Those interested in Winter Sowing: Look Here

Plymouth, PA(Zone 5b)

I have been doing a lot of research on Winter sowing. This is a list I found on another board. I thought those here might find it useful. If anyone can add to this list please do so as I still have seeds I am unsure what box to put them in (winter sowing or spring sowing). Thanks to anyone that can assist.

Achillea filipendula
Achillea love parade
Aconitum napellus (Monkshood)
African Daisies
Agastache cana
Alaskan Wildflowers
Allium purple
Allium christophii;
Allium fistiloseum
American beautyberry
Ammi majus
Anise hyssop
Anthirrhinum Hybrid Rocket Mix (Snapdragons)
Anthirrhinum 'Jamaican Mist'
Aquilegia 'Danish Dwarf'
Aquilegia Nora Barlow
Aquilegia Scott Elliott
Aquilegia Yellow Star
Armeria Maritima (sea thrift)
Asclepias incarnata
Asclepias tuberose
Asters Perennial
Astrantias "Ruby Wedding"
Bachelors Buttons
Balloon Flower
Bell Pepper
Blackeyed Susan
Blue Lace Flower
Blue-eyed grass
Butterfly weed , white
Calendula green heart orange
Calendula kablouna
Calendula pink surprise
Canterbury Bells - Calycan
Cardinal climber
Castor bean
Catanache caerulea
Centaurea dealbata
Centaurea cyanus
Centaurea macrocephala
Centaurea Midget Mix
Centranthus ruber
Centranthus Roseus
Cephalaria Gigantea
Cerinthe Major Purpurescens
Chiogga Beets
Chrysanthemum court jester mix
Chrysanthemum 'Sheffield Pink'
Clary sage
Clematis texensis
Clematis, Sweet Autumn
Coneflower White Swan
Convolvulus ensign mix
Cornflower Polka Dot
Cornflower blue
Cornflower Perennial Bluet
Craspedia globose Goldstick
Daisy gloriosa
Daisy Black footed
Daisy Prince zulu
Daisy Shasta, dwarf 'Silver Princess'
Daisy, Shasta
Dame's Rocket
Delphinium Cardinale
Dianthus deltoids
Dianthus crimsonia
Dianthus siberian blues
Dianthus sooty
Dianthus velvet and lace
Dicentra spectablis, alba
Digitalis purpurea 'Alba'
Digitalis purpurea 'Pink Champagne' (Foxglove)
Dodecatheon Pulchellum
Dracocephalum Moldavian Dragonshead
Echinacea 'Starlight',White Swan
Echinops ritro
Echium dwarf hybrids
Echium pininana
Echium plantasineum
Echium vulgare
Erynguim planum Sea Holly
Eupatorium Maculatum
Euphorbia marginata
Forget Ne Nots
Foxgloves Yellow
Gaillardia Dazzler
Gaillardia fire wheel
Gaillardia Goblin
Gaillardia Grandiflora
Gas plant
Geum triflorum - prairie smoke
Gilla- bird's eye
Globe amaranth
Gloriosa Daisy
Green wizard
GW Annual Blend (some)
Hadspen's Blood
Hellebores, White, pink, red
Helleborus orientlis (Lenten Rose)
Hyssop, anise agastache foeniculum
Incarvillea Delavayi
Iris LA
Iris siberian
Iris spuria
Jacobs Ladder
Jasione blue light
Joystick Armeria
Kiss me over the garden gate
Lacy phacelia
Larkspur purple
Lathyrus clymenum
Lavender lady
Lemon mint
Limonium latifolium
Linaria Canon Wendt
Linaria Northern Lights
Linum Perenne
Lisianthus heidi mix
Lobelia Red Slippers
Lobelia Siphilitica
Love lies bleeding
Lunaria (Money Plant)
Lunaria var.
Lupine maroon
Lupine the pages
Lychimachia atropurpurea
Lychnis Angel Blush
Lychnis orange
Lychnis Rose Campion
Madia Elegans
Mallow Variegated
Malva Mystic Merlin
Malva Sylvestris Moravia
Malva, zebrina
Margarite ,Golden
Mexican hats
Mimulus Cardinalis
Mimulus Hybridus
Monarda bergamot
Monarda lambada
Morning glory crimson rambler
Morning glory heavenly blue
Morning glory kniola's black
Morning glory mt. fuji
Morning glory zeeland mix
Moss Rose
Mother of Thyme
Nepeta Subs
Nicandra apple of peru
Nicotiana Domino mix
Nicotiana Sylvestris
Nicotiana. 1999
Obedient plant
Orange Gem
Orange Morning Glory
Ormanetal Grass
Paper Daisies
Penstemon Huskers Red
Penstemon Palmenrii
Penstemon Ruby Rich
Phlomis russeliana
Pink Turtle Heads
Poppy Welsh
Poppy Flemish Antique
Poppy , Iceland
Poppy bolero apricot
Poppy danesberg laced
Poppy danish flag
Poppy fairy wings
Poppy oriental pizzicato
Poppy pink peony
Poppy pink ruffles
Poppy unknown orange
Potentilla Miss Wilmott
Potentilla Monarch Velvet
Prairie clove purple
Primula Florindae, Rosea
Ragged Robin
Robinson's Rose Pyrethrum
Rudbeckia maxima
Rudbeckia goldstrum
Rudbeckia hirta
Rudbeckia laciniata gold quelle
Rudbeckia wildflower
Ruellia humulis
Salvia coccinea
Salvia Purple Rain
Salvia transylvanica
Sanguisorba Officinalis Greater Burnet
Scabiosa Ochroleuca
Scabiosa stellata
Scabiosa yellow
Scabiosia prolifera
Sea lavender
Shoo fly-purple
Sidalcea Party Girl
Silene cherry blossom
Silene peach blossom
Snapdragons Gumdrop
Stachys coccinia
Standing Cypress
Sweet Rocket
Sweet Williams
Sweet alyssum
Sweet Pea
Sweet pea blue
Sweet pea indigo king
Sweet peas painted lady
Sweet william salmon shades
Sweetpea purple
Sweetpeas mixed
Tansy purple
Texas blue bonnet
Thyme English
Tricyrtus Hirta Alba
Trumpet vine
Valerian Red
Verbascum copper rose
Verbascum Phoenicum
Verbena hastata.
Verbena (annual and perennial)
Veronica red fox
Viola tricolor 'Johnny Jump Up'
Viola, 'YTT'
Yucca, red

For additional plants that have been tried in winter sowing check out the link below:


This message was edited Thursday, Oct 25th 9:32 PM

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

tamlamb, that is quite a list. It makes me wonder if we should ask Dave to put a checkbox on the plants database format for "suitable for winter sowing"....what do ya'll think?

That way, eventually you could do a search just on those plants that can be successfully sowed using this method. Thoughts, comments?

Newnan, GA(Zone 8a)

go vols, I'm going to step out on a limb here and call someone by name. Okay, two someones:) Our own Poojer has written a fabulous piece about winter sowing. And poppysue has written several long threads helping us out. I'd love it if you could twist their arms to let Dave put links to something.

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

It's up to Dave, Poojer and PoppySue, but I agree with you, tiG - there is excellent information generated by these two members that should be permanently "linked to" somehow.

Plymouth, PA(Zone 5b)

Hey Dave how about it? Can you add a box to the database for marking a plant good as winter planting? Also links to the Winter PLanting threads, so member can easily access them?

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

Hmmm, maybe it would be good to create a "Winter Sowing Primer" like we did the trading primer? Poojer, PoppySue, yoohoo - where are you guys??? Wanna write a primer? It would save ya'll writing this stuff over and over again :) I'll be glad to help anyway I can!

Mansfield, MO(Zone 6a)

Please! Pleeeeze! Do it! I can not bring myself to believe I can put moss roses out in the winter!! I am reading that right aren't I?

OK a stupid question I know but ........ What is Winter sowing? In the UK we sow in Autumn and Spring, well most of them do, I sow all year cos they ain't going to grow in the packets!

Considering your Winters are much harsher over most of the US compared to the UK I would have thought sowing in the Winter would be unviable.

Hempstead, TX(Zone 8b)

being in zone 8 i have a nice selection i grow in winter. with this primer i can have a great selection. great idea

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

Baa, you're doing it and a lot of people over here have been doing it for years, but it's become "popular." Even a few of the horticultural magazines have done teeny tiny articles on it. Mostly, I've always felt that if a plant drops its seeds, that's probably an optimum time to plant them. The seed companies over here have rather influenced most American gardeners to wait until spring. Common sense notwithstanding, any help anyone can get to do a better job of gardening gets my vote.

OOOOOOOOOO, that does it!!! Lady bug down my shirt is NOT ACCEPTABLE!!!!! I hope they hibernate soon.

Kathleen .. so are we talking Autumn sowing then?

Ahh ladybirds, I attract them by the thousands too LOL.

"down the Shore", NJ(Zone 7a)

tamlamb, thank you for sharing the results of your research; that list will be very useful to many of us. go_vols idea of putting a checklist on the database will make this information accessible to us. I like the idea of a winter-sowing primer as well. We need one here on daves, no need to give anyone more 'hits' on his site linking to poojer/trudi_d's info over there. poppysue, I am going to have to look for your threads! ozarksue, I have moss roses/portulaca coming up everywhere each year from the original plants I set out years ago. They self-seed very nicely, which indicates they are an excellent choice to winter-sow on purpose. John

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

Baa, yes indeedy - that's it.

We must both be very sweet!!

Westbrook, ME(Zone 5a)

Vols - Maybe Poojer would let you use her instructions that she has already written up. I did a lot of winter sowing last year ... for the first time. I had the best success with coke bottle greenhouses. I planted from January through March and brought them out to my back yard and literally barried them in the snow. There they sat until the warm spring weather. Not everything worked but I had more seedlings than I could possibly plant. I saves a lot of room inside - and if you don't have lights to start seedlings this is definately the way to go.

Westbrook, ME(Zone 5a)

John, - I don't think it was me that had threads on winter sowing. However I might have added 2 cents here and there. I did reccommend sowing perennials & biennials in the summer and fall for blooming plants the following year. Maybe that's what you're thinking of? Poojer was the one that really got everyone interested in winter sowing.

East Meadow, NY

The info for Winter Sowing is on the GW, if anyone would like a copy of it they may email me for the info if they cannot access the GW from their computer.

And now for the crunch:

I wrote the info and posted it on the GW and it has been a very succesful post for the GW, but especially even more so for me. Winter Sowing has been very good for my head, and my bod too, in the last two years I've gone from an 18-20-22w to a 10p. Success and exercise outdoors in the fresh air do wonders for your mental attitude. I have a release for publishing the info, but other than myself, it cannot be used or published (in any form or derivation) by anyone except myself or the GW. Any links to it will have to be for my posts and info where they are located now. If anyone "copies and pastes" the info into a post, even if done with the utmost sincerity, it becomes a big hassle and a problem that I would like to avoid. I like DG and I would not like any grief for anyone here, especially Dave.

I will include the links to the posts but not the posts themselves. I hope you all understand that I am in the process of "chapterizing" (for lack of a better word) the essay and hope to have it in a "publishable" form by early Spring. Rome cannot be built in a day, the book cannot be written instantaneously, and I've still got to have more flats germinate, grow, and my garden isn't already big enough. (I am running out of space but there's more space in my running pants where my butt was. Digging new beds is the best butt firming exercise under the sun.)

So, I am sorry, but links on the DG database are out, the primer is out, and posting the essay is out too. I would like to someday share the information here, perhaps there will be a day for that in the future, but it cannot be done right now because of the concerns I mentioned.

If anyone has any WS questions they can email me directly or leave a message on one of the two essay posts and I'll answer them there.


Here's a copy of the email I send everyone who would like the info about Winter Sowing:

Thank you very much for asking for a copy of the Winter Sowing info.
I've made an expanded version and have posted it on the Garden Web
"Growing from Seed" forum. Here's the link:

I've also posted it on the new "Garden Experiments" Forum also. Here is
the link for that location:

To save the info to your hard drive simply click on the link to open the
page, then pull down the File Menu in your browser and choose "Save As",
you can then save it to a location on your own computer.

I hope you will enjoy the method and that you'll have a lovely and
beautiful garden next year from the seeds you germinate. If you have any
questions please feel free to email me.


Trudi Davidoff

aka Poojer

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

Trudi, let me extend my best wishes on your upcoming publication - you go, girl!

One question I have, winter sowing is not necessarily a new technique, (although it is something that you have helped generate a lot of enthuiasm for, correct?) So adding a checkbox within the DG plants database to denote plants that can be successfully sown outdoors in the winter shouldn't cause any problems for you, since this is information that can be gathered from any number of sources, including (best of all) gardeners' own personal experimentation. I propose that we go ahead with adding that checkbox to the plants database, if Dave agrees.

"down the Shore", NJ(Zone 7a)

Winter sowing, or more properly, fall sowing, is hardly a new technique. The primer certainly could be published here at dave's, based on other sources and the experiences of our own members. This information, as go_vols has pointed out, is freely available, and need not be attributed to any one person. Seeds of plants suitable for fall sowing could surely be denoted as such in the database. I would be happy to assist in writing the primer, without recourse to any material already published elsewhere. John

Kearney, NE(Zone 5a)

A year or two ago I read an article on this subject in one of my gardening magazines. I believe it was written by the head propagator for the Denver Botanical Gardens. It is a method that was highly recommended and used by them

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)


I congratulate you on your gains and losses! but, as everyone here has said, fall planting is a VERY old practice. If Dave does choose to use it in a primer and does not use your words, then there is no problem. The book From Seed to Bloom has a great deal of information on fall sowing techniques and I doubt if there is a person in Europe who gardens who hasn't learned this method from their childhood. I don't mean to start a fight, and as a writer, I am quite aware of copyright laws, but you can't copyright titles or longstanding concepts and practices.


East Meadow, NY

Winter Sowing is NOT fall planting. It is done during the winter. If you start the flats too early they germinate too early. And it's the lids that make it unique. If you put a link to info in the database about what can reseed and what can't do so....but it must be without the term "winter sow" or it's derivations or any references to it.



I have a great respect for you and I wish you luck with your book, however without widdling on anyone fire here, the term Winter Sowing is not exclusive. Type it in a search engine, even Thompson and Morgan use the term. Its an Agricultural/Horticultural term which is commonly used.

While you use an excellent method with your pans there are many similar forms used all with good success. In many ways its very similar to the use of plastic bottles and other things which let in light. Now before anyone jumps an me and points out that it isn't sowing in the ground and covering with a cloche, there are methods where by the bottle is cut in half and holes made in the bottom, top is then replaced. There are several things you can use not just bottles and trays with lids. We use these methods in the UK because there are many areas of heavy clay and in the constant rain of Winter a container is a more viable option especially for such seeds which need cold to germinate.

I was confused because there are differences between our countries language and I had got hold of the idea that they were sown outside in January with no protection. If I'd thought harder, I'd have realised what a daft notion that was LOL.

Now if there is a problem with using your tray/lid method due to copyright, then I'm sure that several of us can think of a few ways we have used the same method but in a different container and cover.

East Meadow, NY


Is it wrong for me to request that the information as I posted it be used as I posted it? I don't want the compilation of information that I worked so hard for to be rewritten inaccurately. I've already pulled two rewrites off the internet because of the horrible botch jobs that were done to it.

Can I ask you a question? How long did it take you to write your reply just now?

How long do you suppose did it took me to write WS? and answer ALL those posts? I feel very passionately about it and I do make sure that the info is accurate and the essay is in complete form when posted elsewhere.

If you're not sure then ask Dave, it's his website.



I was not inferring that you should give up your project to this site, you have obviously done a great deal of work in your project on GW. Indeed since it is your work it is up to you what you want to do with it.

What I am saying is that Winter Sowing is by no means one persons idea and nor does the title belong to any site.

There really is no need to call me out on this, I am not attacking you.

I would be happy to contribute ideas to a primer for this site, I and many others here in the UK and probably in many parts of the world have been using similar methods for years. It is not a new concept, certainly to a European audience.

Its great that you have broken a mould in your area and made others look at how they do things. If you read my last paragraph again you will see that I was proposing a project which doesn't need to make any reference to your work or tread on your toes. This is not my desire.

However, this being a site for gardeners, germination ideas and experiences are going to be discussed and since the site is expanding with things such as a plant database then it appears that a general information page may or may not be useful

As you say this is Dave's site and ultimatly his decision and for what its worth I propose that not only a winter sowing guide but a general germination guide which covers terms which new gardeners may be unfamiliar with. I've long thought a glossary may be useful but I've never posted it up.

As for how long it takes me to write a post, like yourself I take a great deal of care over my words and how I present myself, here and in other parts of life.

Keep up the good work Poojer and please don't see this or my other post as an attack.

This message was edited Friday, Oct 26th 10:28 AM

Panama, NY(Zone 5a)

No one is denying that you've done a lot of work on this, but I have to be frank and tell you that it has been around for quite some time, and that it has been published by others. A short quote from From Seed to Bloom by Eileen Powell, copyright 1995:
"Sow seeds in flats, sink in the ground against a noth-facing wall, and cover with glass. Moisten soil occasionally, if necessary."

"down the Shore", NJ(Zone 7a)

Yes, Poojer, it is wrong. Surely you are not the only one of us capable of describing this ancient technique without 'botching' it. The method you describe is already in common use! You have no more exclusive claim to this technique (or name) than you would to a method of aiding germination of morning glory seeds by chipping and soaking. Your objections have been succinctly answered in the posts above, if you have read them carefully. John

Camilla, GA(Zone 8a)

I plant seeds all year long, and like Trudi, seem to have very good luck..Come January, or even February when things go fully dormant here, I think I have seeds in just about anything that will hold them. Most I don't even cover, The one's that I don't cover are slid up under my back's out in the open they are covered. I like to just scatter seeds all in my beds and let nature take it's course, but I have to be careful with seeds I don't have many of and put in container's..I have chickens, and they love fresh seeds.. I love winter sowing, and spring, autumn and,,,,LOL..

East Meadow, NY

I see and ackowledge your point of view, in different areas of the country and world stratification has been used forever. I never knew of it prior to writing the essay, and if I had the essay would never have been written. And I am glad that I didn't know if it because discovering WS on my own and putting it into words has uplifted me personally, spiritually, and physically. I am a totally changed person from who I was two years ago.

But that is not my point, my point is that I don't believe anyone else has gone into the details of compilation that I have, or written them down in all one document (at least, I've not seen it yet. Nor do they write as I feel or in the manner that I feel. They are not me.

"Sow seeds in flats, sink in the ground against a noth-facing wall, and cover with glass. Moisten soil occasionally, if necessary."

This IS a method of cold stratification, but it is NOT my essay. And it is my Essay and all it's nuances and all the little lessons from experience that get's botched and that is what I have objected to all along.

Wherever my essay gets posted I like it posted in its original form. That is all I ever need and all I ever ask so I don't know what else to say about that.

All the very different ways and means of cold stratification are posted all over the internet. I think you have misunderstood me in thinking that I want some sort of "claim" to them, or a request that you not post those. That is a little far from the center for me, and for those people who do know me, they know I would never even conceive an idea like's base.

I will retiterate that wherever the GW gives permission for my essay to be posted that it is done so in its entirety.


If anyone would like they can email me personally because maybe they might have a different and more positive perspective that I'm not seeing that would alter my feelings, I do read everybody's emails and I actually answer the non-slanderous ones ;-) So, until I feel otherwise I stand firm in my feelings in that wherever my essay is mentioned that it be posted in its entirety.

Newnan, GA(Zone 8a)

Trudi, I appreciate your response. I am a little confused though, do you think that because you posted your original essay on one web site, that it owns it? No web site has any rights to something you wrote, unless you give them that ownership. If you did, that's fine, but if someone has led you to believe that you don't have the rights to your own words, I think they would be wrong.

Hillsboro, OH(Zone 6a)

Hey Trudi,
Personally I think you should write one about your diet and weight loss. Call it 'Gardening off the pounds" or something! :) You sure`came out like a butterfly! So, what do you want to trade for your old fat clothes??? LOL Don't think I will EVER see my size nine butt again.

"down the Shore", NJ(Zone 7a)

Which now brings us back to go_vols idea that we might add our own primer to fall sowing, as well as checkboxes in the database next to suitable varieties. Our own members experiences with the fall sowing of seeds will be of great value in compiling this information. John

Spring Hill, FL(Zone 9a)

"winter sowing" as a generic term is pretty indefinite since it would indeed be impossible to sow anything in this zone 5 area say from 12/26/01 to 2/28/02 because the ground is FROZEN SOLID to a depth of 2.5 feet! On the other hand in zone 9, where I intend to be, a huge list of seeds can be sown between those same dates. Any primer should address various Dept of Agriculture zones as to what constitutes safe sowing dates for the various categories of seed I would think. You can bury seeds in the snow like poppysue but germination and location and viability must vary so much that results if any would be totally unpredictable.

This message was edited Sunday, Oct 28th 8:28 PM

Murfreesboro, TN(Zone 7a)

Kikisdad, what's under discussion isn't direct seeding (aka sowing in situ) but sowing seeds (mostly perennials, but even some annuals) in containers - typically common plastic flats with lids and air holes, and placing them outdoors where nature will take its course, with periods of cold and relative warmth providing a natural stratification process. The result is seedlings that are arguably sturdier and hardier than their indoor-sown counterparts.

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