How to sow seeds direct into pots

Do it:

Mar, Apr

Takes just:

30 minutes

At its best:

Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep

Growing flowers from seed is a great way of saving money, and summer planting doesn’t get easier than this. You can sow most half-hardy and hardy annuals straight into the container in late March (delay until April if the weather stays cold) - the first shoots often appear within days, with flowers from early June right through until October.

Place the container in full sun where your summer annuals can soak up the warmth, and get enough light to open their petals.

You will need


Flower seeds

Good quality multipurpose compost

Seed compost





Place a couple of crocks in the base of your pot to aid drainage. Fill the pot with a good quality, peat-free multipurpose compost, topping off with a 3cm layer of seed compost. Water the compost thoroughly and allow to drain.

Using vermiculite or sand, divide the surface into thirds. Sow three types of seed - one in each section, spacing them at 5cm intervals. 

Cover the surface with a fine layer of vermiculite.

Protect the seeds with a cloche until they have germinated. Thin overcrowded seedlings to 10cm, by gently prising them out using a pencil. Firm in the rest.


Discover more ideas and inspiration

Related content

10 half hardy annuals to grow

How to sow half-hardy annuals

How do I stop seedlings damping off?

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