Food & Garden
Our Favourite Places To Buy Sustainable Seeds in the UK
As we begin to sow seeds for our Spring gardens, bearing in mind sustainability, open pollination and organic roots is extremely important to us here at REV. So here are our favorite places to buy organic seeds in the U.K. to inspire you to get growing this year!
Milli Proust Seeds
Based on Alma Proust, a small scale flower farm in West Sussex, Milli Proust grows and designs floral arrangements whilst maintaining her core ethos of sustainability. Milli stocks seeds varieties of her favourite flowers on her site…
“…they are flowers that are easy to grow, that look great in the garden, and cut well for the vase. Whether they have a unique colour, a delicious scent, or are great for drying, they’re my favourites for a reason- and they are very easy to save seed from so you can build up your own stock. Each packet has been beautifully printed on recycled paper with my colourful illustrations.”
Real Seeds have been producing seed for over twenty years now on their site in Pembrokeshire, west Wales and they pride themselves on their reputation for excellent seed quality. They are a DEFRA-registered and Soil-Association-registered seed merchant: all their seed is grown, dried and stored professionally, and gets fantastic feedback from customers. All their varieties are real, open-pollinated seed (non-hybrid), so you can save your own seed for the future, using instructions they supply.
Vital Seeds was founded in 2018, in response to the lack of availability of UK-grown organic and open-pollinated seed. Most of the seed planted in the UK is actually produced many thousands of miles away in countries with a drier climate and cheaper labour. This means that the varieties we grow are unable to adapt to our specific climatic conditions over time. It also means that we do not have control over this vital element of our food system, which Vital Seeds believe is very important. In the last 100 years we have lost 90% of the diversity in our food crops globally, mainly due to the industrialization of the food system and wide-spread use of proprietary F1 hybrid varieties. As all of Vital Seeds’s seeds are open-pollinated you can save your own seed from them year after year.
Chiltern Seeds was founded way back in 1975, when Douglas Bowden, keen gardener of things unusual, dreamed of turning his hobby into a business and with his wife, Bridget. They set up Chiltern Seeds from their sitting room in Buckinghamshire, with the main aim of selling unusual items not available elsewhere in the UK. Today, Chiltern Seeds is ran by Douglas and Bridget’s two daughters, Heather and Sally, who made the decision to relocate Chiltern Seeds back down south to the Chilterns where they took over a converted barn near Wallingford, Oxfordshire, where they can now be found.
Sarah Raven Seeds
Sarah Raven’s wide range of flower seeds collects together the best varieties for your garden and will help you to make your garden the best it can be. Growing your plants from seed can be hugely rewarding; follow their easy instructions and you won’t look back. Almost all their flowers are cut-and-come again so the more you pick, the more they flower. And most of their flower seeds are single colour, tall-stemmed forms which gives you an intensity or purity of colour hard to find in a mix. Each variety has been tried and tested, most for many years, in Sarah’s garden at Perch Hill. Sarah Raven flower seeds will give you a quick-growing, easy to look after, highly productive and beautiful garden. Most importantly all their seeds have been through rigorous germination tests and none of their seeds have been genetically modified or chemically treated.
Grace Alexander Flowers
Based on Malus Farm in Corfe, Somerset, Grace Alexander is a biodynamic flower grower and seed merchant. Grace created Gather, which is an online membership space for flower lovers and seasonal living advocates. On Gather you can purchase Grace’s seeds amongst receiving many other offerings.
“I sell my own seed exclusively to members of Gather because, as a kitchen table business producing most of my own seed, demand has always outstripped supply. However, I recently created a special gift package of seeds which is available in my public shop here for anyone to purchase as part of a gift membership to Gather.” Although Grace’s seeds can be found locally in some independent shops.
The Newt In Somerset Seeds
At The Newt In Somerset, their passionate team of farmers, gardeners, butchers, bakers, cheesemakers, chefs and cyder makers work in harmony with land and livestock to produce delicious food for the table. As part of their online store, they sell beautifully designed and packaged seeds that are also used and grown in their market garden on the estate.
Daylesford Organic Seeds
As part of a mission to reverse the industrialisation of our food and the pollution of the land that nurtures it, Daylesford Organic practise organic, sustainable farming with far fewer pesticides and herbicides on their crops. They do not use artificial growth promoters and hormones on their animals, and maintain the highest welfare standards. Luckily for us Daylesford also stock their own certified organic seeds for us to purchase and continue on their philosophy of sustainable growing.
“THERE IS LITTLE MORE SATISFYING THAN WATCHING SEEDS YOU HAVE PLANTED GROW AND FLOURISH.”
– Daylesford Organic