Submitted by orangenavy t3_1227okx in massachusetts

Does anyone know where I can find seeds of flowers and grass that are native to the area?

Edit: thanks for all the wonderful answer so far. I think I did a poor job in my question, so let me add a bit more details.

I have a small patch of grass in the front yard currently. Is there any grass / small plants type I can put seeds down that will replace the grass? For reasons I can't get into here I'm not able to remove the grass.

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askf0ransw3rs t1_jdp9a4a wrote

Lots of local libraries have seed libraries where they give the seeds (and instructions) out for free.

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SharpCookie232 t1_jdpbny8 wrote

I love that they do this. Westwood has an excellent one.

Also, OP, check your local garden club. There might even be some members who are willing to give you some seeds or plants to get you started.

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orangenavy OP t1_jdpeocp wrote

I'm close to Westwood. Will check out. You're referring to the Westwood library?

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Known-Name t1_jdpgaee wrote

Not OP but yes Westwood library has a seed section. Flowers, vegetables, etc. I got a bunch last year and plan to stop there this week for some more.

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surfratmark t1_jdp6yfg wrote

I ordered seeds from Wild Seed Project in October. Most need a cold stratification period but im sure there are some still available. Weston Nursery also has native plants available in the spring and there is lots of good info available on Native Plant Trust web site

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orangenavy OP t1_jdp8l9v wrote

Thanks. Do you know what native plants require little care? I'm hoping for something I can just spread seeds with little to no care. I am not very good at planting, and not a lot of availability to do so either.

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surfratmark t1_jdp9a6n wrote

Most natives don't require much care, this is their home environment so not much to it as long as they get the required sun. The amount of sun will dictate what seed to get. I'd say any of the asters, bee balms, golden rods, cone flowers and Joe pye weed would be easy enough.

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LadyGreyIcedTea t1_jdpacqn wrote

We didn't grow them from seed but we bought some native mint plants at Allandale Farm in Brookline in 2021 and it spread everywhere. I think we planted 3 plants and last year we had like 40.

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surfratmark t1_jdpcgwz wrote

Thats good to hear, Broad Mountain Mint is one that I am looking to plant this year.

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Hottakesincoming t1_jdqfz4u wrote

I've tried both ways and I've decided that planting actual plants is much easier, albeit much more expensive, than seeds. Most large nurseries now sell a native plant brand and some natives are widely sold so if you do research there are more options than you'd think.

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SomeDumbGamer t1_jdpfswq wrote

Stockseed farms! They mainly supply native prairie plants but they have tons of both native and naturalized wildflowers too! Seeds are really cheap too! I can get a pound of bachelors button seeds for $10

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scrummy-camel-16 t1_jdqmow0 wrote

Native plant trust/garden in the woods sells plants

I have ordered from Everwilde, they enable you to find seeds based on geographic location

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AuggieDog t1_jdpcs2k wrote

Lots of places have wildflower seeds— you can find lists from Wild Ones for instance or your local UMass Cooperative Extension.

These lists are only good if you understand your growing conditions (shade, sun, soil type), and how much work you want to do to establish and maintain them i.e. watering, weeding, thinning.

Here’s a good list of resources:

https://ag.umass.edu/resources/home-lawn-garden/fact-sheets/flowers

I’ve had great luck growing Purple Coneflower from seed (if you’re looking for something easy to both start and maintain). Sunflower is also super easy to grow and will flower in one growing season.

In general starting from seed can be tricky — it helps to have a weed-free bed and to start them in late fall so that they establish themselves early in the spring.

If you plan to direct sow them now, you should look for varieties that do not require cold stratification (periods of freezing and thawing). Also you shouldn’t expect flowering until next year (or late summer/early fall) if you plan on starting perennials. There aren’t a whole lot of plants that will do much in their first season, other than annuals.

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TheSunflowerSeeds t1_jdpctb8 wrote

In a study in more than 6,000 adults, those who reported eating sunflower seeds and other seeds at least five times a week had 32% lower levels of C-reactive protein compared to people who ate no seeds.

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gardenflamingo t1_jdqmt6y wrote

Prairie moon nursery is a popular online native seed source. You can filter by region/state and pick germination code "A" for seeds that don't require cold stratification.

Make sure to do due diligence and pick a trustworthy source if you want native plants.

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surfratmark t1_jdr5lmk wrote

To your edit:
An easy way but probably not the best is to just stop mowing it. If you currently have a weed free, chemically enhanced lawn this might take a while. If it is your average lawn that just gets mowed, you probably already have native grasses and plants there. Clover, violet, dandelion, wood sorrel and many others are commonly growing in lawns unless treated as "weeds" and sprayed.

The best way to do it would be to dig up or rototill the entire area and prep it as a flower bed. The existing ground cover would most likely out compete the seeds sprinkled in the area, so removing it is important.

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LowandSlow90 t1_jdpc1fn wrote

Check out Fedco seeds. They're a wonderful co-op company out of Maine that offers fabulous seeds and much more. I've been ordering from them for years, growing beautiful flowers, fruits and vegetables. I believe they offer a seed pack that is a mix of native wildflowers. Give them a look, happy growing!

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globalsilver t1_jdpswv1 wrote

Look for any locally owned florist, vegetable farmstand or greenhouse closest to you.

In my experience they are more than helpful to find seeds of any kind and especially ones that are beneficial to pollinating your area.

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orangenavy OP t1_jdqjjl4 wrote

Thanks. This is a great idea. I don't know of any such place around me, but will keep an eye out.

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globalsilver t1_jdt9int wrote

If there is a local farmers market in your area you can ask the farm workers at any booth. They appreciate anyone planting pollinating plants and would love to talk and help you.

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Buckwheatking67 t1_jdpa77c wrote

Homedepot has bags of native flower seeds.

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orangenavy OP t1_jdpe8py wrote

This sounds easy. Is it trust worthy?

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shyjenny t1_jdpi9ea wrote

I'm doubtful Home Despot does much QA on native plants
They sold Purple loostrife in my local area for years knowing it was invasive

And I won't buy from them knowing how the corporation predominately donates money to the Republican party
Sorry / not really to bring up society and "politics"

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