With bulb planting season on the horizon, it’s perfect time to start planning your spring displays, and what better than beautiful, bold blooming Crocus flowers? As one of the well-loved staples of spring, Crocus are one of the first flowers to appear in spring. From bold and rich purples, lilacs, cheerful yellows, to striking blends and patterns, Crocus have every colour you need to create an eye-catching garden display.
Scroll down to view our favourite bestsellers, a run down of the different varieties on offer and for planting tips and tricks for bulb planting season.
In the dull days of late winter/early spring when there is little in flower, these cheerful little blooms represent a sign of the beginning of spring. Easy to grow and will multiply year after year, these small-but-mighty plants will bring a much-needed burst of colour after a long winter.
Named after the Monarch Butterfly for their enchanting orange and black colour combination, these flowers are certain to bring warmth to the garden during the colder months. Perfect for planting in large groups or pots.
This award-winning Crocus displays fragrant and luminous soft blue flowers with a bronzed yellowy base. Reaching a mature height of just 6cm, this variety is versatile enough to be planted in borders, around shrubs or in rockeries.
The name truly speaks for itself. Blooming with white tips and deep purple petals, which then open to a lovely soft mauve inside throughout the season, these little beauties will make a big impact in the garden.
With similar habits to the Winter/Spring Crocus , the difference with these Crocus is the huge blooms that they boast, which spread up to 10cm. Growing to a mature height of 15cm, Large Flowering Crocus create a truly striking effect when planted together, making them a must-have for the border.
The bright yellow flowers of ‘Yellow Mammoth’ will bring the first bit of warmth to the new year. They will bloom in profusion when planted as edging, where they will naturalise and produce showstopping flowers for years of enjoyment.
A gorgeous, deep purple Crocus. As one of the best early-flowering plants of spring, the rich colour of ‘Grand Maitre’ will add a blast of seasonal colour. The perfect low-maintenance bloom for naturalising in clumps through the border.
A stylish Crocus with a unique look. These vivid purple and white striped flowers will create a real talking point in the garden. An ideal partner for low borders, pots or containers and will multiply each year.
As the summer blooms start to fade, nothing adds more joy to the garden than the beautiful colours of autumn flowering Crocus. Growing to a mature height of 10cm, these delightful gems will sparkle with colour in rockeries, borders, or even under shrubs and trees.
An RHS Garden Merit Award winning Crocus. The stunning lilac-pink petals surround a warm yellow centre that will add a soft touch of beauty to the autumn garden. Plant en masse or in drifts for the best impact.
Celebrated for more than 2000 years, Crocus sativus has been grown for it’s expensive red ribbons since the Tudor times. Their vibrant, fragrant purple blooms are delightful and you can even grow your own Saffron at home.
A mixture of pretty cup-shaped flowers in a myriad of stunning colours, from shades of lilac, deep purples and whites. Create a sparkling mixture of autumn joy by planting this mixture in beds, borders or containers.
Why not fill your home this winter with the sweet smell of beautiful Hyacinth flowers? As one of the most popular indoor flowering bulbs on the market, these beautiful star-shaped blooms are well-loved by gardeners for adding a burst of colour and fragrance to the home, even as early as Christmas. Through this guide, we will provide an easy step-by-step instructions (including video tutorial) on how to grow these specially prepared indoor-flowering Hyacinths.
What are Prepared Hyacinths?
Our Prepared Hyacinths are treated in a special way through a cooling process to trick them to believe that winter has been and gone and it is time to grow. Through this process, this makes these Hyacinths perfect for early forcing and indoor flowering. They can add beautiful blooms to the home as early as late November/Early December.
Planting time: September-October
Bulb Size: 16/17cm
Flowering time: Late November to March
Add crocks to the bottom of a pot or container.
Plant in fibre.
Plant the bulbs (pointed end up) at approx. 10cm deep.
Add more fibre, up to the neck of the bulbs.
Press the soil down firmly.
Place your pot in a cool, dark cupboard for 6-8 weeks.
Water when required, do not allow them to dry out.
Once shoots have established, bring the pot into warm daylight.
Click here to view our video tutorial on Indoor Hyacinth planting.
Our Prepared ‘Delft Blue’ will fill your home with beautiful blooms and an intoxicating fragrance. Showcasing tightly packed, porcelain blue, star-shaped blooms, these sweetly-scented floral spikes bring joy on any dull winter day.
The glistening, pure white blooms of Hyacinth ‘Aiolos’will brighten the home this winter. With densely packed clusters of highly fragrant flowers, this variety is perfect for creating an elegant and scented table centre for special occasions, or can be used to create a beautiful cut flower bouquet.
Bring an abundance of fragrant and colourful blooms into the home this winter with this fantastic collection of Hyacinths. This vibrant selection includes five each of Delft Blue, Aiolos (white), City of Haarlem (yellow), Woodstock (purple), Jan Bos (red), and Fondant (pink).
With their heady, sweet perfume and assorted rainbow of colours, Hyacinths are an extremely popular choice for brightening up the spring garden. For outdoor planting, we have a marvelous range of Bedding and Top-SizeHyacinths. To help you decide which options are the best fit for your spring garden displays, we have created this guide with the benefits and planting recommendations for both Bedding and Top-Size Hyacinths.
Our bedding Hyacinths are a magnificent compact option for the spring garden. They are ideal for planting in groups in flowers beds and borders for a cluster of bold and beautiful colour. Growing to a mature height of approx. 25cm, their shorter growing habit is that they are less likely to become battered by the wind, and the planting options are endless. Beds, borders, containers or window boxes, the wonderful fragrance and vibrant colours of our Bedding Hyacinths are guaranteed to brighten up your spring garden.
Planting time: Autumn (September to December)
Position: Full/Partial Sun
Flowering time: March-April
Plant bulbs pointed end up at approx. 10cm deep and 10-12 cm apart.
Plant in well-drained soil (mix in some compost for peak performance).
Ideal for spring borders and containers.
Once planted, cover with soil and firm down lightly.
Protect from frosts in Winter.
Leave undisturbed after flowering for years of spring colour.
Click the video below for a full planting tutorial.
Add the beautiful warm tones of autumn to your garden with this beautiful mixture of orange, yellow and purple Hyacinth blooms. These fantastic hardy spring flowers are great for filling your spring beds and borders with stylish colour and sweet fragrance.
The same beautiful colours and fragrance as a normal Hyacinth but double the blooms! The fluffy whorls of colourful double-flowers are the perfect eye-catching Hyacinth plants for creating sweet-smelling, vibrant summer bedding.
Is there anything better than being greeted at your front door by beautiful tall, sweet-smelling pots of Hyacinths? Top-Size Hyacinths are supplied as giant 17/18cm bulbs. Their enormous flower heads are perfect for planting outdoors in patio pots and containers to create a dramatic showcase of colour. They are ideal spring garden flowers as they produce amazing large blooms that are not too heavy to need support.
Planting time: Autumn (September to December)
Position: Full/Partial Sun
Flowering time: March-April
Plant bulb with the pointed end facing upwards.
Plant at least 10cm deep and approx. 10-12cm apart.
For garden planting (beds, borders), plant in well-drained soil.
For container planting, use a soil-based compost (e.g. John Innes No.2).
Once planted, cover with soil and firm down lightly.
Click the video below for a full planting tutorial.
With deep, rich purple flowers, Hyacinth ‘Miss Saigon’ bring a cheerful sight to the spring garden. This RHS award-winning Hyacinth produces dense floral spikes with starry, violet florets. Plant near a doorway, path or on the patio, where you can enjoy its beautiful perfume daily.
The extremely fragrant, award-winning ‘Delft Blue’ features soft blue, densely spiked florets that will add some stunning colour to the spring garden. For best visual impact, plant in groups in patio pots, window boxes, or even in the garden border.
Knowing your soil type can be crucial to planning out the planting in your garden. The soil provides your plants with nutrients, water and air that they need for healthy growth and development, but depending on the plot of ground, that can determine what plants, shrubs or trees can grow their successfully.
3 Step System to Test Your Soil
Dig a hole 6 to 10 inches deep in the soil.
Separate an intact section about the size of a soup can and break it apart with your fingers.
Determine whether the soil is cloddy, powdery or granular (ideally your soil should be made up of different sized crumbs that hold their shape under slight pressure).
Known as heavy soil (sticky when wet, rock hard when dry).
Feels smooth (not gritty) between the fingers.
Drains slowly after rain.
Takes a long time to warm up in spring.
Heavy to dig and cultivate.
Usually rich in plant nutrients.The following plants are well-adapted to clay soils:
This shrub is an underrated evergreen shrub for clay soil. The opening of its flowers announce the end of winter and its white flowers (pink in bud) provide a pretty backdrop for a border in early spring. Dense, compact growth make this a useful plant for screening off a view and creating a feeling of enclosure in the garden.
A sweetly scented honeysuckle is a true summer treat and this species of honeysuckle will grow well on clay soil. A scented climber is always a memorable plant, the perfume easy to access, especially if you grow it by your front door. The variety ‘Serontina’ has flowers that display a vivid deep red colouring.
This evergreen perennial produces spires of pink or red flowers in spring. The leaves (the ‘elephant’s ears’) are tinged with red in winter. A good plant for ground cover, it looks at its best planted in a block because the flowers have more impact in big numbers. A very tough plant for clay soil and tolerant of partial shade too.
Add Organic Matter (compost, aged manure) – this helps improve drainage, lighten heavy soil and adds nutrients. Before planting in spring add the organic matter to the soil with a 2-3 inch layer.
Build Raised Beds – As clay soil holds water, raised beds can improve drainage by encouraging water to run off.
Mulch Beds over Winter – Mulch with organic matter during the growing season and winter to help protect the soil from compaction and minimize weed growth.
Sandy soil is the largest particle in soil and does not hold nutrients well.
High proportion of sand and little clay.
Drains quickly after rain or watering.
Easy to work and cultivate.
Warm up quicker in spring than clay soils.
Low in nutrients – very acidic.
The following plants are well-adapted to sandy soils:
There are an incredible diversity of Sedums available. They are succulents, so by nature they are adapted to dry, sandy soil. Most are ground covers that make great rock garden plants. There is also a taller variety called Autumn Joy that is a good choice for its extremely late bloom.
Giant Alliums will perform well year after year in sandy soil with little care, making them a great choice for a semi-naturalized meadow planting. Alliums are an easy to grow, very distinctive late spring and early summer flowering bulb, being very showy when planted in beds, borders or rock gardens.
One of Britain’s most beautiful and popular summer flowering shrubs. Buddleia (Butterfly Bush) is an excellent choice for sandy soils, since they can adapt to most soil types. These upright deciduous shrubs are a wildlife haven. Their tubular, fragrant flowers are a superb way of attracting butterflies and bees into the garden.
Prepare planting sites with moisture-retentive, well-rotted organic matter (farm manure, compost or leaf mould).
When planting in spring, incorporate a slow-release fertilizer.
Water thoroughly and regularly during dry periods.
Ideal soil for gardening.
Mainly organic matter.
Very fertile and hold moisture well.
The following plants are well-adapted to peaty soils:
A fragrant and effective and colourful mixture of summer flowering Heathers offer an increasing superb display every year. This beautiful and colourful ground cover not only adds beauty to the garden but can help cut down on the weeding too.
Nothing is more beautiful than an Azalea shrub in spring bloom and can be grown in nearly any garden. Azalea Tunis is a highly fragrant deciduous variety which has gigantic red flowers boasting long, decorative stamens. The blazing red, showy flowers are truly a sight to behold on a sunny spring day.
Shrubs such as Witch Hazel do particularly well when planted in peaty soils. Our exotic collection of three Chinese Witch Hazel is the perfect way to breathe some life and colour back into the winter garden. These deciduous, winter flowering shrubs produce clusters of sweetly scented, crinkled flowers in a range of fiery shades.
Blend peat soil with rich organic matter, compost and lime to reduce the acidity.
Even mix of sand, silt and clay.
Feels fine-textured and slightly damp.
Adequate drainage, great structure and moisture retaining.
Easily cultivated and full of nutrients.
Ideal soil all year round.
The following plants are well-adapted to loamy soils:
A vigorous climbing plant. Wisteria looks particularly effective when trained over a bare wall or pergola, making it a superb feature plant, and its exquisite aroma make it particularly attractive to bees and butterflies. Our ‘Multijuga’ variety produces delicate trailing clusters of highly fragrant lilac flowers from May through to September.
One of the earliest flowering varieties, this lovely shrub will produce an abundance of rose-purple blooms as early as February and throughout March. For a truly stunning effect plant above a carpet of dainty white Snowdrops, which will flower around the same time.
These daisy-like flowers are one of the most familiar and renowned of all the Anemones White Splendour is excellent for naturalising in areas with full sun or partial shade. They bear large, pure white flowers with a pink flushed reverse in spring and will produce a superb carpet of white if left to multiply over the years to come.
Maintain its fertility with regular dressings of manure or compost.
Feels soft and soapy.
Fertile and drain fairly well.
Rich in nutrients.
Hold more moisture than sandy soils.
The following plants are well-adapted to silty soils:
These spring-flowering bulbs are well-suited for silty soil. There is nothing to match the breath-taking sight of a sweeping carpet of snowdrops, a marvellous herald of spring. Galanthus Woronowii is a giant white snowdrop with green markings. It’s beautiful nodding honey scented flower heads appear as early as January.
Hellebore is a group of flowering perennials that are well-suited to the moist, well-draining conditions of silty soil. These fine Hellebore Orientalis Mixed produce pretty bowl shaped flowers in February to March in an array of hues, some will be spotted within. When left undisturbed, they can produce expanding clumps of evergreen foliage.
Moisture-loving trees such as Dogwood perform well in silty soils. Cornus Midwinter Fire stays true to its namesake, slowly revealing brilliant flame-coloured stems as the leaves fall away. Shoots begin a yellow-orange, with the tips turning a brilliant red as the season goes on, giving the shrub a flaming look.
Add an inch of organic matter (compost, decaying sawdust, or wood shavings) yearly, then add organic fertilizers and then cover with a further 2-3 inches of mulch.
Avoid compaction – minimize walking on garden beds or consider planting on raised beds.
Silty soil has a tendency to become waterlogged – avoid overwatering.
Lumps of white chalk or flint stones are visible in the soil.
Either ‘heavy’ or ‘light’ depending if the soil mixed with the chalk is clay or sand.
Largely made up of calcium carbonate.
The following plants are well-adapted to chalky soils:
Trees and shrubs such as Mock Orange perform beautifully in chalky soils. The heady fragrance of the beautiful ‘Belle Etoile’ is a fantastic addition to the summer border. This Mock Orange, prized for its citrusy scent presents an abundance of single, pure white flowers through late spring and early summer.
Lilacs are perfect shrubs that will thrive even in chalky soils. The delicious fragrant flowers of lilac are not to be missed in the garden in spring and they are one of the season’s best cut flowers. Lilacs can become very big plants so the best place to plant them is at the back of a border or at the perimeter of the garden.
Lavender thrives in soils that are sandy, chalky or alkaline. A beautiful option for the summer garden is a traditional evergreen fragrant Lavender, Lavender Hidcote. Producing an abundance of purple-lilac coloured flowers in July through to September, they enjoy the free-draining soil provided by chalky soils. Grow them in full sun to get the best from them.
Break up the chalk to a depth of 30 inches so that plant roots can spread out and establish.
Add plenty of well-rotted organic matter (compost, composted green waste or manure) to improve the soil.
Attention to watering will be required for a longer period than other soil types.
Petunias have been one of the most popular summer-flowering annuals for many years. Their popularity is due to their several desirable traits. They’re easy to grow, reliable bloomers and are available in a wide range of patterns and colours. With a flowering time from June all the way through to October, Petunias are guaranteed to liven up your garden all through the summer time. Their many varieties range from beautiful border varieties to stunning trailing hanging basket partners. Here are some of our favourites.
Petunias make excellent patio, bedding and border plants. Producing wonderfully bright flowers with beautiful markings and contrasting colours, these versatile flowers will make a showstopping display in any garden.
With rippling double blooms in shades of rosy-pink, coral, white and bi-coloured raspberry and white, these sweetly coloured Petunias are ideal for adding beautiful long-lasting clusters of colour to your borders and containers all summer long. UK-grown Garden Ready Plug plants supplied.
This new versatile variety of Petunia produces vibrant bi-coloured flowers that will add an impact to any summer basket, border or container display. The large blooms have sunny yellow centres that gradually fade in to a deep purple edging around the outer petals. UK-grown 3cm diameter plug plants supplied.
Our beautiful collection of bi-coloured Petunias are the ideal plants for brightening up your summer garden. The collection of 12 includes 3 each of Cosmic Purple (purple), Knight Rider (purple/cream), Maniac Lilac (white/lilac) and Cosmic Moonstruck (purple/yellow). UK-grown 3cm diameter plug plants supplied.
Bright, bold and bursting with life, these elegant trailing Petunias are the perfect partner for summer hanging baskets. These trailing varieties will reward you with masses of bright colour all summer long.
This unique trailing Petunia produces double, ruffled hot pink flowers with a thick pale pink band around the edge. These prolific flowering blooms also have a pretty deep pink veining and a beautiful fragrance, which makes this variety a delight in summer hanging baskets. UK-grown 3cm diameter jumbo plug plants supplied.
Petunia Tumbelina is a very distinctive variety. Their large, double ruffled blooms are a perfect solution for adding a dose of colour to your summer baskets. This highly fragrant trailing Petunia can even be planted in window boxes and containers for endless display possibilities. UK-grown 3cm jumbo plug plants supplied.
Does a mass of magenta purple flowers sound like something for you? Petunia Purple Flash will add a splash of vibrancy to your summer displays with their distinctive star-shaped white marking at the centre of their purple petals. These hardy blooms are guaranteed for months of enjoyment. UK-grown 3cm jumbo plug plants supplied.
Here is our guide for planting these popular annual flowers.
Preferably plant in full sun, but partial shade will keep them refreshed in the heat of summer.
Use a light, fertile soil that provides good drainage.
Plant in a good-sized hole that can easily accommodate the plant.
Add a layer of organic matter (compost) to the base of the hole and fork it in.
Give the plants a weekly deep watering.
Use a liquid fertilizer every two to three weeks.
Preferably plant in full sun, but partial shade will keep them refreshed in the heat of summer.
Use a sturdy container with at least one drainage hole.
Fill the container with a lightweight potting mix to promote healthy drainage.
Mix a slow-release fertilizer into the potting soil.
Water daily and deeply, then let the pot drain. (Water the soil and not the foliage.
#NationalPollinatorsMonth in June encourages the planting pollinator-friendly gardens with pollen and nectar-producing plants. When these gardens bloom, they attract bees, birds, bats, and other natural pollinators.
Woody shrubs provide food, shelter and breeding spaces for our wildlife. Nesting birds and hibernating insects make their homes in them and insects like butterflies use them as natural windbreaks. We have some great recommendations for shrubs that can make great habitats for wildlife in your garden.
Winning the RHS Garden Merit Award, Orange Glow is a sturdy evergreen shrub that produces spring blossoms and bright orange berries in the summer. This shrub provides nesting for birds and an abundant source of pollen and food for bees.
This vigorous deciduous shrub is smothered with large, fragrant, pompom-like clusters of white or pale green tinted flowers every May and June. Purple foliage appears autumn when vibrant red berries, which provide an excellent food source for the birds.
A true ‘wildlife hotel’. Bring a profusion of vibrant colour to the summer garden with the Honeysuckle plant. The sweet, heady scent carried on a warm summer breeze is one of the most delightful experiences of the season, and the scent is strongest at night, which attracts pollinating moths.
A must for wildlife lovers. Also known as the ‘Butterfly Bush’, this Buddleia’s beautiful cool violet-blue blooms produce a lovely honey fragrance that is guaranteed to attract masses of butterflies and bees.
Awarded the RHS ‘Perfect for Pollinators’ Award, this fantastic dwarf-growing shrub is certainly a wildlife haven. Weigela Pink Poppet is a long flowering variety that will attract a range of pollinators, from bees, butterflies and other nectar loving insects.
This variety produces small white flowers renowned for their vanilla aroma. After flowering, this compact and hardy shrub will also yield an abundance of shiny black berries that birds love, making it the perfect plant for a winter wildlife garden.
As the name ‘Constant Cheer’ suggests, this exquisite hardy perennial produces long lasting prolific orange red flowers that mature to purple. This creates an amazing multi-coloured flowering feature plant that is highly attractive to bees, butterflies and other insects.
Winner of the RHS Garden Merit Award for their reliable performance, stability of colour and form and good resistance to pests and diseases. This fantastic shrub is perfect for attracting bees into the garden, through their heady fragrance.
This upright deciduous shrub 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.
The ideal border perennial with an abundance of star shaped flowers. Gaura Whirling Butterflies pretty free-flowering white flower spikes, which resemble a fluttering butterfly, and also are handy for attracting beneficial insects to the garden, such as bees.
When planting for nectar, avoid double flowers or sterile varieties that limit the feeding opportunities for insects.
Select suitable plants for your garden’s conditions.
Pelargoniums, commonly known as geraniums, are a large, diverse group of beautiful, ornamental bedding plants. They come in a wide variety of shapes, sizes and wonderful colours making them one of the staples of many gardeners. They are used to provide colourful displays in beds and borders, hanging baskets and all manner of containers, plus indoors and in conservatories and greenhouses. From upright, climbing or cascading, to single and double flowering, our complete range is sure to have something that’s perfect for you. All of our Pelargoniums are UK-grown plants that are specially grown in dedicated UK nurseries.
Gardeners love to grow Pelargonium species for their long lasting blooms and beautiful vibrant flowers for . So let’s take a tour of the different varieties of Geraniums and their own unique characteristics.
Trailing Geraniums are perfect for producing a stunning tumbling mass of colour and create a marvelous sight when gently cascading over the side of summer baskets and planters. Also named ivy Geraniums due to the resemblance of this geranium’s leaves with ivy, ivy Geraniums boast glossy leaves rather the fleshy, slightly curled at the edges leaves seen in zonals.
The biggest feature of these geraniums is that they are of the trailing type and can be found tumbling out of hanging baskets with their cascades of pretty flowers. Their blooms can be either single or semi double for beautiful displays of colour.
The beautiful Trailing Geranium Mixed produces an avalanche of colour often seen in Germany and Alpine Europe. This prolific flowering mixture will produce a colourful and vibrant swathe of blooms that trail 60-70cm. They require little attention and are drought resistant, perfect for hanging baskets and window boxes.
Like the well-loved traditional single Geranium, this superb double trailing variety is incredibly hardy and flowers continuously throughout the summer, producing distinctive, scalloped foliage and dense clusters of ruffled, double flower heads for twice the amount of beauty.
These double trailing Geraniums have a fantastic cascading habit making them perfect for hanging baskets. The rosebud like flowers are bursting with a vibrant bright red colour that will create an eye catching display whether planted on their own or mixed with other trailing plants.
These upright varieties look great in pots and containers and can be used in your garden borders and rockeries to great effect during spring and summer. Here is a guide to the different species of patio Geraniums.
Zonal and Grandeur
In addition to the name Zonal Geraniums, they are often called garden or common geraniums. Zonal geraniums are a type of Pelargonium that get their name from the “zone” of red, blue, or purple colour striping through the middle of their leaves, so this physical attribute is a helpful way to distinguish a zonal Geranium. Also bushy plants and mainly used for containers and bedding, these Geraniums have been hybridized for size and an abundance and colors of flowers.
Geranium Grandeur Power Rose Splash will produce stunning flowers in summer. Producing strong, vibrant flowers with luxurious bushy foliage at the base, this variety is great for growing on the patio or in containers where they can be fully appreciated. Also, with their fine foliage, they are a great addition to a bed or border.
These climbing Antik geraniums are extremely vigorous growers, able to reach around 150cm tall in a single season. These giant Geraniums come in a great range of colours and will create a beautiful display when planted in large containers.
Geranium Antik Pink is a gorgeous pink blush which deep green foliage. Perfect for a large container display as illustrated to enhance your patio space. With supports these vigorous geraniums will climb up to 2m and create a true showstopping piece in the summer time.
Our F1 Geraniums do not disappoint, producing an abundance of rounded, papery flowers in rich scarlet red above palmately lobed foliage. We only use finest quality F1 seeds to produce compact yet robust plug plants with well-established root systems.
Producing an abundance of rounded, papery flowers, our Geranium Century F1 Red will add a touch of elegance to the summer garden with their rich scarlet red blooms and palmately lobed foliage. These Geraniums are the perfect choice for providing masses of colour to your summer flower beds and patio containers.
Flowering from June to September this prolofic flowering and colourful mixture of Geraniums produces an abundance of bright colours to liven up the summer garden. These versatile plants look fantastic when planted on the patio in containers or as a stunning flower bed display. Also worth a try on window boxes.
Plant out Pelargoniums in May through to June (after the danger of frost has passed).
Pelargoniums can be grown in borders or containers. In borders or beds, plant in fertile, neutral to alkaline soil. Most prefer full sun. Regal cultivars prefer partial shade and zonal cultivars will tolerate some shade.
Dig a good sized hole, big enough to easily accommodate the rootball. Add a layer of organic matter – such as compost or planting compost – to the base of the hole and fork it in.
Place the rootball in the planting hole and adjust the planting depth so that it is planted at the same depth as it was originally growing and the top of the rootball is level with the soil surface.
Mix in more organic matter with the excavated soil and fill in the planting hole.
Water in well, apply a granular general feed over the soil and add a 5-7.5cm (2-3in) deep mulch of well-rotted garden compost or bark chippings around the root area to conserve soil moisture and help keep down weeds.
If you are a home gardener and want to grow something which will adorn your garden and at the same time will be useful to you (rather than being just showy), consider currants! They are a beautiful fruit (and its flowers too) to look at, as well as being an excellent source of home grown produce for using in your own recipes. In this blog, we’ll be covering all the areas of planting currants, from varieties, planting instructions and aftercare to make your gardening jobs easier.
Celebrated for their high vitamin C content, currant berries make an excellent addition to your fruit garden and to a healthy diet. There are many reasons to grow them; firstly, they are extremely easy and hassle-free to grow, so you require not much knowledge of gardening; secondly, they give you a large yield of a highly nutritious food item that will enhance your garden’s looks with delightful colours. With their main varieties being black, red and white, these are sweet and sour flavourful fruits that come in the following varieties (typically classified by their colours).
Blackcurrants are self-fertile plants, so we recommend planting blackcurrant plants close to each other, like our Blackcurrant Wellington XXX. This popular choice was established around sixty years ago and is a perfect addition to any gardens big or small, all you need is some space on the patio for a pot. A traditional variety, our Blackcurrant XXX produces heavy crops of fruit annually to give you an abundance of produce year after year.
The humble Red Currant Berry have really proven to be an enduringly popular choice among fruit gardeners. Red currants are typically used for making jellies, juices, purees and more. They are usually self-pollinating plants but, in some conditions, benefit from cross-pollinating with another variety, like another red or white variety.
Our Currants Red Lake are a vigorous species due to their prolonged periods of blooming and ripening. This is a simple to grow variety producing heavy crops of red berries year after year. An ideal choice for both experienced and amateur gardeners; our ‘Red Lake’ is perfect for harvesting your own produce for that summer vitamin boost.
White currants are a variety of sweet, succulent berries with a grape-like flavour, perfect for serving fresh for a summer treat. Just like red currants, white currants are too usually self-pollinating but can cross-pollinate with other varieties. Perfect soft fruit additions to the garden for a bountiful and sweet April/May harvest.
Currant White Versaillesis an easy fruit to grow, making them a perfect choice for both experienced and amateur gardeners. Producing a heavy crop of white berries on trailing trusses year after year, this particularly sweet variety is a perfect choice for the cool conditions of the north of England, as they thrive best in cooler climates.
Here is our easy to follow guide for planting a garden full of currants for summer fruit.
Plant between Autumn through till Spring.
Use well-drained, weed-free soil enriched with well-rotted manure.
Plant in a sunny or at most a dappled shade position.
Plant with tip of stem at soil level and approx. 150cm apart and 150cm between rows.
Water well after planting and daily afterwards in dry weather.
Same planting process applies for potted plants.
In this tutorial, our resident gardening expert Jeff demonstrates how to plant Blackcurrant plants for delicious and healthy summer produce.
Train as an open centred, goblet-shaped bush – this allows light and air to flow freely around the branches and makes picking easier.
Add additional mulch every year to bring plants up to the proper depth.
Keep the soil moist by watering from the time they begin growing in spring until after harvest.
Add some fertiliser once a year in the early spring.
Remove fallen leaves and other plant debris before snowfall.
Prune anytime between October and March; this will improve sun exposure to the plant and help to maintain good air circulation.
Beginning in the fourth year, prune out the oldest wood annually.
Remove any weak new growth.
Companion planting is an integral part of gardening for maximizing the use of your garden space, providing nutrients, shade or support, increasing crop productivity, attracting beneficial insects and there are many more perks. Since currants do well planted in shade, pairing them with other plants that prefer shade is the best choice for pairings.
For current companions, here are some of our top flower pairing choices:
Marigolds are a great pairing for currants as they help to keep pests away from their produce, like pesky hoverflies. One of our favourite varieties is our Marigold Marvel Vanilla; this double flowering variety blooms creamy white flowers that would pair beautifully alongside currant bushes in beds and borders.
In a shady, unused spot, you can try planting your currant bushes under an apple tree, like our beautiful Apple Blenheim Orange. This excellent red flushed variety is a perfect addition for creating a fantastic edible garden. Our Blenheim Orange produces a heavy crop and makes an amazing accompaniment to traditional pie recipes and other delicious desserts.
Looking for advice on how to plant Buddleia this spring? Through this informative guide, we will share all our best knowledge and tips on the planting, arrangement and aftercare for your Buddleia shrubs. When it is covered in butterflies, no other garden plant brings so much pleasure on a summer’s day!
Buddleia, also known as Butterfly Bush, is one of Britain’s most popular summer flowering shrubs. Buddleia comes from Asia and there are more than 100 species that have spread from northern India, China and South Africa to Central and South America, largely after being introduced by the great plant hunters around the beginning of the 20th century.
Buddleia are superb additions to the garden for attracting wildlife with butterflies and bees being big fans of this shrub. Known for their burst of colour and their distinct tubular fragrant flowers, this vigorous, deciduous shrub is the perfect choice for summer blooms. Here are our guides to planting out in the garden and in containers for easy planting this spring.
In the Garden
Great for long-term borders/rockeries. They perform best when planted in full sun (or at least in partial shade) and in fertile, well-drained soil. Dependent on the variety, plant around 5 to 10 feet apart for a gorgeous display. Plant Buddleia in Spring or in Autumn before the first frosts and water thoroughly after planting.
When planting, loosen the soil and mix in compost and dig a hole twice the diameter of the plant container.
They will not perform well if grown in soil that tends to retain a lot of water in the winter.
Do not plant under trees.
Use a pot deep enough to contain the roots and heavy enough to weigh the plant down. Make sure the pot has a good amount of drainage holes to allow the roots to breathe. Place the pot in full sunlight and water regularly. Cut the plant back around 10-12 inches in late winter or early spring.
Whisky Barrels make great planters
Avoid garden soil which becomes heavy/compact in containers.
Dwarf varieties like our Minature Collection are the best choice for pots and containers.
In this gardening tutorial, our resident gardening expert Jeff demonstrates how to plant Buddleia (Butterfly Bush) for summer flowering and shares his tips and tricks for getting the best results out of these beautiful shrubs.
When in bloom, you can snip their stems for honey scented cut flower bouquets.
Buddleia can be pruned hard after flowering, and you should cut shoots back to strong buds/younger growth.
We recommend reducing plants by half in Autumn when they are grown in windy positions.
Removing the dead blooms and watering the plants in very dry conditions will bring butterflies flocking to your Buddleia plants.
You can take softwood cutting in late spring just as the stems begin to harden up a little.
This magical hybrid showcases a mix between the usual blue-purple varieties along with a yellow flowered species. This plant’s gorgeous spikes of flowers blend perfectly from purple to orange for a sensational display of multi-coloured shades and sweet scent to radiate your summer garden.
The stunning fragrant white flowers are displayed on strong arching branches that are amazing for attracting wildlife in to the garden. Ideal for brightening your summer gardens in patio pots and containers.
Purple Lion is a stunning, fragrant dwarf variety of Buddleia. This compact plant bears large purple flower spikes along with attractive silver-green foliage making Purple Lion the perfect long term addition to borders/rockeries and patio pots.
The green foliage of Lantanas are topped with clusters of tiny, vibrant little flowers that are superb plants for attracting birds, butterflies and bees to the garden, making them a perfect pollinator companion for Buddleias.
This variety is the perfect colour complimenting partner for white and purple Buddleias. These snow white, compactly formed flowers with bright yellow centers are an ideal plant for filling your landscape as ground cover or in containers to bring the wildlife swarming to your beautiful pollinator friendly garden.
A border of Asters creates a truly unforgettable spectacle. Combine with Buddleia for a truly delightful show of colour. They are bound to liven up your garden as Asters are great pollinator attracting plants with their bright colours and nectar rich, wide open blooms.
This vivid pink variety of these tough, sun-loving perennial plants are a great easy to grow pairing with Buddleia. Their cheerful ornamental cluster of flowers will certainly bring a pop of colour to summer rock gardens, borders and pots.
Need help on how to plant Cactus Dahlias? In this blog, we’ve compiled a guide full of tips and advice on planting, arrangement, and aftercare for your Cactus Dahlias, to allow you to get the best performance from your plants.
This special, eye-catching variety of Cactus Dahlias are distinctive by their unusual shaped summer flowers, which look fantastic planted together for colour bursting garden displays and borders, as well as when planted as a standalone item. They can flower until Autumn and have a wide range of interesting varieties, all with very showy flower shapes and rich colour shades.
Dahlia tubers can be planted 10cm deep in fertile well drained soil, outdoors in spring when the frost has disappeared. If you plant before the frosts are over, they may get frosted and die, so pot in March or early April for flowering in early July. They prefer to be in a sunny location and spaced at approximately 45cm apart.
Dahlias start blooming about 8 weeks after planting, starting in mid-July.
Some gardeners start tubers indoors in containers a month ahead to get a jump on the season.
In this video tutorial, our resident gardener Jeff covers how to plant Cactus Dahlia tubers in to pots and shares helpful tips and advice on how to achieve the best results out of your Dahlia plants.
There’s no need to water the soil until the dahlia plants appear; in fact, overwatering can cause tubers to rot. After dahlias are established, provide a deep watering 2 to 3 times a week, preferably more in hotter, dry climates.
In areas where there is extreme cold, dig up dahlias and store in a cool peat over the winter and then replanted the following year.
Apply a high potash fertiliser every few weeks in the summer to help growth and they can be dead headed when necessary.