If you’ve been following my blogs, you will know that earlier on in the year I had four raised beds built for the purpose of growing cut flowers.
Towards the end of May, I started to plant these beds up so thought it would be useful to reflect on progress and what I’ve learnt so far.
Dear Santa, please can I have a Greenhouse for Christmas. Because I don’t currently have a greenhouse, at the start of the year I had a go at germinating some flowers from seed in the house. However, space was limited, so I was limited with how many trays I could experiment with. As a result, the remainder of my flowers were sowed directly into the flower bed. I live in a relatively warm part of the country so they did start to germinate quickly, however, as of today, there is still less growth on them compared to those started off in the house. The fabulous thing about greenhouses is that they provide you with a head start, meaning you get flowers sooner (I do hope my husband is reading this😘🎅)
Sweet Peas – If growing these from seed, then it’s absolutely vital you acclimatise them to the temperature before planting them out. This means that in roughly the last month of frosts you start taking them out during the day to gently harden them before finally planting them out. My sweet peas are only just getting going and there have been moments when I wondered whether if they would ever do anything. I do know they can take their time to find their feet and I’m happy to report mine have finally done this. However, some still look a little ‘under the weather’, and whilst I’m going to persevere and pray for blooms, next year I will be a little more careful around this acclimatisation period as I believe mine did go into a little shock when I planted them out.
Growing conditions – For next year I will need to incorporate some sort of protection around my raised beds. I always thought this part of my garden was quite sheltered but since popping in the raised beds I’ve been able to see how much it does catch the wind. I wonder whether my flowers may have been a little further forward as a result of having this additional protection – definitely a must for next year.
Protection – I used little sections of netting to help protect my seeds. However, in hindsight, it has proven a little time consuming to take on and off as and when required. Next year I will use one piece of netting to cover the whole of the bed as opposed to individual sections. I will also create a system that allows netting to be raised, to accommodate flowers as they grow at their different paces.
Be patient – I’ve discovered I’m not very patient when it comes to growing flowers – Its such a new adventure and being my first year, I’m so desperate to see some blooms. I think its partly as a check to prove I’m doing something right. Time will tell.
Don’t forget to feed, feed and feed as we are now well and truly in the growing phase and also do share any of your top tips below – would be great to hear from you.
With love and stay safe,
Flowers and Lifestyle by Margot – www.instagram.com/flowersandlifestylebymargot/
Find out more about me – www.flowersandlifestylebymargot.co.uk