Here are some great gardening newsletters for your winter reading list

I get way too many garden-related emails. I must be on almost every single list. Among those are a number of newsletters. During the course of a year, lots of these pop up in my email. I usually read and then delete, but often there is something worth keeping so I just copy and store it in a word processing file.

For example, I started getting a newsletter from High Mowing Organic Seeds a while back. This one caught my eye because I may have spent a summer with a relative of the founder when I was a kid. However, it kept my attention because it depicts a lifestyle many of us support: building a greener, more just and community-supported world, one seed at a time. Everything they write about is organic and they have a great catalog, too.

[Related: It’s time to seed your ideas for this year’s garden]

Then there is the newsletter from an organization called the National Gardening Association ( This group bills itself as the largest social network for gardeners. They issue a free newsletter, full of useful articles on — duh! — gardening. From orchids to fuchsia care, these are often “print out” keepers or get copied and put into my files. The group maintains a huge plant database full of anything you might want on a given plant. It is also a good way for picking up gardening trends.

What about young gardeners? Well, has a monthly newsletter designed for teachers and parents. It has lesson plans, growing guides and associated how-to stuff you can use with your children. Get them young!

My friends and award-winning garden writers, The Savvy Gardeners, have a popular website full of great stuff, including cold climate gardening tips — but not always applicable here. If you like what you see, you can order their newsletter. These folks are great garden writers.

Next, BBC puts out a weekly newsletter, Gardener’s World. Obviously this one is designed for English gardeners, but it is full of great information even an Alaskan might use. There are plenty of times when our climate is very similar. And, if you are a fan of the royals … just saying.

My old buddy, Renee of Renee’s Garden, writes a monthly newsletter. Sometimes it is about something she sells, other times something about the nursery industry. They are always interesting articles and often extremely useful.

Texan gardener Neil Sperry sends out a weekly newsletter every single Thursday, so Texan gardeners will know what to do over the weekend. Growing things is very different here, but as Neil says, the newsletter is “free and always will be” so what have you to lose? Again, it may be for Texans, but gardeners often suffer from the same problems no matter where their soil is, and Neil has good, organic solutions.

Gardening Australia is a great website with all things Australia. Their newsletter is free and full of strange and interesting stuff, but then they probably would think the same of our plants and customs. Warning: you will want to go and visit Australian gardens.

How about Kansas State University’s newsletter? It is a weekly newsletter simply full of all manner of stuff related to horticulture, and I mean full. You might find a great article on growing tomatoes along with some serious turf research. Fortunately, it is free and you can discard easily.

Finally, Garden Gate Magazine publishes a weekly newsletter. There are articles about sponsored stuff, but these can be helpful, too. There are simply information articles as well, however. For example, they had a list of online garden catalogs which you might find useful.

And, of course, there is this column, which is really simply a weekly newsletter. It may not always be applicable, but I hope it is useful nonetheless! I wonder if people Outside read it?

Jeff’s Alaska garden calendar

Alaska Botanical Garden: Join! And make it a habit to check out the website every week.

Pelargoniums: Trim any you keep growing if they need shaping. They should start to flower now.

Forcing bulbs: Time to bring them out into light. Water if necessary.