Gardeners called them war gardens during World War I, relief gardens during the Great Depression and Victory Gardens (in the United States) between 1940 and 1945. Those who loved growing plants, like my parents and others who experienced years of turmoil, looked forward to making new gardens.
But, plant lovers faced a quandary. Crops of seed catalogs touting newer and newer plants flooded their mailboxes. The new seed ideas tugged at their green thumbs like honey, enticing bears – but would these new seeds produce as they promised?
Home gardeners before 1932 had little objective plant testing to turn to when they looked at the newest seeds. As much as they loved trying new plants, home gardeners had scant funds to waste on seeds with unproven production. Even the most dedicated plant aficionados had little reliable information on which to base their choices.
Home Gardeners Have All-America Selections
The All-America Selections (AAS) organization celebrated its 80th birthday in 2012, with a nod to Ray Hastings, who founded the All-America Selections in 1932. Today, AAS stands as the oldest international seed and plant testing organization in North America.