Question #3: why?

Today is a simple question, perfect for a Friday post when my brain is not up to the task of using too many words: "why?"

As in "why is it so difficult to notice seeds in my potting mix?". I reuse potting mix all the time, and well, I get surprise seedlings in there quite regularly.


It's the chipmunks. They love to bury little clutches of sunflower or safflower seeds in my pots and in the ground. Usually this results in a compact forest of seedlings, all crammed together like the girls' magical garden in My Neighbor Totoro.

At the end of the season though, the seeds don't have a chance to germinate. If I dump that pot into my mix recycling barrel, I'll end up distributing those seeds into the pots of new plants -- like my "firesticks" and "gollum" divisions.

You'd think that I would have seen these seeds, as they're relatively large, but I don't. So why do I miss them, until I see them popping up unexpectedly?

I don't really need an answer, but I do wonder: does this happen to others, or is it just me?

I actually enjoy this, as seedlings are one of my favorite things about gardening, regardless of where they're growing. When I start seeds indoors I always use fresh seed-starting mix so this isn't an issue then.


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outlawgardener  – (January 23, 2015 at 5:44 PM)  

It's always fun to find those little surprises planted by the chipmunks! It happens to everyone who recycles potting soil, I think.

danger garden  – (January 23, 2015 at 11:50 PM)  

Yep, it happens to me. Since there's no harm I kind of enjoy the surprise.

Mark and Gaz  – (January 24, 2015 at 2:46 AM)  

Happens to us too. Recycling gravel mulch brings in seedling surprises too.

Marie~  – (January 25, 2015 at 1:45 PM)  

Oh, good, I'm not alone.

I'll add another why. Why do I let these interlopers continue to grow? If one of them looks interesting, I find myself waiting to see how it develops. Doesn't always work out well, but I can't seem to help myself.

Alan  – (January 26, 2015 at 11:30 AM)  

Glad I'm not alone! At least I find the acorns before they germinate. :)

I should probably post a followup "why": why do the best volunteers always grow in the worst places?

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