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When to plant 'roots' ?

I bought two geraniums (roots) and a pink Astrantia in Wilko about a week ago. I used to have the blue & white geranium in my previous property and hadn't seen them on sale anywhere until now. I have a creamy white Astrantia and wanted a pink one so thought I'd buy it while it was available - I don't buy the majority of my plants in Wilko, by the way!  My question is, when can I plant them out?  They are in cellophane packets in compost (the geraniums have thin shoots showing) and the instructions say plant asap after purchase and then, in another part 'in early Spring.' CONFUSED!  I live near the south coast but have had a few frosts here lately. I don't have a greenhouse but I have some Fuschia and Pelargonium cuttings and Irises coming on well in my brick shed, which has large windows. 

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  • BobTheGardenerBobTheGardener Leicestershire, UKPosts: 8,354

    Lyn, best to plant them into pots for now.  They are completely hardy so the pots could go somewhere sheltered outside for now, for example by the side of a wall where they won't get soaking wet - too much water is bad for bare root plants when first planted.  You can then transfer them from the pots into the ground in spring by which time the first leaves should be showing.

    However, if your soil is free-draining and isn't waterlogged (like it is for many of the rest of us at the moment!) you can plant them straight out into your borders as long as the ground isn't frozen.

    Whatever you decide, get them into soil/compost immediately as they will quickly shrivel and die or rot if left in the packets.

    A trowel in the hand is worth a thousand lost under a bush.
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