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saints de glace

Seeing the colors, the varieties and amazing selection of seed packages and seedling plants at nearby garden centers and supermarkets, who wouldn't want to start a little garden plot? Maybe you could just start with 3 pots to get the hang of it instead of planting in full ground. With Mother's Day this coming Sunday, 12 May 2024, a gift filled with a thoughful collection of seed packets, a tomato seedling, some potting soil, gardening gloves, and a garden tool would surely win you some points!

Some annuals are best seeded directly in the garden in spring whereas some can be nurtured in little starter plug pots and then transferred outdoors once the freezing temperatures have finished. Side note on this subject, known in French as Saint de Glace, here is an excerpt from the latest Know-it-all passport®:

saint de glace

As we have had some unpredictable weather in the last weeks, with one weekend reaching 27ºC then followed by freezing temperatures, one has to pay attention to these wise words from history: Avant St, Servais, point d'été. Après St. Servais, plus de gelée (Before St. Servais, no spring. After St. Servais, no more frost).

Do not start plants too soon as they may become crowded and spindly before they can be planted safely outdoors. Look for a soil that is made especially for starting seeds or baby plants if you can but it is not absolutely necessary.


Seed packages always look so beautiful suspended together and it is hard to ignore them when browsing. 

Starting plants, especially herbs and vegetables, from seeds is not always easy, so it’s important to select seeds that have a good chance of being successful depending on the amount of sun or shade they will need. Herbs and vegetables such as lettuce are good choices to start in pots but it is tempting to buy a few of the hot pepper and tomato varieties! It is also sometimes recommended to add a thin layer of sand to the bottom of the pot before soil to promote better drainage.


Your seed packet will let you know how deep to plant your seeds, and how far apart each seed should be. The instructions will also indicate the best time of year to start sowing your seeds.


If you can't wait to buy your seed packages, then get on down to your local garden center. We have a list of recommened garden centers in the latest Know-it-all passport, some open on Sundays during the planting season, but since some these photos were taken at Jumbo Brico, we'll list their addresses here:

Jumbo Brico

NOTE: On your birthday, and up to one week after the date, Jumbo is offering you an additional 15% discount on everything in your cart (some restrictions apply). Before going through the check out, simply go to the customer service desk with a form of ID to prove your birthday date.

— Bussigny
Rue de l’Industrie 68
1030 Bussigny
021 703 63 63
Monday to Thursday 8h30-19h, Friday 8h30-20h, Saturday 8h-18h.

— Chavannes-de-Bogis
3, ch. Industriel
1279 Chavannes-de-Bogis
022 960 70 20
Monday to Thursday 9h-19h, Friday 9h-21h, Saturday 9h-19h.

— Geneva/Meyrin
12, rue des Entreprises
1217 Meyrin
022 780 18 18
Monday to Wednesday 8h30-19h, Thursday 8h30-20h30, Friday 8h30-19h30, Saturday 8h-18h.

— Vevey
Av. Reller 42
1804 Corsier-sur-Vevey
021 925 88 20
Monday to Friday 8h-19h, Saturday 8h-17h.