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seeds or seedlings

I've a very large garden and need to do a very large amount of planting - for a new perennial border and flowers to cover about 150m of soil that's a 6ft x 6ft berm around the edge. I've plenty of seeds (usual stuff cosmos, hollyhocks, phlox, etc. and some wildflower seeds). I've a couple of propagators and greenhouses but would it sensible to sow seed direct where I want the flowers or am I better off growing seedlings and planting out. I also have all my veg seeds to do so seedlings will take a lot of time with potting on etc but I don't want to sow direct if I'm not going to get results. Any advice or ideas?


  • If the soil's good and finely prepared direct sowing will be fine for lots of things. Hollyhocks probably wouldn't flower til next year though. Take care to manage pests that will eat young plants too. I would plant some shrubs too.

  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 21,649

    Sow hardy annuals direct. Most others will need more warmth and care to get them going. Perennials are best potted on a couple of times until they are a decent sized plant or they are slug bait.

    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • Thanks Charliebot - I've a couple of Viburnum already gone in and always looking for a bargain. Rabbits are the biggest problem at the moment - they'll destroy anything.

    Busy-Lizzie - that's very helpful, that will cut down a load of work.  

  • If you are looking for perennial plants, it is always worth asking for plants on Freecycle or Freegle.  I used to put loads of plants on Freecycle from my cottage garden and they were snapped up.  If you have a local group of the Cottage Garden Society or any other local gardening group, people are always very generous when splitting plants, so you can fill a garden for practically nothing, with little effort and they will flower in the same year. 

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