Sweet Peas (Lathyrus Odoratus) are beautifully flouncy climbers and gorgeously fragranced. Before the weather really warms up, there is still time to sew these pretty pea-like flowers!
They are easier than you'd think to grow at home, and with the weather warming up, sunny afternoons are ideal for these sun-loving blooms!
You don't even need seeding trays or small pots if you don't have them, you can re-use toilet roll tubes, they make a perfect little sowing pod
- Fill the cardboard tube with seed compost and plant a single Sweet Pea seed into it about 1 cm below the surface of the compost.
- Place the tubes on to a sowing tray or something similar and cover them with either cling film, a plastic bottle with the base cut off (if you just have one or two tubes) or a propagator lid. Keep them indoors for now!
- Keep the compost damp. When the seedlings begin to show through the compost, remove the cover and place them somewhere cool and frost free. Should your seedlings have a little too much warmth they will stretch and get leggy. Do not worry if this happens, pinch out the tops and this will encourage new tips to grow, creating a bushier plant.
- As the weather begins to warm up, start to harden off the seedlings by putting them outside during the day and bring them back into a cool frost-free area at night.
Once the last frosts have gone then they can be planted out either in the garden or into pots, traditional sweet peas love to climb, so always need some form of support whether that be canes, trellis or a wigwam.
If you planted them in toilet roll tubes, plant the whole thing, cardboard as well - sweet peas do not like to much root disturbance, so this is an ideal way to plant them!
Regularly cutting the flowers extends the flowering season so make the most of cutting them! They can be brought into the house to create a highly fragrant and attractive arrangement!
Tumbling & Trailing
Fancy trying something new with your Sweet Peas!? You can now plant some new varieties in hanging baskets and watch them grow down instead of upwards!
For a waterfall of sweet, scented blooms, try Suttons 'Sweetie' or 'Fragrant Tumbler' varieties. These are trailing varieties, perfectly suited for growing in hanging baskets, and just need regular feeding with a liquid fertiliser.