In the Higgledy Garden, Hardy Annuals are the main act. Some may argue that they haven’t got the beauty and finesse of their half hardy counterparts but this would be missing the point. Hardy annuals have a simplicity and a reliability that over the years etches a favourable pattern in even the coldest hearts of the most curmudgeonly flower farmers.
If you are a newbie to the sport and you are unsure of the differences between hardy and half-hardy flowers then click on the word and be transported to clarity.
This is a list of ‘why grow’…for a guide to ‘How to grow hardy annuals (In Autumn)‘…click the link.
*Hardy annual flowers that are sown in late summer/early autumn can be either grown outside or kept under cover over the winter in pots. The pot sown chaps can be planted out in a mild week in March or April. The plants produced by an autumn sowing are usually considerably bigger and produce many more flowers. They also start flowering much earlier than spring-sown seeds.
The first flowers will arrive in June….or even May if we have a warm spring. So if you have a combination of autumn-sown seeds and spring-sown seeds you should have flowers until Halloween. (If you are organised you will have also sown biennials in June and this will mean you will have flowers from March through until October.)
Our chums the hardy annuals are the beasts of burden in the cutting patch. ‘Cut and come again’…they will keep on producing flowers like their lives depended on it….which I suppose it does.
Among my personal favs are Cornflowers, Larkspur, Ammi majus, Candytuft, Calendula, Eschscholzia, Godetia, Nigella, Gypsophila (Covent garden being the classy one…), Phacelia and Borage. Naturally, you can buy these beauties in the Higgledy Seed Emporium of Dreams but you can also buy a discounted bundle of 14 packets….1/3rd off….with free shipping….plastic fee packaging….£18.20. #HardSell
I am presently growing my flowers at the wonderful Bluebell Cottage Nursery in Cheshire. The patch is great in most respects but it does have a problem with the pernicious couch grass. With this in mind, I opt to sow my seeds into pots…let them get to a good size…and then plant them out. This prevents me from having to spend hours on end weeding between tiny seedlings and becoming even more grumpy than I usually am. (I plant just about all my seedlings just under a foot apart).
If you are interested in giving autumn sown hardy annuals a go….don’t hang about….get them sown before mid September. I’m sowing mine in the first week of September.
If you have any questions then please ask away…you can find me on TwitterorFacebook.Should you wish you can join ‘Club Higgledy’ (see the right hand side bar). This is a six times a year email with links to my discounted bundles….these are offered to subscribers first as they are usually limited in number.
Higgers and Flash
PS. Since I had my first haircut since before the lockdown, Flash is very wary of me….he’s been keeping me under close surveillance…he’s not sure if I’m an interloper.