Gardening tips: Expert on how to grow lavender at home
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Although the UK is still experiencing freezing temperatures, experts are advising gardeners to plant certain flowers now so they can reach their “prime” when spring arrives. Not getting ahead with planting now can mean gardens appear “unpleasant and uninviting” just as the sun begins to shine. Flowers to plant now include sweet peas and tulips.
A spokesperson from Garden Buildings Direct said: “For many garden lovers, spring is the highlight of the year as they can finally rejoice in some much-needed sunlight to show off their beautiful outdoor space.
“However, we’re still facing the bitter winter weather, so we know not everyone has given their garden as much attention as it may need.
“This is why we’re advising people to take action early, by picking up the rake and getting their seeds planted in the ground to prepare their outdoor space to shine ahead of spring.”
1. Sweet peas
Sweet peas can brighten up any outdoor space in the spring, bringing it to life with an array of different colours.
The experts said: “They often resist the colder temperatures so they can withstand the winter weather and start to blossom quickly once it’s warmer.”
According to the Royal Horticultural Society (RHS), sweet peas are easy to grow in any fertile soil which drains easily, preferably in full sun.
They won’t flower well in shade however, and may rot in very wet, heavy soil and so it is important to cater for their needs.
The gardening experts said: “The striking tall flowers can be planted a few months in advance as they’re able to survive the winter breeze.
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“It can take up to 10 weeks for tulips to grow, so it’s best to get them planted as early as possible.”
Tulips are great for growing in borders, rock gardens as well as containers and can provide the garden with lots of bright colour. According to the RHS, gardeners should replace the bulbs annually for the best displays outside.
Experts from Garden Buildings Direct continued: “These are great to plant during the colder months as they resist freezing temperatures and manage to blossom right at the start of spring if planted in time.
“To make a nice display in the garden, plant around 20 together in a cluster so they’ll be fully grown in time for spring.”
The RHS recommends placing these flowers in partial shade, where they should grow well in moist soil types, apart from permanently wet soil.
The experts said these plants dislike very dry, sandy soils, especially in the full sun as this may dry the bulbs out in the summer.
The gardening pros from Garden Buildings Direct explained: “Pansies help to cover bare patches and distract from unattractive garden areas with their bright colours.
“They may need additional protective covers if the weather takes a turn for the worse, as pansies can become damaged if they’re out in freezing temperatures for too long. Keep an eye on the temperature and be prepared to give them some extra protection.”
Petunias are another flower which can be planted now, although if it starts to snow, gardeners will need to take them inside to prevent harming their growth.
Otherwise, they can blossom and grow very well in time for spring when planted now. The experts added: “It’s also worth investing in a flower basket to make them shine to their full potential.”
While they work best when planted in autumn, primroses can also be planted in the winter months and still flower in spring for the milder spring months.
Colours including yellows and pinks are often favoured to make the garden look most inviting around the Easter period.
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