Decoding the Seed Packet
What All Those Gardening Terms Really Mean
-- By Jenny Sigler, SparkPeople Contributor
The back of every commercially bought seed packet provides a basic how-do guide for growing that particular plant. Compiled with information on lighting, sowing depth and more, this article will help you decode what all of those gardening terms mean.
Usually a packet will have not only the common name, but also the botanical name as well. This is helpful because one country's "squash" is another country's "pumpkin."
Picture of the Plant
This is an easy way to gauge what you can expect to grow, which is especially useful if you want to try new or exotic edibles that you may not have encountered before. It may also help you distinguish between different varieties of a single type of plant, such as pickling cucumbers and yellow cucumbers.
Typically placed on the back of the seed packet, this can be a few sentances long or take up a large portion of the packaging space. It is a summary of the plant's aesthetics, whether it's edible, and its taste. This can often contain details about how easy or difficult the plant is to grow.
Size of the Plant
The sizes given are reflective of the size of the plant at full maturity. Many are in centimeters as well as inches, and indicate the height and the spread of the plant. You'll need to know this information when planning your garden and deciding whether you have enough space available to grow this particular plant.