Spring garden: what to plant now

Spring garden: what to plant now

Make the most of getting your flowerbeds ready for summery colour.


Once you are pretty sure frosty mornings aren’t going to return, planting in spring gives you a nice long growing season for new plants to get established before next winter arrives.


Roses
Bare-root roses should be planted in loose soil so the roots can establish themselves quickly. Dig their holes about a foot deep, mixing in good compost and watering the soil before leaving it for a couple of days. Roses like a slightly more acidic soil so you might need to add other treatments to improve the soil’s balance. Before planting, gently loosen the root ball. Water your roses every three days or so for a few weeks – more often if the weather is hot and dry.

Location – good draining, slightly alkaline soil, where the roses will get good sunlight (especially in the morning, to allow dew to dry off).


Begonias
Bright and pretty, these plants are happy to grow in shady gardens. When you know the weather is definitely getting more mild, loosen the soil and gently stand the begonia tubers with the indented side facing up. Plant them about 20cm apart from and don’t cover them over with soil. Water them well.

Location – plant in slightly moist soil but not where it gets water-logged. Look for a partially shaded spot away from where it gets too dry.

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Marigolds and poppies
Hardy annuals like these can be planted in spring and will offer lasting flowers in summer. Clear away weeds, rake your soil and then make shallow grooves to plant your seeds. Specific seed packets will carry advice for the plants you have chosen. Keep the area weeded and watered. Once the plants are established, you only have to water them every couple of weeks, but in hot weather make sure their soil doesn’t dry out completely.

Location – plant in lighter soils that don’t remain too cold after winter.


Savvy tip
Water your plants in the morning so there is time for the soil to get really damp before the day warms up and dries out surface moisture.


Pass it on – Savvy tips for great roses.

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