Sow your seeds today and reap the rewards in the summer

Mar 11, 2014 - POSTED BY Anna Halloran - Gardeners Choice , Whats Hot

Thompson and Morgan have their own breeding programme and have introduced a stunning new variety of one of my favourite poppies, Papaver Patty’s Plum. T & M’s new variety is called Papaver Orientale Plum Pudding and it is both long flowering and strong stemmed. It has a beautiful plum colour, and if you’re lucky you may get a second display later in the summer. I often plant my borders in layers, and have successfully planted dahlias and poppies together, so that just as the poppy fades, the dahlia emerges and takes over the display.

Cosmos Double Click Mixed seeds have long been a best-selling seed mix fir Thompson and Morgan, but for those who prefer single colours, there is now available a beautiful double cosmos in standard blush rose colour.  Cosmos flowers throughout the summer and are invaluable for filling in the gaps in herbaceous borders, even Rosemary Verey used to introduce them for this purpose. I find they make a wonderful contrast to clipped box edging and feel they should not be confined to cottage garden style borders.

If you’re looking to provide aroma as well as ambience, one of the best smelling flowers is Nicotiana sylvestris.  This branching, upright biennial with beautiful dark green leaves and sweetly fragrant white flowers up to 9 cm long, is perfect for planting near outdoor seating areas.

The RHS have added 8 new seed collections and all RHS members have the benefit of ordering up to 12 packets of seeds for £8.50.  The seed collections fall into the following categories: self sowers, easy to grow, meadow mix, cut flowers, shady space, dry garden, connoiseurs and perfect for pollinators.  How temptingly easy is that and how amazingly little it costs for so much enjoyment!

Dobies of Devon were awarded the ‘Best Buy’ seed supplier by Which? Gardening and they provide many beautiful seeds for you to choose from. One of the varieties that caught my eye was Verbascum Antique Rose. This has soft pink tubular flowers held on strong stems and flowers throughout June and July. Verbascum Antique Rose self-seeds so you have the bonus of a beautiful display year on year.