Planting Seeds of Love in the Cutting Garden

“The heart is like a garden: it can grow compassion or fear, resentment or love. What seeds will you plant there?”

~Jack Kornfield


As I begin to finalize plans for the veg garden, it is also time to plan for annual flowers in the garden.  I start half the flower seeds indoors that need a head start.  But the other half are directly sown in veg garden beds, containers and the small cutting bed I started a few years ago.



Of the seeds started indoors, I hope to plant pansies, violas, pre-sprouted sweet peas and snapdragons (above) soon in early containers and beds.  I am delayed yet again with our wintry cold weather that is lingering right through this week.  By the end of May, I will be planting these seedlings I have started:  marigold, coleus, alyssum, amaranthus, torenia and pre-sprouted sunflowers in the garden.



The seeds directly sown into the veg garden, once frost is past, include morning glories….I grow up trellises in the pumpkin bed…..and nasturtiums, calendula and borage in other veg beds. 



I adore nigella and try to make room among the strawberries for these beauties.



And then there are the flowers I grow specifically for vases in my small cutting garden. It has been neglected a bit in the last year, but I have put a plan together for flowers I want to grow for summer vases, like these California poppies.



I am trying to pre-sprout tall sunflowers in biodegradable pots to put at the back of the cutting bed.



Dahlias, cleome and zinnias would come next.



Followed by cosmos….



And dwarf glads (above) and Pepperbox poppies.  I hope to attend to these seeds and bulbs a bit more this year, by adding compost to the soil and covering the seeds with a row cover for the first several weeks to keep the bed warm, and the critters away.




Do you grow flowers from seed in your garden?  Do you have a cutting garden?  What are your favorite annuals?



With a few early blossoms cooperating, I decided to throw caution to the wind and cut some….especially since the freezing rain was coming.  I placed them on my grandmother’s sewing machine.  This picture of my mom and her sisters sits on their mother’s sewing machine that they used to use.



The voles have moved many of my crocus so now they now pop up as onesies.  So I decided to cut some for the vase….they plowed down many of the others growing.



You can see white, purple and striped crocus, with one precious iris reticulata and some snow drops.  I love how perfect this early spring vase is….shows how the garden is blooming right now.  Scarce blossoms, but still joyful.

I am joining Cathy@Rambling in the Garden for her wonderful In A Vase on Monday meme. The pictures shared here were created with my iPod Touch camera and two free apps, Pixlr and Prisma.

I am posting poetry, almost weekly on Sundays, on my other blog, Living From Happiness.  You can read my latest poem here.

All original content is copyrighted and the sole property of Donna Donabella @ Gardens Eye View, 2010-2018.  Any reprints or use of content or photos is by permission only.


  1. Joyce M Whitby says:

    Donna…. thanks for bringing a bit if Spring into this dreary day … winter is hanging on wirh a fury here in NY. Your blog inspires me, and though we don’t even get close to your garden, I am committed to getting things started asap.
    Happy Spring!

    • Donna says:

      My pleasure Joyce….and thank you so much for letting me know how much my blog inspires you…that means so much to me. Here’s to spring starting soon!

  2. Kathy says:

    I adore CA poppies and have a large supply of seed for this year I hope to plant in the new “riverbed.” I can’t go a year without nasturtium. Calendula and Borage self sow freely in my Potager and Love in a Mist in my wine barrel along with Morning Glories. I love growing Cardinal Climber for the hummingbirds and this year returning to an old favorite Hyacinth Bean. Your cutting garden plans sound so beautiful Donna!

    • Donna says:

      That ‘riverbed’ sounds wonderful…can’t wait to see it. And I can’t have a year without nasturtiums either! It sounds like you have plans for lots of wonderful flowers too Kathy!

  3. Indie says:

    So many gorgeous flowers! I only start a few flowers inside due to the lack of room, though I have several that self seed around the garden outside, like cosmos, nicotiana, and alyssum. This year I have started calendula inside and might start some marigolds, cosmos, and Black-eyed Susan vine. While I don’t have a cutting garden, I enjoy all the blooms in my garden!

    • Donna says:

      Sounds like you have some lovely plans for annuals Indie….I wish more would seed in my garden, although every year I find some surprises.

  4. Eliza says:

    This wintry weather is sorely trying my outlook. You were smart to harvest some blooms, a lovely combo in that pretty vase. I expect all my crocus are now ruined under this ‘wintry mix’ – argh.
    Good to envision the summer to come. I’ve started inside tulsi, four kinds of zinnias and planted my sweet peas outside on Friday. Hope springs eternal!

  5. Cathy says:

    You are certainly ready for your growing season when it finally comes, Donna – here, I don’t attempt any direct sowing even though sowing and pricking out and potting on in the greenhouse is undoubtedly more labour intensive. I feel more confident of getting good results this way. I am so pleased you managed to pick the little posy of blooms for your delectation, and it’s nice to link it to family memories too.

    • Donna says:

      I think if I had a greenhouse I would start more flowers and even veggies ahead, and do less direct sowing. Looks like we are still in for winter this week…30s and snow….just never ending but the forecast for next week is spring-like.

  6. Kris P says:

    The crocus are beautiful and that little vase is perfect for them, Donna. You’re going to have a fabulous flower garden as soon as Old Man Winter gives up his battle for domination in your part of the country. I turned my vegetable garden into a cutting garden last year and already have space problems, largely because I direct seed everything. My raised planters are currently filled by foxgloves, larkspur, sweet peas, snapdragons and Ranunculus but I need to plant my dahlias, zinnias and sunflowers soon! There may be a few evictions in the offing.

    • Donna says:

      I hope you are correct about the flower garden, but oh winter still hanging in there. Your flower garden sounds yummy with so many of my favorites.

  7. Ciar says:

    Your plans for your cutting bed are lovely and hopefully are sustaining you through your seemingly endless cold patch.
    The sun has come out here now and is warming things up, so surely it must do for you too soon.
    I planted out my sweet pea seedlings into my small cutting bed at the weekend. I also have Ladybird poppies and cornflower seedlings in there and a Gertrude Jekyll rose and like you am planning to add sunflowers at the back.

    • Donna says:

      They are indeed sustaining me as winter continues. I am glad you are warming and planting so many lovely flowers. We are supposed to warm next week when I can direct sow and start some containers.

  8. Beth @ PlantPostings says:

    Your spring vase is so very pretty. You are a pro with seed-starting, Donna! I start a few inside, I plant some outside, and others I buy as little healthy plants from my favorite local garden center. I can’t wait to get my hands in the dirt outside! The delay is so frustrating!

  9. Rose says:

    Such a sweet arrangement in your vase! These little blooms are so welcome this time of year. I’m not always successful with indoor seed starting, but I do sow quite a few seeds directly in the garden. My favorites have to be zinnias and cosmos, which always do well here.

  10. Cathy says:

    A lovely little vase Donna! Those first single blooms are so special, aren’t they. 🙂 The thought of summer flowers is a good one. I haven’t decided what to sow this year yet… maybe just lots of basil! 😉

  11. Margaret says:

    You have mentioned many of my favourites – especially calendula and zinnias. I grow California poppies every year as well and have never used them as a cut flower – must give that a go this year.

  12. Peter says:

    Lots of beautiful flowers in your future! I haven’t started anything from seed this year but will direct sew a few things soon. I love the placement of this vase full of new life on your grandmother’s sewing machine & the picture of your mom and her sisters makes this vignette perfect.

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