How and When to Plant Summer Bulbs

As spring approaches, it’s time to head outdoors and prepare your garden for summer blooms. Flowers categorised as ‘summer bulbs’ are flowering bulbs which grow and bloom during the summer, and so they are planted at the start of spring. Summer bulbs need warm weather and warm soil; a rule of thumb to remember is if it’s time for your tomatoes to go outdoors, it is also time to plant your summer bulb.

J.Parker’s Spring 2020 Collection is available to browse and purchase online NOW! So why not take a look our selection below of some beautiful summer bulbs, and kick-start the inspiration for your summer garden.

Begonias

How to plant: Begonias planted in beds which are enriched with well rotted or leaf mould will make a fine show. They should be started in shallow boxes in light soil; the saucer like tubers should be planted very shallow with the hollow side up. As soon as any danger of frost is passed then they can be transferred to their position in the garden at least 30cm apart.

Helene Harms

These cheerful sunshine blooms will add colour all summer from June to October. A perfect addition to patio pots or containers.

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Odorata Pink Delight

Well-known for its highly fragrant flowers, the Begonia Pink Delight produces an abundance of vivid pink blooms. Flowers throughout summer until first frosts.

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 Non-Stop White

These stunning white flowers bloom continuously throughout the summer months, contrasting against their glossy dark leaves.

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Dahlias

How to plant: Dahlia tubers can be planted 10cm deep in fertile well drained soil, outdoors in spring when the frost has disappeared. They prefer to be in a sunny location and spaced at approximately 45cm apart. In areas where there is extreme cold, dig up dahlias and store in a cool peat over the winter. Apply a high potash fertiliser every few weeks in summer and dead head when necessary.

Bilbao

Bilbao is a large, zesty yellow Dinner Plate Dahlia with flowers that really shine during the summer months. Flowers June to September.

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Bishop of Leicester

Bishop of Leicester produces beautiful pink petals and a golden yellow centre. The unusual dark foliage contrasts brilliantly with the bright flower.

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Cabana Banana

Cactus Dahlias produce pointed petals which turn backwards to create this stunning tubular effect. The Cabana Banana has a gorgeous creamy yellow flower with a subtle blend of pink.

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Lilies

How to plant: each lily bulb should be surrounded with a little sharp sand both under and above the bulb to keep slugs away and to ward off excessive wetness. As most liliums are stem rooting we strongly recommend you plant at 15cm deep. They give a much better display when planted in clumps of 3, 6 or 12 bulbs (45cm apart). Planting time is October through to April.

Foxtrot

This delicate pale pink Dwarf Asiatic Lily is compact, but produces masses of flowers on very sturdy stems. Flowering from June to August, they make a great summer border flower.

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Yellow County

Our Yellow County Asiatic Lily produces lovely lively yellow flowers, with a beautiful scent. Asiatic hybrid lilies are the easiest to grow and amongst the first to bloom.

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White Heaven

The pure white trumpet shape of this Longiflorum Lily is a delicate addition to any summer garden, and make for wonderful cut flower displays. Bloom from July to September.

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Gladioli

How to plant: plant gladioli corms about 10-15cm deep and about 10-15cm apart, in fertile/well drained soil. When planting in a heavy soil, place some sand underneath each corm to help with drainage. At Parkers we recommend planting Gladioli in groups at monthly intervals, starting early spring, to extend the flowering season for a display which lasts all summer long.

Adrenaline

Our Gladioli Adrenaline are a dazzling blend of pale pink, white, and purple stamens. They make a lovely fresh feature in any summer garden.

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Fergie

Fergie is a Butterfly Gladioli that produces tangy lime green flowers with a dramatic contrasting red in its throat. Like all Gladioli they are great for attracting bees and butterflies.

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Nanus Impressive

These Gladioli are true to their name, with amazing dark pink markings upon pale pink petals. The unique pattern certainly attracts the eye and flower from May until July.

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Our new Spring 2020 range is now available online. Get ahead and begin shopping for your Summer Garden now!

Alternatively, you can request a copy of our Spring 2020 Catalogue here.

Must-Have Flowers for 2020

Get Ahead: Plan your Summer Bulb Displays Now

With the new year approaching we can look forward to warmer weather and new growth appearing in our gardens, and now is the perfect time to be thinking of your summer display. Summer-flowering bulbs add an injection of colour to any garden and make for eye-catching borders and displays. Whilst often planted out in spring, many bulbs are suited to being planted as early as February. Be one step ahead and take inspiration from our selection below of Must-Have Flowers for 2020!

Summer Flower Top-Picks:

Lilies

Lilies add a touch of the exotic to the garden, and their large, brightly coloured heads are bound to attract the eye. These flowers are a striking addition to pots and borders and provide a beautiful scent. Planting time is December to April.

Lily Mona Lisa

This Dwarf Oriental Lily is a must for fronts of garden borders, or perfect in a patio pot or container. With a wonderful fragrance, these lilies would also make a lovely cut flower arrangement.

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Lily Red Twin

Our Double Flowering Asiatic Lily produces an abundance of vibrant deep red-orange flowers, and is sure to liven up any display or border.

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Lily Butter Pixie

The bright zesty petals of this Dwarf Asiatic Lily contrast splendidly with its glossy dark leaves, and is a refreshing addition to front of border displays.

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Begonia

Begonias are extremely popular for their versatility and reliability. From hanging baskets and window boxes to borders and pots, these colourful favourites are a  centerpiece in the garden. Planting time is from February onwards.

Begonia Richard GaLLE

Begonia Multiflora Richard Galle produces clusters of apricot-orange flowers with hints of yellow. They have a fantastic flowering period from June right through to October.

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Begonia Double Pink

Our Begonia Double Pink has spectacularly large bright pink blooms which can reach a diameter of 15cm. The tubers can be lifted, stored, and replanted the following year making them great value.

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Begonia Fancy Frills Yellow 

Begonia Fancy Frills is a sunshine yellow Fimbriata Begonia with bright ruffled petals. This flower is sure to bring sun to any garden.

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Gladioli

Gladioli are a classic flower which have added excitement to summer displays for generations. Available in an array of bright and bold colours, they are often referred to as the ‘sword lily’ for their blade-shaped foliage. Planting time is early March to May.

Gladioli Video

The Gladioli Video yields elegant lavender-pink petals from tall flower spikes, reaching a mature height of 90cm. Perfect for adding height to borders.

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Gladioli Cha Cha

Our Gladioli Cha Cha has beautiful butter yellow flowers which are sure to brighten up any border or summer display.

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Gladioli Espresso

The Gladioli Espresso produces striking velvety-red flowers with contrasting white stamens. This large, vibrant flower will bring excitement to any garden this summer.

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Eucomis

Eucomis descend from South Africa and have an unusual pineapple shape. Their long-lasting flowers and attractive foliage are an exotic feature point of borders, pots and flowerbeds. Planting time is from February, if into pots and containers.

Eucomis Sparkling Rosy

The Eucomis Sparkling Rosy gives deep maroon flowers in summer and follows with delicate pale pink star-shaped flowers, nestled between glossy green foliage.

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Eucomis Bicolour

This Eucomis Bicolour most lives up to the name of ‘pineapple lily, as it’s flowers bear a striking resemblance to the fruit. It’s petals are pale green an edged with maroon.

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Eucomis Autmnalis Alba

Our Eucomis Autumnalis Alba produces white flower spikes with a bright green tuft, atop broad, wavy edged leaves.

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Bulb Planting: A Guide

The general rule for planting bulbs is to dig deeper than the obvious. The usual guide is two to three times the depth of the bulb itself, however you will do less harm by planting too deep than too shallow. The other general rule is that bulbs need good drainage. The best way to achieve this is to mix grit into the general area or container of planting.

Many summer bulbs are ideal for growing in patio containers, especially tender species. These can then be lifted in winter and stored.

Step by Step:

Planting in borders:

  • Dig a hole wide and deep enough for your bulbs. Most bulbs require planting in a hole two to three times their depth.
  • Place the bulbs in the hole with their shoot facing upwards. Space them at least twice the bulb’s own width apart.
  • Replace the soil and gently firm. Avoid treading on the soil as this can damage the bulbs.

Planting in containers:

  • Dig a hole three times the bub depth, and plant the bulbs one width apart.
  • Water bulbs once after planting then regularly when in active growth. Reduce watering once the leaves die down through the dormant season.
  • If you bring pots of hardy bulbs indoors for flowering, put them in a sheltered spot outside as soon as flowering is over.

Looking for more information on planting our bulbs? Below you can find a selection of videos from our resident plant expert Jeff Turner explaining how best to plant your Summer Bulbs.

How to Plant Eucomis (Pineapple Lily): Summer Garden Guide
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Garden Trends for 2020

If you’ve ever found yourself at a loss for what to plant, weed, cut back or grow, these gardening trends could be the solution you’ve been waiting for.

Pretty Pastels for the Garden

To make a garden– a beautiful garden! You must choose garden colour schemes smartly. On a deeper level, colours can evoke certain emotions in us. Bright colours can make us feel more energetic and vibrant. Cool colours can make us feel calm, content, tired or melancholy and pastel colours can make us feel relaxed, refreshed and peaceful. In a garden space intended for peace, quiet and relaxation, pastels are the perfect garden colour scheme this summer.

Using pastels in the garden can create a space where we can unwind after a hard day and feel refreshed. A pastel garden can be placed almost anywhere in the yard. Pastel colored flowers look beautiful in bright sunlight, but also stand out in shade gardens and can brighten up especially dark areas.

Blues

Hibiscus Blue Chiffon

This award winning Hibiscus Syriacus has cool pale blue flowers, arranged like layers of ruffled chiffon. The centres are subtly marked with flashes of star-like burgundy-purple veins. A fabulous deciduous shrub which holds the RHS Award of Garden Merit, its quality’s guaranteed. A fine stand- alone specimen, or reliable addition to the shrub border, it will also make a great informal hedge or screen. It is a great choice for attracting butterflies to your garden.

Polemonium viscosum Blue Whirl

This beautiful clump forming Jacob’s ladder that produces clusters of small lavender blue flowers on shorter stems with fern like foliage. This compact perennial is perfect for patio pots or rockeries for creating a burst of cool colour.

Iris Sibirica Dear Delight

The Siberian Iris is a hardy perennial Iris which produces graceful flowers from May to July in an unusual tone of powder blue with white shading.

Pinks

Lily Elodie

This pale, baby pink Asiatic Lily is an excellent choice for bedding with very sturdy stems and upright flowers that will add plenty of elegant, pastel colour to your garden in the summer. For a lovely soft pastel display plant alongside creamy pink roses such as Joie de Vivre or our pink and white Dahlia Mix. These can be cut for a delicate and romantic bouquet.

Gladioli Adrenaline

Gladioli Adrenaline are a stunning blend of pale pink and white, they are sure to add glamour to your summer garden. We recommend planting Gladioli in groups at monthly intervals, starting early spring, to extend the flowering season for a showcase that lasts all summer long.

Lavender Rosea

A twist on the traditional lilac evergreen Lavender varieties, Rosea produces beautiful pale pink flower heads as well as the instantly recognizable Lavender fragrance.  They are ideal for planting in rows as illustrated or in pots around the patio and garden.

Yellows

Double Hollyhocks Yellow

Hollyhocks, otherwise known as Alcea, are a stable of many gardeners and synonymous with cottage garden displays. This beautiful Double Yellow variety produces stunning flowers in a sunny yellow shade. The flowers are perfect for attracting bees, butterflies and other nectar loving insects into your garden.

Dahlia Boom Boom Yellow

Unique pale yellow blooms that look amazing in the summer border. These Pompom Dahlias produce fabulous double spherical blooms which are sure to add a new dimension of shape and texture to any garden. Each flower head is made up of layers of silky, inwardly curved petals creating a perfectly formed sphere. Tall sturdy stems not only provide excellent support; but also provide the Dahlia with its iconic bobbing habit in the breeze – an uplifting and calming sight, especially in a hot sunny garden.

Rose Peace

In 1976, Rose Peace was voted the first ever ‘world’s favourite rose’ by the Rose Hall of Fame, and it isn’t difficult to see why. This exquisite variety of Hybrid Tea Rose produces elaborate, slightly frilled double blooms of creamy yellow, flushed at the edges with delicate pale pink. The Peace Tea Rose also emits a mild but delightfully sweet fragrance, as with other Hybrid Tea varieties.

Purples

Syringa meyeri Palibin

An upright deciduous shrub which produces dense clusters of sweetly fragrant, light pink and white panicles over attractive heart shaped foliage from late spring into early summer. When in bloom, the gorgeous flowers will bring butterflies to your garden.

Agapanthus Melbourne

A stunning new bi-colour addition to the Agapanthus range, with purple buds that open to reveal white flowers with a lilac purple stripe through each petal. Known as the African lily, these are drought tolerant and like well-drained soil and plenty of sunlight. They flower throughout August and September, boast masses of strappy foliage and tall 1m stems making these the ideal addition to the back of the border.

Petunia Tumbelina Priscilla

Tumbelina Petunia produce large unique double blooms in abundance during the summer months. The numerous flowers and its long trailing habit (up to 60-80cm) make it perfect for hanging baskets. Flowering from June through to October the fragrant flowers can create a wonderful display whether planted on their own or with other trailing varieties or colours. Priscilla is a lilac- purple variety with heavily veined petals.

ENJOY GARDENING THIS SPRING!

8 Flowers for Mother’s Day

Mother’s day is this weekend and giving flowers has long been a tradition on this holiday.  Giving flowers is a universal gesture for all cultures, societies and ages. They enrich our lives with their variety of colours, shapes and scents. 

Origin

Your seemingly simple gesture of sending mum floral wishes on the second Sunday in May has a rich history behind it!

In 17th century England, the fourth Sunday of Lent was celebrated as Mothering Sunday, where people attended a prayer service in honour of the Virgin Mary, followed by giving their own mothers gifts and flowers. The idea caught global attention in American in 1908, when Anna Marie Jarvis, held a church memorial for her peace-activist mother, Ann Reeves Jarvis, and distributed white carnations, her mother’s favourite flowers. Over the next few years, Anna campaigned for a day to celebrate mothers. Her efforts bore fruit in 1914 when President Woodrow Wilson declared the second Sunday in May as Mother’s Day.

On Mother’s Day, flowers are the perfect gift to show your Mum just how much she means to you, but instead of the usual cut flowers, why not give her flowers that she can treasure in the garden for years to come. Here’s a look at some of the symbolism behind certain flowers to help you find the one best suited to gift to the wonderful woman that brought you in to this world.

Roses have been historically linked to mythological and religious related maternal figures across both ancient and modern times. During the time of the pharaohs of Ancient Egypt, roses were attributed and considered sacred to the goddess Isis, the mother of Horus the tutelary deity of the Egyptian pantheon. Choosing this flower is never the wrong choice, especially when you find the perfect colour.

Rose miniature Collection –

Within our dwarf Rose Miniature Collection are the varieties Coralin (pink), Pour Toi (white), Lavender Dream, Yellow Doll (yellow) and aptly named Mothers Day (red). This mix of varieties creates the perfect balance between adoring symbolic meaning and visual beauty. Loose rooted plants supplied.

 

 

In Australia, the traditional Mother’s day flower gifted is the Chrysanthemum, not only because the flower has the word “mum” in it but also because they are also associated with friendship and support from one’s family. Their different coloured bloom symbolise different meanings. Pink Chrysanthemums stand for honest love, red Chrysanthemums mean motherly love and gratitude and white Chrysanthemums stand for loyalty and honesty.

ChrYSANTHEMUM MID SPRAY COLLECTION

 

This collection of Chrysanthemums (or Garden Mums), produce masses of beautiful colour in pots or in the border. As an added bonus, they also make excellent cut flowers as they are long-lasting and have glorious rich colour. UK-grown 3cm jumbo plug plants supplied.

 

 

Lilies have gathered a multitude of meanings over time, which differ depending on their colour, shape and variety. Amiability, purity, femininity, unity and transience; it represents all of them. So with these cheerful and loving meanings in mind, here is our top pick for adding cheer to your mother’s garden this summer.

Lily Happy Memories

Bring joy this summer to pots with Lily Happy Memories. These bright and beautiful, yellow star-shaped blooms with blushed red edges are a stunning option for adding some extra sunshine to your summer gardens. This dwarf Asiatic variety is perfect for versatile planting, whether it is patio pots, beds or borders. 12/14cm bulbs supplied.

Lily Perfect Joy

What flower could be more perfect for your mothers summer garden than Lily Perfect Joy? This stunning dwarf growing Asiatic Lily produces vibrant pink blooms with white centers that would be ideal for brightening up patio containers, pots or for the front of the border. 14/16 cm bulbs supplied.

As one of the most widely bred flowering shrubs, there are now over 10,000 unique and recognized varieties of Azalea. The Azalea is renowned as being a Chinese symbol for womanhood, and the Azalea flower is also celebrated annually by cultures all over the world for its beauty and association with love. Yellow Azaleas are primarily focused on friendship and more so family relationships, making them a perfect gift for a mother who has a patio or a terrace she’d like to brighten up with a bold bloom.

Azalea Anneke

This highly fragrant Azalea blooming with large, lemon yellow flowers is truly a sight to behold on a sunny spring day, where the yellow flowers seem to glow in the sunlight. A perfect present to cheer up a gloomy spot in your mothers garden or on a patio in a container. Supplied in 13cm pots.

Similar to Azaleas, Day Lilies are an Asian emblem for mothers. The Day Lily is famous for its beautiful appearance and symbolic association with motherhood and Mother’s Day. Because they come in a variety of bright colours, including vivid oranges and yellows, you can find the perfect Day Lily best suited for your own mother.

Hemerocallis Mixed (Day lilies)

A fantastic gift to make the perfect addition to any rockery of border in the summer garden. The flowers of Hemerocallis produce spectacular vibrant colour with their trumpet-like blooms. These hardy perennials are the perfect long-lasting present for your mother this holiday. First grade loose roots supplied.

 

The soft blue colour of these beautiful spring flowers have come to represent everlasting love , gratitude and constancy; so why not show your mother some gratitude this holiday by gifting her some beautiful spring flowers for the garden.

Bluebells in the green

The original and much loved English Bluebell is perfect for naturalising underneath trees; a spot where other plants struggle. These stunning spring flowers are seen in gardens, parks and natural woodland during April/May so why not treat your mother with these lovely little flowers this holiday and give the gift of a lovely, country feel to her spring garden.

 

If your mother prefers plants over fresh-cut bouquets, the long lasting Camellia plant is a wonderful option. Camellia plants are native to China, and come in a variety of rich and vivid colours and give off a beautiful, light and delicate fragrance. Camellias are believed to represent longevity and gratitude; making them a perfect way to say thank you to your mum this Mother’s Day.

Camellia Chameleon

This marvelous evergreen shrub presents beautiful soft pinky-white double blooms with dark red markings. A great low maintenance shrub for the border, hedging or even for large patio containers to bring that well-needed pop of colour in the spring garden. Supplied as 20cm grown bush plant in 9cm pots.

 

 

Valentines in the Garden

St. Valentine’s Day, popularly known as Valentine’s Day, is celebrated as the lovers day every year all over the world on February 14. The celebration of this day is thought to have originated from a Roman festival called ‘Lupercalia’, which celebrated the start of their springtime. Later on, the festival changed into a Christian celebration where they decided to use it to remember St Valentine too, and gradually, St Valentine’s name started to be used by people to express their feelings to those they loved.

Valentine’s is a time where people share their affection with gifts, such as chocolates, cards and flowers (traditionally red roses). Sure, roses are the flower of love, but they’re not the only flower that has romantic symbolism. You can show your valentine how much you really care with a bundle of beautiful romantic themed flowers, as many varieties from the traditional Rose, to Dianthus and Dahlias.

So, in honour of the date, here are 14 of our favourite love themed flowers to add that Valentines feeling to your garden all year long.

1. Hemerocallis Cherry Valentine

This beautiful soft pink petalled flower has a red centre and is one of our loveliest, large flowering plants from our Day Lily range. Flowering through June to September, Hemerocallis Cherry Valentine is guaranteed to bring romance to your garden all through the summer months. First grade loose roots supplied.

2. Dahlia My Love

The Dahlia is one of the most beautiful flowers in the world. Dahlia My Love is a beautiful pure white Cactus Dahlia that will add a delicate beauty to any summer garden display. Dahlias are known for being a symbol of commitment and grace, making them the perfect loving addition to your garden. Top grade tubers supplied.

3. Dianthus Scent First Romance

Fill your summer gardens with romance. Our Dianthus ‘Scent First’ Romance is a wonderfully fragrant plant producing delicate pink flowers, which blend in to a dark pink in the centre. 3cm diameter jumbo plug plants supplied.

4. Dicentra Valentine

Is your summer garden in need of some love? The Dicentra Valentine‘s heart shaped pendant flowers make a distinct and eye catching addition to patio pots and borders. Blooming with deep red tones on fantastic burgundy stems, these flowers are guaranteed to make you fall in love with your garden this summer. First grade loose roots supplied.

5. Hebe Wild Romance

A compact evergreen shrub; Hebe Wild Romance boasts an abundance of cream edged, dark green leaves which fade in to a deep pink/maroon in the winter, and then lighten in the spring to a luminous hue of bright pink. This colour evolving plant is bound to enchant in your summer gardens. 9cm pot grown plants supplied.

6. Rose For Your Eyes Only

Would this be Valentine’s if we didn’t include Roses? The most popular flower gifted for Valentines as this flower has long been a symbol for love and passion. This colourful floribunda rose produces expansive blushed orange/pink blooms that will flower all through the summer. An added bonus of Rose For Your Eyes Only is that their flowers emit a delicate, sweet aroma to add a special charm to your patios and paths this summer. Top quality 2 year old bare rooted plant supplied.

7. Hydrangea hovaria Love You Kiss

This affectionate plant is a unique lace cap variety of Hydrangea. Hydrangeas are known by some to represent anything that’s sincerely heartfelt, and alongside geraniums are gifted as a 4th wedding anniversary flower. The near white and red margin blooms of Hydrangea hovaria Love You Kiss are the perfect showstopping addition to your garden this summer. 14cm pot plant supplied.

8. Rose Lover’s Meeting

The ancient Greeks and Romans associated Roses with Aphrodite and Venus, the goddesses of love, and have been used for hundreds of years to convey the message of love. Each colour of rose can convey different meanings. The orange Rose represents passion and desire. A beautiful summer time bloom, our Rose Lover’s Meeting is bound to captivate with its striking twist on the traditional Hybrid Tea Rose shape with their pointed outer petals of exotic Indian Orange to add a touch of glamour to your summer garden. Top quality 2 year old bare rooted plant supplied.

9. Gladioli Adrenaline

Symbolizing strength and moral integrity, Gladioli also represent infatuation, with a bouquet conveying to a recipient that they pierce the giver’s heart with passion and known as a 40th wedding anniversary flower. Blooming a stunning blend of pale pink and white flowers, our Gladioli Adrenaline is bound to enchant all summer long. 12/14cm corms supplied.

10. Dianthus Scent First Passion

With its scientific name, Dianthus roughly translates to “flower of love” or “flower of the gods”, this flower is one that has been revered for centuries. Known for their spicy fragrance, compact habit and long season of bloom, Dianthus First Scent Passion is a striking variety with amazing, deep rich red flowers, ideal for bringing the passion back in to your summer borders, patio pots or containers. 3cm diameter jumbo plug plants supplied.

11. Hydrangea Together Collection

 The beautiful Hydrangea is known to be a symbol of deeper understanding between two people, that doesn’t have to be of a romantic kind. This connection can be between friends and family members but it can also apply to romantic couples as well. This exciting pairing in our Hydrangea Together Collection produces masses of magical pink and blue blooms make the perfect pairing in summer pots and containers. Supplied in 15cm pots.

12. Lily Casa Blanca

Lily Casa blanca, which shares its name with one of the greatest romantic movies of all time (Casablanca), is one of the finest oriental hybrids with large pure white blooms and brownish-orange anthers. Lilies are known as the 30th wedding anniversary flower as they symbolise humility and devotion. Enjoy this flower in the garden or be captivated by this oriental lily’s spicy fragrance indoors as part of a spectacular cut flower display. 14/16cm bulbs supplied.

13. Anemone The Bride

Add a touch of elegance to your gardens with these stunning traditional white Anemone, Anemone The Bride. These beautiful cup-shaped flowers bloom through April and May, perfect for pots, borders and containers. In Victorian times, people used this flower to represent a forsaken love of any kind in their intricate Language of Flowers, and in modern times this flower is used in bouquets for special occasions such as marriages (which would link with this flowers name) or the birth of a baby. 5/6cm bulbs supplied.

14. Eremurus Romance

Often known as a symbol of endurance, the dramatic soaring habit of Eremurus Romance is guaranteed to take your breath away with their giant, salmon pink flowers, which provide a real treat in the summer. Top Size Bulbs supplied.

 

Happy Valentine’s Day!

 

Lilies: Varieties & Planting Guide

Lilies are one of the truly great garden plants for their flower forms, diversity, extended season of bloom, graceful stature, and reliable disposition. Lilium/Lilies are ideal for large, showy displays and many are fragrant varieties, and will naturalise each year for continued pleasure. Keep reading to learn more about our different lily varieties and advice on how to plant them.

Asiatic Lilies

These lilies are very cold hardy and often the earliest bloomers. They are usually 3 to 4 feet tall and produce unscented flowers in almost every colour imaginable. Asiatic lilies are an excellent choice for borders or rockeries as they produce very strong stems and are available in several exciting colour combinations, these little garden beauties provide the earliest lily blooms of the year by appearing in June-July each year. Asiatic Lily bulbs produce sturdy and colourful flowers that make cut flowers. Supplied as top sized Lilium bulbs.

Asiatic lilies come in a variation of tall, dwarf, double and bi-colour varieties.

One of our favourite tall varieties is the stunning Lily Yellow County. This Asiatic lily produces beautiful yellow flowers and a lovely scent, which stand upon tall, strong stems and an added bonus of this plant is that they are usually pest free.

A favoured dwarf variety of ours is the Lily Foxtrot. A beautiful pale pink, Dwarf Asiatic lily. Ideal for growing in groups at the front of the border or in pots scattered around the patio.

A gorgeous Double Asiatic variety in our Lily collection is the Lily Red Twin. A stunning double flowering Asiatic Lily, it has deep orange-red flowers. It has a slight fragrance and is ideal for patio pots and containers. They grow to a height of 100-110cm and make wonderful cut flowers for indoor arrangements as they stand on strong sturdy stems.

Oriental Lilies

These amazing Oriental Lilies can grow to 5 feet high, bloom in late summer, and have a strong, enchanting fragrance, flowering in summer (August-September). The colour and markings of Oriental Lilies are very unusual and unique, but still with an abundance of flowers per bulb. Fragrant Oriental Lily bulbs can be planted in late autumn through to spring.

The stunning giant flowers that are a staple feature of this plant are available in double and dwarf varieties.

Our top pick for the Double Oriental Lilies is the Lily Lotus Beauty. Lotus Beauty is from our new range of double flowering oriental lilies that produces large flowers that resemble a lotus in appearance. The ruffled white flowers are speckled with burgundy spots and flower from July throughout August.

One of our favourite dwarf varieties is the Lily Gold Band. This oriental lily is an excellent choice for adding beauty to your summer borders with their gorgeous fragrant flowers and eye catching white and gold banded petals.

OT Lilies

Fragrant giant Goliath Lilies are a cross between Giant Oriental Lilies and Giant Trumpet Lilies.  These Interspecific crosses between Oriental and Trumpet lilies have produced lily bulbs that easily weather late Midwestern frosts without bud kill but have the sweet fragrance and shape of Oriental lilies. They have large flowers with thick petals that open wide, are extremely fragrant, and tend to last a long time. These beautiful Lilies can be incorporated into the back of your garden borders where they can act as a wonderful backdrop for your display.

One of our top picks for Giant Oriental Lilies is Lily Debby. A stunning red and orange oriental trumpet lily variety that grows to roughly 2m tall and produces up to 30 giant flowers with a diameter of roughly 20cm; a perfect addition to borders and large pots for summer.

Trumpet Lilies

Our popular Trumpet Lily bulbs produce large scented, huge trumpet shaped blossoms on very sturdy stems, and these lilies can grow up to 5 feet high. Trumpet Lilies like the same suggests exhibit large trumpet shaped flowers, often with a combination and blend of colours. Fragrant and easy to grow. Flowering early summer from June onwards. Trumpet Lilies are supplied as top size bulbs.

One of our favourite Trumpet Lilies is Lily Anastasia. A new hybrid of oriental and trumpet lilies which reach heights of 2.5m with up to forty 20cm diameter flowers per bulb. Large pale pink flowers with a deep stripe of magenta at the centre of each petal and dappling at the throat giving the lily a bruised, blushing effect.

Other Species, Tiger and Unusual Lilies

We have a selection of unusual yet beautiful Lilies in some breath-taking colours that are simply hard to ignore. This range of summer flowering Lilies flower all summer long, offering wonderful sights and fragrance. You can choose from Tiger Lily bulbs like our vibrant Lily Tiger Babies, which produce colourful, speckled brown blooms. The name Tiger refers to the spots inside the petals. Tiger Babies will produce delightful orange flowers, smothered in small spots that we come to expect from Tiger varieties.

Martagon Lilies are a species that varies very little in shape and form, but colours range from dark maroon to mauve and white, with different spotting on the petals, depending on where they’re growing. This was one of the first lilies to be grown in British gardens: Gerard described it in 1596. One of our top picks in this variety is the Lily Martagon Arabian Knight; a striking plant with a mix of gold, red and purple hues, which makes a fantastic choice for cut flowers or as a focal point in the summer garden.

Planting Guide

Though lilies look like they’d be fussy plants, they are actually very easy to grow. All of our Lilies are supplied as bulbs, ready to plant on arrival. Lilies are best planted from October up until April/May. Lilies like a lot of sun but not direct sunlight. Therefore, you should place the flowerpot in partial shade. The soil in the plant pots should be loose and permeable. Ensure that the holes in which the lily bulbs are placed are twice as deep as the diameter of the bulb.

Looking for help on planting specific lily varieties? Here are some of our video planting guides to help give you more knowledge on lily planting and how you get the best results out of your Lilies for summer.

Make sure you know which plants are toxic for animals, so be sure to keep out your lily plants out of contact with your animals to avoid your dog or cat from harm! 

Asiatic Lilies

Giant Goliath Lilies

Ground Cover Oriental Lilies

Or click here to view our collection of Lily planting tutorials on our website here: https://www.jparkers.co.uk/videos/lilies

Aftercare

After planting, they require little care. But you should not forget to water them. However, always avoid watering too much. Depending on the variety, the lily flowers themselves grow 60 to 140 cm tall. Lily varieties which grow tall are unsuitable for pots. For pot plants, you should choose lily varieties which do not grow taller than 60 70 cm. Popular, small tub varieties include Mona Lisa or Cordelia lilies. The flowering period of lilies is from June onwards. Always cut off withered petals immediately, so that no seeds form which would cost the plant unnecessary energy.

Click here to view our full lily range.

Halloween In the Garden

It’s that spooky time of the year again! Why go out and buy cauldrons, candles and pumpkins, when nature provides such bizarre and beautiful creations? To celebrate Halloween, we’ve conjured up our 12 creepiest, darkest varieties guaranteed to give your gardens a haunted makeover, along with individual facts and superstitions.

1. Fritillaria Meleagris (Snakeshead)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The snakes head Fritillaria is a popular variety due to their unusual drooping pendants, flowering in the spring. This spellbinding plant displays a mixture of white and purple bell shaped flowers.

Fact: The nodding, pink-and-purple-checkered flowers of the Snake’s-head Fritillary are said to resemble a snake, hence the name!

2. Iris pumila ‘Hokus Pokus’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Iris pumila ‘Hokus Pokus’ is a truly magical variety producing velvety petals of deep lilac and rust atop robust, fleshy stems. These exquisitely mystical blooms are guaranteed to add a touch of intrigue to your borders.

Fact: Iris take their name from the Greek word for a rainbow, which is also the name for the Greek goddess of the rainbow, Iris.

Superstition: Iris symbolize eloquence. Purple iris are symbolic of wisdom and compliments. Blue iris symbolize faith and hope. Yellow iris symbolize passion while white iris symbolize purity.

3. Tulip Black Parrot

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tulip Black Parrot is a mysterious and elegant variety, with large flared heads draped in rich, velvety maroon-black petals. Once the flower matures and opens, their serrated appearance of the petals edges become symbolic of a parrot’s plumage.

Fact: These tulips were developed from mutations of certain varieties of late-flowering and Triumph tulips!

Superstition: Wear Tulips for prosperity and protection.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tricyrtis ‘Dark Beauty’ adds an exotic edge to any borders with their strikingly unique bruised purple/blue spotted petals with a dusky white accent, and their tentacle-like tepals bursting from the center with their yellow and white stamens and purple anthers.

Fact: Known in England as Toad Lilies, this wonderful perennial is native to eastern Asia and the Himalayas. A wonderfully weird introduction to the garden.

5. Hemerocallis ‘Whoopy’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This dark and mysterious day lily is a popular perennial flowering garden plant, producing a velvety purple edge surrounding a dark black core and green throat.

Fact: The genus name is derived from Greek, meaning beauty and day, referring to the fact that each pretty bloom lasts only one day.

Superstition: Wearing lilies and poppies was thought to lighten people’s distress, causing the wearer to forget all their troubles.

6. Athyrium niponicum ‘Ursula’s Red’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fronds are a soft grayish-green with an overlay of silvery hues accented by contrasting dark maroon midribs. Silvering is best for several weeks in the spring, with fronds becoming greener as hot temperatures arrive. The attractive foliage and shape of this fern provide colour, contrast and texture.

Fact: Genus name comes from Greek athyros meaning doorless in reference to the slowly opening hinged indusia (spore covers)

7. Sedum Spurium ‘Dragons Blood’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Also known as ‘Caucasian stonecrop’ or ‘Dragons blood’ this creeping perennial bursts to life with blood red flowers from June through to August. The large simple shaped leaves create a glossy evergreen that are thick, flattened, rounded, succulent and toothed or lobed near the tips.

Fact: In autumn, ‘Dragon’s Blood’ earns its name as the leaves turn from greenish-red to dramatic deep red!

8. Tulip ‘Kingsblood’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Dark cherry red edged scarlet. Tulip Kingsblood is a striking tall, strong tulip that will bring a hit of colour to the late spring garden. Mix with dark maroons and oranges for an eye-catching combination or planted on it’s own for a bold statement.

Fact: The meaning of tulips is generally perfect love . Like many flowers, different colors of tulips also often carry their own significance. Red tulips are most strongly associated with true love.

Superstition: In Persia, Tulips are used as a ward against evil.

9. Dicentra Spectabilis ‘Bleeding Heart’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Bleeding Heart is both bold and dramatic which makes a fabulous border plant producing fern-like foliage and arching sprays of heart-shaped deep Pink and White flowers.

Fact: The Royal Horticultural Society has given this plant the Award of Garden Merit for its reliable performance, stability of colour and form and good resistance to pests and diseases.

10. Rose Black Baccara

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Add some dark glamour to your summer border with Rose Black Baccara, a striking fragrant variety of Hybrid Tea rose with petals of deepest maroon which fade to luxurious red as the plant matures. The Black Rose Bush produces large, velvety blooms and glossy foliage from its tall, statuesque stems, making it favourite cut flower of florists.

Fact: According to the Language of Flowers or floriography in the 19th Century, a black rose implies hatred, death, and despair. It can also signify rebirth or farewell for good, in certain situations.

Superstition: Rose petals falling unexpectedly without any cause is a negative omen, potentially portending death.

11. Fatsia japonica ‘Spiders Web’

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A bushy evergreen shrub with palmately lobed leaves, dappled with white, making it look as though it is covered in a ‘spiders web’. In autumn it produces clusters of white flowers that give way to black berries. Fruits persist on the prominent stalks for several weeks.

Fact: These evergreens are happiest in light shade, although it will still thrive where it is verging on the gloomy.

12. Tulip Perfect Partner Collection

Tulip ‘Havran’ is a truly beautiful, silk-satin almost black tulip with two to three flowers to a stem, providing that elusive darkness of colour for your patios, pots and borders. Pictured along side ‘Grand Perfection’, which flames blood red on a soft yellow background. As they mature, the yellow fades and turns creamy white.

Fact: In magical traditions, tulips appear in spells and rituals aimed at love, joy, safety, success and meaningful dreams. You can carry tulips as a charm that attracts prosperity.

Superstition: There is a superstition in Holland that Pixies live in tulip beds.

 

Happy Halloween!

August Plant of the Month – Oriental and OT Lilies

Oriental and OT Lilies

For a large, showy display you can’t go wrong with a beautiful Lily and this month we’re focusing on the Oriental and Oriental Trumpet (OT) Lilies. Native to Japan, these highly fragrant beauties are often called stargazers as their flowers tend to be outward and upward facing, as if they are looking up.

Oriental Lilies

Lily Fields of Gold

With their unusual and unique colour and markings Oriental Lilies are truly exquisite specimens, producing an abundance of flowers per bulb. Hardy and easy to grow, they will reach heights of two to six feet tall, excellent additions to a beds or borders and they can even be grown in pots. Oriental lilies will bloom late in the summer season, July – September.

OT Lilies

Lily Anastasia

OT lilies are a cross between Oriental and Trumpet varieties producing very tall plants, up to 2.5m mature height, perfect for the back of you borders. These beautiful Lilies can be incorporated into the back of your garden borders where they can tower over other bulbs and plants and act as a wonderful backdrop for your display. They will reach their full height by their third year and will naturalise if left undisturbed.

Planting

POTM August Oriental & OT Lilies

Plant at least 15cm/6in deep. Liliums prefer fertile, well drained soils, they’re not keen on lime in the soil. Surround each bulb with a little sharp sand under and above to keep off slugs and excessive wet. They give a much better display when planted in clumps of 3, 6 or 12 bulbs, 45cm apart. They appreciate the shelter of low growing shrubs or other plants near their roots. Planting time is from October to April/May. You can also plant lilies in pots. As they can get quite tall use a large pot that will fully accommodate the roots and you may also need to stake the plants for a bit of extra support. Stake at the time of planting to avoid damaging the bulbs.

How-to Video Tutorials

Oriental Lilies

Giant Goliath Lilies

Worse pest: The Red Lily Beatle. The adult bugs will eat away the foliage and flowers. Look out for orange-red eggs or black larvae under the leaves or late for full size (8mm) bright red adult Beatles. You can protect your lilies by spraying them or by hand you can remove and crush them but a large infestation could be very time consuming as you need to check daily!

Lilium Romantics collection
Lilium Romantics collection – These fabulous dwarf lilies are ideal for growing in pots or at the front of a border – perfect for smaller gardens that would be overpowered by the taller varieties.

Click HERE to view our full range of Lilies!