Where to buy vegetable seeds

Winter greensToday, I’m sharing some more garden pictures, plus a handy list of suppliers of vegetable seeds, sprouting seeds, green manure seeds and herb seeds. If you are eagerly anticipating the gardening year ahead and are tempted to buy a packet or two of these tiny living things, now’s the time, especially if you’re looking for something that’s rare or unusual – many catalogues will be fresh off the print. 

Most suppliers listed have very wide ranges of other seeds and plants too, including wildflower seeds and meadow mixes, plug plants and seedlings, seed potatoes, onion sets and fruit plants.

In many cases you can order seed catalogues or buy their books, but you may prefer to browse or order online. They are mainly British companies, some better known than others, and offer seeds to UK gardeners. Some will also export if you live elsewhere and spot a treasure you can’t easily get at home. Please check the websites for details.

Chiltern Seeds
One of my favourite seed suppliers, who publish a hand-illustrated catalogue of vegetables, herbs and edible flower seeds each December, the VegBook, to complement their main seed catalogue. I’m planning a review of this soon!

Dobies of Devon
Good value range of seeds, including fashionable mini-vegetables. Useful What to Plant by Month feature online.

Accessorised vegetable garden

DT Brown
Vegetable seeds, green manures, garlic cloves and onion sets, plugs plants, etc

Edwin Tucker
Have supplied seeds since 1831. Plus garlic cloves and seed potatoes, including Salad Blue, Highland Burgundy and Organic Pink Fir Apple.

Franchi Seeds of Italy 1873
Generous packages of Italian heirloom seeds, plus Eden project seeds and WW1 seeds. I liked the images of Italy on their website – a stylish touch!

Heritage Seed Library
For supporters of Organic Gardening. Members can choose six varieties of seeds each year and help conserve heritage varieties by volunteering to become a Seed Guardian.

Prize winning basket of vegetables

Jekka’s Seeds
Organic herbs plus attractively packaged seed collections that make great gifts.

Kings has been around since 1888. You’ll find Suffolk Herbs offering organic seeds on the same site.

Laura’s Organics
Organic vegetables, sprouting seeds, green manures and herbs. Based in my home county, Lancashire

Nicky’s Nursery
Specialist suppliers of chilli seeds, plus a wide range of vegetables including oriental veg and micro greens. Another site with a planting and harvesting calendar.

Potager at Trentham Gardens

Plant World Seeds
3000 varieties of seeds including heritage vegetables and more than 100 varieties of tomatoes. Their website says they can ship inexpensively worldwide.

Real Seeds
Open-pollinated vegetable seeds selected to perform well and taste good for home gardeners. Offers unusual tubers, including yacon and oca.

Sarah Raven
Vegetables, salads and herb seeds plus edible flowers, seedlings and plant collections, onions and garlic. I love the lifestyle and garden photography on the website, which always inspires me.

Simpsons Seeds
Vegetable seeds and plants, specializing in chillies and tomatoes, which you can go and taste in September.

Onion harvest

The Organic Gardening Catalogue
Vintage vegetable seeds, sprouts, green manures, seed potatoes, onion sets and more.

W Robinson
Heritage and mammoth seeds. Another Lancashire supplier.

Finally, a longshot:

Association Kokopelli
A French, non-profit making organization offering a wide collection of organic, heritage seeds, many rare, plus a manual of variety-specific advice on saving seeds. It’s highly recommended online by others but I confess I could not find out how to buy seeds through any of their linked sites. It seems that European restrictions have affected their business, which is a pity.

This is far from an exhaustive list and I’ve tended not to list the big suppliers such as T&M, who market so actively you’re not likely to miss them. I’m a flower person at heart and should perhaps confess I have not got a very good track record of growing veggies, but luckily for me, my sweetheart is great at growing them. I took the first two pictures in his garden.

I’m very aware that this information will change over time – if you spot any corrections needed or broken links, please let me know.

Swiss chard