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Pale-blue, feathery love-in-a-mist

Flowers to sow in September

September is a great time to sow annuals for flowers next year - here are five that you can try.

A table displaying which months are best to sow, plant and harvest.
Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec

Do not Sow in January

Do not Sow in February

Do not Sow in March

Do not Sow in April

Do not Sow in May

Do not Sow in June

Do not Sow in July

Do not Sow in August

Do Sow in September

Do not Sow in October

Do not Sow in November

Do not Sow in December

September is the ideal time to sow hardy annuals for spring flowers the following year. The seeds can also be sown in spring, but sowing in autumn often results in earlier flowers and more robust plants.


Sowing hardy annuals is easy – either sow in rows, or broadcast the seed on a prepared seedbed. Find out how to sow hardy annuals outside.

Related content:

Here are five hardy annuals to sow in September.

Sowing in autumn often results in earlier flowers and more robust plants.

English marigold (Calendula officinalis)

Orange English marigolds
Orange English marigolds

English marigold has deep orange petals, which are perfect for a hot border or for cutting. It’s very easy to grow – from an autumn sowing it should flower from May. Allow some seedheads to dry so that you save the seed; it may also self seed, without becoming a nuisance.

Buy Calendula officinalis at Crocus for £2.49

Love-in-a-mist (Nigella damascena)

Pale-blue, feathery love-in-a-mist
Pale-blue, feathery love-in-a-mist

Nigella damascene (love-in-a-mist) is a cottage garden favourite and makes a lovely cut flower. Its dried seedheads are attractive, too.

Buy Nigella damascena at Crocus for £2.49


Blue cornflowers
Blue cornflowers

Centaurea cyanus often forms part of pictorial and annual meadow schemes, and makes an excellent cut flower. The blue-flowered variety is the most commonly grown, but different cultivars may have red, pink, white and dark purple flowers.

Buy Centaurea cyanus at YouGarden for £2.99

Queen Anne’s lace (Ammi majus)

White flowerhead of Queen Anne's lace
White flowerhead of Queen Anne’s lace

Ammi majus is best sown in autumn, resulting in bigger, better flowers in early summer. It bears clouds of cow-parsley like blooms and is perfect for cutting.

Buy Ammi majus at Crocus for £2.79


Mauve poppy
Mauve poppy

Opium poppy (Papaver somniferum, pictured), field poppy (Papaver rhoeas) and ladybird poppy (Papaver commutatum) can all be sown in autumn.

Buy Papaver rhoeas at Crocus for £3.29

California poppy

Orange Californian poppies
Orange Californian poppies

California poppy (Eschscholzia californica) brings swathes of bright orange-yellow to borders and self-seeds readily, so once sown, you will enjoy them every year. Discover how to sow Californian poppy.


Buy Eschscholzia californica at Crocus for £2.49

Sowing green manure

Autumn is also an ideal time to sow green manures, which protect bare beds from winter rains that can wash away nutrients and break down soil structure. Find out how to sow green manure.

Garden rake