Where to buy flower seeds for sale
Have you ever grown your own flowers? Annual flower seeds are a low-cost and high-return investment for dipping your toes into a new hobby, bridging the transition from a hobby-grower to a professional grower, and/or expanding and diversifying a thriving cut flower operation. Today I’m going to share with you a bit of my years’ worth of seed-sourcing experience and highlight my favorite suppliers, as the wide world of seed sourcing can be quite daunting for a new farmer or backyard gardener.
Johnny’s Seeds – in my opinion, Johnny’s is the premier retail flower seed supplier out there, and they’ve been expanding their selection of cut flowers aggressively over the past several years to meet up with the increasing demand for unique and beautiful blooms. Their website is top-notch and full of extensive growing information, providing dozens of free that are valuable to new and seasoned growers alike. They also offer large wholesale packets for large-scale growers and are a key supplier for many flower farmers.
Floret Flowers – Floret has captured the hearts of the flower world in the past couple of years with their online seed shop full of unique and breathtaking varieties. Floret focuses on providing seeds that were previously impossible or nearly impossible varieties to source as a backyard gardener or floral enthusiast, opening up the world of specialty cut flowers to the general public. Floret’s website is full of inspiring photos of the varieties they offer, and I’m sure their selection is only going to continue to expand!
Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds – This small company is 100% committed to heirloom varieties of vegetables, herbs, and flowers and specializes in the rare, unusual, and hard-to-find!
Sunflower Selections – This Company is responsible for the breeding and availability of so many of the industry standards for professional-grade sunflowers. The Procut series, the illustrious Moulin Rouge burgundy, the newly released “Sunfill Purple” and “Sunfill Green” are all part of this California seed farm’s portfolio. I order nearly all of my sunflower seeds from these folks (they have both retail and wholesale quantities available) and have always been so pleased with their products! Plus, I love supporting these growers directly, though their seeds are available through many of the other outlets mentioned in this article.
High Mowing Organic Seeds – Find these seeds at many local garden centers, hardware stores, and/or Whole Foods stores. My family’s hardware store in NC carries their full line of vegetable, herb, and flower seeds available to retail stores, and they have an even larger retail selection online. Though they do not have tons of flowers, I’ve seen them add so many new lines over the past several seasons, and their vegetables are fantastic. HM’s commitment to certified organic seed farming is an essential piece to the sustainable agriculture movement in the United States and their customer service and product quality is top notch. When you support small businesses like High Mowing and all the companies I mention here, you are impacting lives and helping keep seed diversity alive!
Geoseed – Geo is known and respected in the flower-farming world for their affordable seeds, prompt service, and wide selection. I purchase approximately 75% of my flower seeds from Geo each season, if not more.
Johnny’s Seeds – In addition to retail, Johnny’s offers wholesale quantities and has a fantastic library of professional growing resources. They have extensive variety and cultural information available online in an easy-to-comprehend manner. They only sell varieties that they have done extensive trials and testing on at their research farm in Maine and are an especially valuable resource for northern-climate growers.
Fred C. Gloeckner & Co. – They have an extensive catalog, and while many varieties are geared toward the greenhouse and bedding plants trade, they do have a large cut flower selection. Gloeckner is my primary resource for non-seed flower sourcing – peony roots, fall-planted spring-blooming bulbs, anemones, ranunculus, dahlia tubers, etc.
Ivy Garth Seeds – They have a large selection of varieties I haven’t seen available elsewhere, and provide their catalog online divided into sections – perennials, annuals, ornamental grasses, vegetables, & herbs. They also offer a detailed online culture guide that I often reference for seed germination temperatures and other important growing details.
Sunflower Selections – this company owns and breeds the ProCut line of sunflowers, my absolute favorite series of florist-quality sunflowers, in addition to many other beauties like the burgundy, branching beauty Moulin Rouge. Their website says that “every sunflower [they offer] is the result of at least seven years of careful research and plant breeding” and I love being able to support the breeders of these gorgeous blooms by purchasing from them directly.
There are so many other great seed providers in addition to the ones I mention here, but I chose to focus on ones that I have had personal experience with and have made purchases from for my own farm and garden. I manage the seed department at my family’s 120-year-old hardware store and gardening business and source seeds for our racks from all retail sources listed above except Floret and Johnny’s. I recommend checking out your local garden center for flower varieties, and if you don’t see a large selection, ask them if they would consider expanding their offerings!
Because of our flower farming endeavors, my customer base has become exposed to so many new and intriguing flowers, and I have built up a diverse group of customers, some of whom are more inclined to purchase seeds of said flowers and grow their own, and many who buy both my cut flowers and flower seeds alike!
If you are a flower farmer, you might consider selling packets of some of your favorite easy-to-grow seeds in the springtime at your farmers market stand (say sunflowers, cosmos, & zinnias or anything that doesn’t compete with your specialty too much). Once people try their hand at growing their own blooms, they will see how difficult gardening can be and will thus value your product all the more! Few things ignite the “flower bug” more than harvesting the blooming fruits of one’s own labor, as I’m sure many of you who have tried your hand at growing flowers before can surely agree!