Behind the scenes in Tower Hill’s greenhouse

Have you ever wondered how Tower Hill is able to sell thousands of homegrown plants at its annual Plant Sale?

It all starts in March with a well thought-out plan. Our gardeners and horticulturists sow seeds in waves throughout the spring, starting with the coolest season varieties like lettuce and Swiss chard and later peppers and tomatoes.

The seedlings grow in our greenhouse where temperatures stay warm even on cool days and where the small plants are protected from the harsh elements that can pop up throughout the spring.

Is there such a thing as too much basil? We don’t think so!

Our Plant Sale has all the staples, but what excites us most is finding new varieties to share with guests each spring. We love to encourage visitors to try new things in their own gardens.

When the plants outgrow their original seed starting spaces, it’s time to be transplanted into bigger containers.

The next step is to bring the the plants to our cold frames. These structures are dug into the ground to provide nighttime warmth and each have covers we shut in the evening. But during the day the cold frames are open so the plants can harden off, which is a process of getting the plants used to living outside in the sun, wind, and rain. By slowly making the transition, plants avoid the shock of jumping from a climate controlled green house to the extremes of New England weather.

Once hardened off, the plants will be placed in an outdoor spot where they will grow in preparation of their big day at the Plant Sale, which is on June 2, 2018.

The Tower Hill Plant Sale is an annual tradition that thousands of visitors partake in each spring. Guests know they will find plants that were carefully selected and professionally cared for from seed to Sale.