I am bursting with my enthusiasm for sweet peas. For me they capture the essence of summer. The fragrance is beautiful. The colours are just wonderful with dusty pinks and purples, reds, deep maroon and white. They produce an abundance of flowers to fill the house with the scent of Summer for weeks on end.
I have been cutting mine on average three times a week for five weeks now and still they come! That's one of the wonderful things about them, as the more you cut them the more flowers they produce.
Each time I cut them I am filling at least two vases and I’ve given several bunches to friends who've loved them.
They are very easy to grow. You just need decent support for the plants which can grow to about 6 foot.
For the last two years I have bought small plants in the spring but this year I grew them from seed so I feel extra proud of the results.
I planted the seeds in the greenhouse in November and they lived through a cold winter in there. Then I planted them into the garden in March. More plants germinated than I needed, so I could use the strongest ones. I used bamboo as a 'wigwam' support, just as you might with runner beans. Like any small plants they do need to be watered regularly to help them establish. They look rather weedy to start with and then suddenly they kick off and really start to grow. You do need to tie them in a bit as they grow or they tend to collapse.
One of my seed packets was free with a magazine and the other pack was about £2.50 from the garden centre. I can't think of very much else that could give such incredible pleasure and great value for that money.
So go on - choose and buy some Sweet Pea seeds now, for a beautiful and fragrant Summer 2013. I promise you won't be sorry.
Minnie Moll, Marketing Director at Notcutts