How to sow half-hardy annuals

Do it:

Mar, Apr

Takes just:

15 minutes

At its best:

Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep

Half-hardy annuals are quick to flower and provide a burst of colour in summer borders and pot displays. To give them as long a flowering season as possible, sow seed early so that plants have plenty of time to establish before planting out.

Once risk of frost has passed, plant your home-sown plants outside. Many varieties sown indoors by March or April will start to flower as early as June.

You will need

Seed tray

Good quality compost

Half-hardy annual seeds

A bright, warm place

Advertisement

Fill a tray with seed compost, then sow a tiny pinch of seeds in each cell. Cover with vermiculite, water and place the tray in a propagator in a warm spot.

Once seeds have sprouted, wait until two pairs of leaves form. Transplant each seedling into a 7cm pot filled with sieved multi-purpose compost.

Water well after transplanting and keep the pots in a warm, bright place. Avoid exposure to bright sunlight, which can scorch the young leaves.

When all risk of frost has passed, move the plants to a cold frame or patio, bringing them in at night. After a week you can plant them outside.

Advertisement

Discover more ideas and inspiration

Related content

Creating a summer pot

How to grow annual climbers from seed

How to sow sweet pea seeds

Related offers

Offer

15 salvias for £11

This weekend only, buy a collection of 15 beautiful hardy salvias for just £11 at Hayloft. Salvias are reliable and easy to grow, providing fresh, long-lasting colour from mid to late summer. Offer ends at midnight on Monday 24 July, 2017.

Order now

Offer

Save on fragrant phlox

Create a carpet of fragrant flowers in beds and borders, or use these beautiful creeping phlox to trail from containers. You'll save up to £30 on fragrant groundcover phlox when you buy 20 plants for just £24.99.

Order now

HALF PRICE

Subscriber only content

Half-price lavenders

Save 50 per cent when you buy a pair of gorgeous French lavender standards for just £19.99, or 25 per cent on traditional, highly fragrant English lavender 'Munstead' and 'Hidcote' (20 plants for just £14.99).

Unlock now