London (change)
6 messages
11/04/2013 at 22:31

hi , this is my first post , im a bit of a newbie when it comes to growing fruit and veg etc , my first and im sure not my last question is , could someone please explain what , hardy , perennial , half hardy etc means , thanks

11/04/2013 at 22:34

Hardy- will withstand frost (down to about -10 deg C)

Half-Hardy - will need some sort of protection (greehouse, horticultural fleece etc) for anything below freezing

Tender - needs to be brought indoors if frost forecast

Perennial - Plant that comes up each year - either same plant, or from seeds it's dropped (or 'set') the previous year.


11/04/2013 at 22:36

Hi Glen

Perennial, lives for several years, many years for some

Annuals germinate, flower and seed in one growing season.

biennials germinate one year and flower the next

Hardy plants can take our climate and won't die in the frost

half hardy means they'll probably die in the winter - too cold for them

Tender - they will die in the winter

Perennials, biennials and annuals can be hardy, half hardy or tender.

11/04/2013 at 22:46

many thanks for your quick replies , that helps alot

11/04/2013 at 23:18

That's OK Glen. Not many questions go unanswered here

11/04/2013 at 23:22

Half hardy actually means they can't cope with forsts and should be hardened off by day but brought under cover at night till teh frosts are over in mid May for most of mainland Britain.  They will die with the first autumn frosts.

Hardy used to mean it could withstand frost but there are, of course, degrees of cold so the RHS has recently revised its hardiness definitions to take account of this.  Se ehere and click on "hardiness ratings" in the text for a full list -

Tender plants need to be kept indoors, in conservatories or in heated greenhouses as they can't stand cold, let alone frost.   Most houseplants are in this category but can go out for some fresh air in summer.

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