Since the "Great Recession", a lot more people have started vegetable gardening. Lowe's has been a big supplier of seeds and plants to novice vegetable gardeners or those people who only grow vegetables in the summer. (I don't want to sound like I'm an expert or above those people in any way) I was impressed in the last couple of years when I saw onion sets there in the spring. I felt like they were broadening their customers' horizons. This spring I saw it get even broader - Lowe's had a couple of different products that were like gardens in a box. One had a half dozen potatoes, onion sets, asparagus crowns, strawberry plants and something else. They had a larger version that included a couple of varieties of potatoes, as well as other plants. On a later trip, I saw similar, but more specialized products - one had three or for different types of potatoes, one had garlic, leeks, shallots and onions. It was very interesting, and it was timed right as far as when to plant them goes.
I started thinking of the different type of vegetables you can grow and in conversations with people, I realize that a lot of people don't know when you can grow different types of plants. People are surprised to hear that I was growing vegetables this past winter - our lettuce was planted in November and we made a salad from it today. This lack of knowledge and the vegetable seeds available at Lowe's made me think. I was browsing seeds, looking for watermelon and pole beans, when I saw onion and broccoli seeds alongside tomato and squash seeds. I started wondering how many people would try to plant vegetables at the wrong time. Wouldn't it be a good idea, and a way for Lowe's to reach out to the community, if they had a few signs - local vegetable planting guides prepared by master gardeners from the Clemson Extension?
This is just a thought I had when I was at Lowe's the other day and thought I would share it. Happy gardening!