Monty Don gives tips on planting pumpkins
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Lupins are a timeless classic, most loved for their brightly coloured blooms and uniquely-tall stems. These hardy flowers are both varied and easy to grow, though planting them at the right time is essential to secure a statement display in summer. According to gardening experts, these “sun worshipers” will struggle to thrive without the right care – so when exactly is the best time to plant lupin seeds?
When to plant lupin seeds
Whether you’ve saved seeds from existing lupin plants or have a fresh seed packet ready to sow, there is still time to plant them this month.
According to Horticulture Magazine, lupins can be sown in a seed tray between February to September, but no later.
Once sown, the seedlings should sit in a greenhouse or on a sunny windowsill to give them the “best chance of survival”.
Though there is some flexibility on planting times, lupins will “do best” when sown in early March.
After sowing, the flower seeds should be hardened-off outdoors in their containers throughout April and transplanted into the ground a month later.
No matter what time of year you choose to sow the flowers, preparing the seeds is worthwhile to improve the eventual display in your garden.
To do this, gardening experts recommended soaking the seeds for 24 hours in a small amount of water.
Getting your lupin seeds off to a good start depends on their positioning indoors.
Once the seed tray is full, place the young lupins in a warm greenhouse or on a sunny windowsill to grow.
In a few weeks, the plants will produce four leaves to signal that they are ready to be moved outdoors.
Soaking the seeds before sowing will speed up this process for an even earlier start on your lupin display.
When to plant out September-sown lupins
If you decide to plant lupins this month, you won’t have to wait too long to plant them out.
While the pea-shaped flowers don’t appear until June, the hardy plant will do fine outdoors during winter.
Plant the seedlings into 9cm pots once each one sprouts four leaves.
After the plants have rooted, move the lupins to their final planting position in the ground and water in.
West Country Nurseries said: “Lupins do not come true to seed so yours will be a lovely rainbow mix of colours.”
Where to plant lupins outside
These classic flowers are known to thrive under the sun, but according to Horticulture Magazine, they also “enjoy cool soil”.
To get the balance right, choose a site where the flowers will get full morning sun and shade in the afternoon.
The experts warned against transplanting seedlings into shaded patches of ground as they “won’t thrive”.
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