Watch, wait, water

Seedlings flourishing in Karen’s beautiful garden

It’s a strange feeling once you’ve planted up your cut flower bed and you begin watching and waiting for them to bloom. The work doesn’t stop here though, as there are a few things you can do to give them the best possible start.

Keep your small plants or seeds watered and fed. I water every day, either with a hose on a very gentle setting or with a watering can with a spray end.  You need to be gentle as you don’t want to damage the plants or wash away the seeds. I recommend watering the base if you already have an established plant as opposed to the top. I also feed with liquid seaweed every one-two weeks.

Make sure you are ready to support your blooms.  With everything taking a little longer to make its way through the postal service currently, I would recommend ordering supports now so you have them when your plants have grown enough to need them. 

Also, make sure you are thinking about successive sowing so you can extend your harvest of blooms. I do this with troughs or pots, so again now is the time to have some at the ready or purchase some so you have them when needed.  With your troughs and pots, I recommend covering them with netting that remains in place until the plants are big enough to remove. We had a windy couple of days here recently where I lost a covering and I can personally attest that you don’t want your feathered friends, as lovely as they all are, making a three-course meal out of your hard work!

Gorgeous galvanised planters from Garden Trading

Do think about adding herbs. They smell delicious and will add fabulous texture to your bouquets. Also, if you’re a keen cook, you can add them to your dishes. This year I’ve gone for mint and Rosemary. Mint is most probably my favourite but be aware as it does have a tendency to run a little wild. You can either confine a whole bed to it or pop it in a pot, which is what I’ve done. Rosemary, on the other hand, takes a little longer to become established, but again it adds fabulous texture and scent to a bouquet.

Ensure good drainage in pots and troughs

Other jobs to be getting on with.

  • Now is the time to prune and feed evergreen shrubs like Buxus and Bay and to treat them. I use an antifungal feed. Remember, you can add both of these shrubs to your flower arrangements to, so don’t be too quick to throw the trimmings on the compost heap (and of course you can also use Bay in your cooking).
  • Look after your finished spring bulbs for next year. Make sure you resist the temptation to cut back the foliage. Instead, let it die and break down on its own and add liquid fertiliser all around the clumps. 
  • Tie in climbing, rambling roses and sweet peas to encourage them to climb.
  • Prune spring-flowering shrubs after flowering.
  • And finally, closely inspect plants for pests and diseases – early prevention is much easier than curing an infestation.

With love and stay safe,

Flowers and Lifestyle by Margot – Find out more about me –

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