planting advice needed please

Sundance, WY(Zone 3b)

As a newbie, and just starting to develop my flower beds, would like to add some coneflowers, etc. Have seeds for purple coneflowers, and painted daisies, and some other things, but wondered what the possibilities of getting them going would be if I just put seeds out now? I am trying to save some seeds for winter sowing inside, just in case, but don't have a ton of seed. Should I start some inside now and try to get them in the ground before winter sets in, or just put out seeds now and wait for spring? Don't have the funds available to buy plants, so this is the next best thing for me now. Any advice from you experts would be great. Thanks!

(Clint) Medina, TN(Zone 7b)

It's very late in the season to plant seeds in your zone. Winter sowing is the way to go. You'll have so many you can give some away.

Sundance, WY(Zone 3b)

Thanks, echi, I will winter sow then. I wasn't sure, and hate to waste seeds if they have a better chance waiting. Do you cold store your seeds? I'm guessing start them about January? How long do they take to germinate and grow to a decent size to move outside? I usually wait to move anything out until after Mother's Day, cuz it seems we always have a late hard frost. Don't have a green house, so everything goes in windows!

(Clint) Medina, TN(Zone 7b)

If you have a really good grow light you can sow these in January indoors and grow them until Spring. I store my seeds in the fridge for at least 2 months before sowing. I use a 400 W metal halide grow light.

The winter sowing forum discusses the kind of winter sowing I meant though. You sow them in 2 liter coke bottles or milk jugs and put them outside all winter. They will germinate and grow when it's time. The milk jug, etc. acts as a mini greenhouse. They will grow so well and get a head start. After the danger of frost, you plant them out. There is a seed strain that will bloom 100% the first year called "Prairie Splendor." Warning: Winter sowing is addictive. LOL.

http://davesgarden.com/community/forums/f/coldsow/all/

Sundance, WY(Zone 3b)

SWEET! Thanks for the link. Never tried that, but will definately do that now. Thanks! And I don't have to buy a grow light, AND, I can still use the kitchen table for eating! Bonus! My seeds are in the fridge now, so needed to know I was doing the right things by them. Thanks! I think I'm already addicted, as I went yard saling with DM today, collected seeds from people's yards that were having sales. Spent almost 1 hour in a couple's yard looking at all their plants. And they actually invited me back in about 3 weeks to collect more seeds! Didn't buy anything but plants! But what a fun sickness to have, and I am learning so much, hopefully so I can share knowledge and plants, seeds, etc. with others someday. Being able to help someone else, don't get much better than that!

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