London (change)
16 messages
08/03/2013 at 21:04

I'm totally new to gardening, so would be grateful for any advice. I received mail order plants this week to plant up a new 8x2m border. These are currently sitting outside on the patio and the plan was to get them in this weekend. Now I'm worried as the forecast is snow and frost for Sunday onwards and into next week. Most of the plants are fully hardy, but a few of them are borderline/frost hardy (Cistus, Verbena, Hebe). I live in Surrey. Do I get everything in this weekend while the weather will be OK, mulch well and hope for the best, or bring all the containerised plants into the garage until the weather improves? Thanks!

08/03/2013 at 21:12

if they're still in pots I think I'd put thm in the garage for a few days. Extreme cold can't go on for much longer (please). A lot depends on where they've been up til now. Some plants are sold that have never been outside. Any sort of frost would be a shock to them..

08/03/2013 at 21:13
No, I would leave it for a week or so. Very cold weather in the forecast. Cistus is not too,hardy or hebe if planted too soon. Can you leave in pots and cover with fleece or bring into your garage for while. Nothing gained plantIng too soon but everything to lose
08/03/2013 at 21:21
I agree, get them in the garage for a few days until it's warmer. That way you know you won't lose anything. It sounds like a coldframe might be of use to you too, very reasonably priced these days in normal high street shops.
08/03/2013 at 21:21

Thanks for such a quick response. I can easily bring them all into the garage and then consider planting next weekend or the one after if necessary. I work 9-5 so won't have time to plant during weekdays. Any tips on looking after them for a couple of weeks holding in the garage? In any case, I've learnt a valuable lesson not to order too early next time.

08/03/2013 at 21:25

Once the extreme cold/wind is over you could put them in a sheltered spot right up against the house. They'll be OK in the garage for a week if there's no heat in there

08/03/2013 at 21:29

I have such a sheltered spot in a walled area near the house, so a week in the garage while the snow/frost passes followed by bringing them back out again next week looks like the way forward then. The garage is unheated and has large windows.

08/03/2013 at 21:30
Dan2 clocks change in 3 weeks and that heralds longer daylight evenings. What size pots are your plants in? Are they small? I'm a great believer in growing plants on in bigger pots and then put into ground
08/03/2013 at 21:33

Agree with the bigger pots Verdun and get them into the soil before they're potbound, which doesn't take long once the growing season starts. 

08/03/2013 at 21:36

The vast majority are in 2 litre pots, but there are a few in 9cm pots (Vinca minor, digitalis)


08/03/2013 at 21:39
Yes nut I'm finding that young plants grow so very fast right now. I'm potting on regularly now with plants seemingly doubling in size in a matter of couple of weeks....and I,have no heat. I bought lupins, for example, a month or so ago in 9 cm pots and now they are outgrowing their I litre pots.
08/03/2013 at 21:41
Dan.2 I would pot up those still in 9 cm pots. 2 litre are fine
08/03/2013 at 21:44

I'm just talking about it. I have a large number of plants needing my attention and I've done nothing at all.

09/03/2013 at 18:49
I can't believe AG mag says to plant your annual s out this week,
I have hardly planted seeds yet and will plant out towards the end of April into May. Snow expected in lots of areas this week, imagine planting out in that.
09/03/2013 at 19:27
Lyn I have come to lose confidence in many of these gardening magazines. The Garden, by RHS, however is very good.
10/03/2013 at 09:49

This forum is by far the best place for advise

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