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Planting out smallish plants now?

I’ve been growing these plants from plugs/seeds, and am not sure whether I should plant them in the borders now or keep them in the cold frame until spring.

The lavenders have been growing from tiny plugs I received in late winter, the lupins and salvias I’ve grown from seed sown in early summer. They all seem to have decent root systems without being pot bound, but I don’t want them to just die over winter if I plant them out... The lupins especially seem to be pretty healthy, still putting out new leaves.

Any advice appreciated!


  • Hostafan1Hostafan1 Posts: 34,049
    I'd say a little bit of TLC over the winter will pay dividends next year.
  • BorderlineBorderline Posts: 4,699
    I would not plant any of those plants out. They need to be much more bigger than that. Keep them in your cold frame and make sure you keep the doors/lids opened up on very sunny days. Others may have different opinions.
  • I would agree - keep them warm. We had such a harsh winter even here in London, that I lost established plants which had previously survived every winter.
    The lavenders in particular won't appreciate the combination of wet and cold and are also titchy still. 
    Whereabouts are you?

  • I'm in Liverpool near the river, so it's pretty wet and windy over winter. Shouldn't be too cold I don't think, but you never know!

    I'll definitely take the consensus advice though - I have a reasonable cold frame, so will keep them in there over winter. Was hoping to use the space for other things - may get a little cramped!

    Thank you  :)
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,121
    It looks like you have them in shelter so definitely not a good idea to move them outside now.  Cold frame is the next stage and will get them hardened off but allow protection when it's nasty and then they can go out next spring.  Be aware that slimesters love new shoots and especially lupins so take precautions.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • The lupins are in the cold frame at the moment, but it's been left wide open all summer. The others aren't actually in shelter. Will a (closed) cold frame be enough protection over winter? Maybe with a bit of extra insulation (e.g. newspaper?) if it gets very cold?

    And don't worry, I'm well aware of slimesters love for lupins - lost quite a few plants to them in my previous garden when I was first beginning to grow things! This is a brand new garden, just a lawn when we moved in last Christmas, so the slug/snail population isn't huge yet. Definitely growing though...
  • LynLyn Posts: 21,882
    I wouldn’t plant any of those out until next April.  3 pieces of slug pellet in each pot will keep your lupins going. No need to ‘blue’ the compost,  but the Salvias and lupins will get eaten. 😱😀
    The cold frame will be ok, you could open the lid a crack on fine days. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • Thank you all!
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