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Lupin growing advice needed

Outdoor girlOutdoor girl Posts: 286

My neighbours have some lovely lupins (yes - I have neighbour envy...)  and I fancy some in my garden too but I always thought they were difficult to grow. However, I know the neighbours are leave alone gardeners! so perhaps I could with a little advice from someone here.  My soil is flinty, chalky & free draining.

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  • punkdocpunkdoc Sheffield, Derbyshire border.Posts: 11,344

    Lupins are easy to grow. Just keep them moist and add some muck / comost to planting hole.

    You can also produce more easily from seed or cuttings.

    The only drawback is slugs and snails are very fond of them.

    He calls her the chocolate girl
    Cause he thinks she melts when he touches her
    She knows she's the chocolate girl
    Cause she's broken up and swallowed
    And wrapped in bits of silver
  • BookertooBookertoo Posts: 1,306

     ............not only slugs and snails, but the dreaded lupin aphid.  If your area does not have these, then go for it - they are lovely plants.  I used to grow them until the lupin aphid reached here (east midlands).  The aphids are huge, grey and disgusting, and the birds ignore them - they lay waste to lupins in avery short time.  I tried a tree lupin but they liked that just as much.  I no longer grow lupins, but love to see them where they are well grown. 

  • Outdoor girlOutdoor girl Posts: 286

    Thanks for that - not many pests then...! Off to GC this afternoon!

  • JengilJengil Posts: 35

    Lupins like a free draining, not too rich soil and don't do well in very chalky soil.

  • biofreakbiofreak Posts: 964

    re Lupin Aphid - Try diluted Black Soap (from Marseilles) (dilute as washing up liquid) works immediately. OR use your ladybirds - just pop one on a bud (preferably with an aphid within reach) and wallop your ladybird will be in heaven and call all her chums over.

    Re: Growing - Plant really well grown plants as opposed to seedlings and you stand a much better chance of success.

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,404

    I'd agree with biofreak- the sturdier the plant the more chance of success. If your neighbours are growing them easily you should be ok re conditions. you could always ask if they do anything specific too. We usually have wet springs up here so the slugs go mad for them but many years ago  when I had my first proper garden I had huge probs with greenfly so didn't really bother with them after that. I grow my plants 'hard' so that they can stand on their own feet - so to speak! Having a good supply of predators in your garden is a great benefit too- get some feeders out first and get the birds in!

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • [Deleted User][Deleted User] Posts: 3,277
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  • One tip i was given was to not cut the leaves off in autumn, and leave them for the winter. Then remove them in spring to tidy them up. The theory is that the hollow steams if you cut them down make a tunnel for the cold to go straight down into the plant, so best to leave the leaves on to protect the plant over winter.

  • biofreakbiofreak Posts: 964

    I agree with that unless you like providing nests for earwigs and woodlice!!

  • donutsmrsdonutsmrs Posts: 479

    I have Lupins and find them very easy to grow. They come back every year and just look so beautiful.

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