world right now. Most of our amazing team have young children and are trying to figure out how to juggle their work responsibilities with childcare.
After much deliberation, we’ve decided to narrow down our shop offerings this fall so that we can provide our team the grace and flexibility needed to be able to prioritize their families. This means we will not be selling tulip and narcissus bulbs this year, but instead will be offering limited quantities of my favorite ranunculus and anemones, plus a selection of hardy annual seeds for fall sowing.
This decision was not made lightly and will undoubtedly disappoint many people, us included. There’s nothing we love more than sharing spring-flowering bulbs with you! However, this decision, while incredibly difficult, is in the best interest of our small team.
So while we won’t be selling tulips or narcissus this fall, here are some of my favorite mail-order sources for fall-planted bulbs here in the states.
Hands down my favorite source for bulbs, this family-owned company in Gloucester, Virginia, offers a great selection of fall- and spring-planted bulbs as well as a selection of perennial plants. Brent and Becky wrote a comprehensive book all about daffodils and one about tulips that are my all-time favorite books on the subject.
One of the oldest bulb producers in the country, John Scheepers has a great selection of all types of bulbs, from tulips and narcissus to hard-to-find treasures. They also have great bulb collections grouped by color.
This long-standing, family-run operation is the largest tulip producer in the Skagit Valley with over 1,000 acres in production. During the Skagit Valley Tulip Festival you can visit their beautiful 3-acre display garden. They offer a nice selection of standard and novelty varieties.
White Flower Farm is a family-owned nursery based in northwestern Connecticut. While their prices are a bit higher than those of most sources, they have a great selection of hard-to-find varieties, and their website has beautiful photos.
Planting bulbs in the fall is a gift to your future self, and there’s nothing more wonderful than being greeted by flowers in early spring.
If you have a favorite source for fall-planted bulbs please share it in the comments below. Please note: If your comment doesn’t show up right away, sit tight; we have a spam filter that requires we approve comments before they are published.