Flower Power 2012

You may know that I don’t just grow veg in the Two Chances Plot, I am partial to some colour and dedicate a  bit of space to flowers either as companion planting to the veg or in their own bed.

I grow quite a few from seed and here’s the current stock list:

Swan River Daisy – Summer Skies

Sweet Pea – True Fragrance Mix & 20th Anniversary Mix (although I may not grow these again since I discovered I’m allergic to the cut flowers)

Sunflower – Harlequin F1 Hybrid, Giant & Russian Giant

Nicotiana Sylvestris

Aster Apollonia Appleblossom

Dwarf Candytuft – Fairy Mix

Rudbeckia – Marmalade

Alyssum – Golden Queen

Nasturtium – Jewel Mix

Pot and French Marigolds – which are my main companion plants and grown in bulk from seed to put in the greenhouse and around the plot.

And then there’s the Dahlia tubers which I stored overwinter last year (with some failures) but have left in the ground this year (under a thick mulch) to save time and space.   The Dahlia bed at the height of summer:

So what’s your most effective companion plant on the plot? And is there a flower(s) you just can’t do without in the garden?


15 responses to “Flower Power 2012

  1. I expect your Dahlias are doing OK in the mild weather conditions, Damo.
    I’m not much of a flower person myself, but one of the plants I always grow is the Geranium – and my favourites are the plain scarlet ones, because they remind me of warm places like the Med!

  2. I love having cut flowers in the house, but hate cutting flowers from the garden so I’ve tried a cutting patch at the allotment for the last couple of years without a lot of success. I’m hoping to give it another go this year. Let’s see how I do. I love dahlias, they put on such a show without having to give them too much tlc.

    • Mark – I hope so and I love geraniums too, I must grow some!

      Jo – hope you have some success this year. Dahlias are my favourite as you may have gathered!

  3. I’d have an allotment just for flowers, like your Dahlias! I love Nicotiana Sylvestris too, and have a couple which pop up every year, but you need a lot of space of which I can’t spare in my garden. I like growing trailing nasturtiums as they are great for covering any temporary unplanted areas. I’ve recently discovered Helenium, so that is the plant of which I couldn’t do without at this present time!

    PS. Happy New Year!

  4. You have some flowers on your list that I’ll be growing too. We love flowers on the allotment – we spend lots of time there so we want it to look good as well as to produce food and cut flowers.

    • Louise, Happy New Year and I’ve never grown Heleniums but am now tempted to give them a go.

      Sue, I think whilst an allotment needs to be a productive space there’s always room for some colour to brighten things up.

  5. Isobel McAllister

    Hi Damo and happy new year. Love your dahlias but in general I’m a sucker for scent so pinks, sweet peas, honeysuckle. roses etc. are high on my list. I always sow some eschsoltzia as well, the foliage is so pretty. Since we made an annual border I’ve noticed loads more ladybirds and hoverflies and I think they help keep my crops free from pests. Borage is also a must – not that I drink Pimms but the flowers are nice to nibble and they replace salts lost through dehydration.

    • Thanks Is and happy new year. I must grow some borage this year and you’re right the flowers do attract much more insects which can only be good in the battle against pests.

  6. Great post. I love flowers up at the allotment. I have 3 beds devoted to them for cutting but they brought in so many beneficial insects last year as well that I’m sure helped me manage the plot organically. I don’t really grow anything specifically as companion planting but I do try to grow flowers I know insects like such as blue cornflowers and Ammi majus. Both last well as cut flowers but were also covered in ladybirds and hoverflies last summer. I don’t tend to grow doubles because insects find these impossible to get to the nectar. I did read feverfew works well as an insect repellant so I thought I might give this a try around some particularly susceptible plants. Sarah Ravens website is great for flower power inspiration.

    • Thanks very much and forgot to add I have a patch of cornflowers as well that self seeds from one year to the next. They are great for insects.

  7. A good selection which will provide plenty of colour. As you know I’m a keen ‘flower power’ gardener so will be growing lots on the plot this year.
    I don’t worry about companion planting!
    As to your question I think that I’d choose pot marigolds and sunflowers.

  8. I noticed your earlier post about enjoying stats and thought you might like to add your garden to Folia the online gardening website (it’s free). It’s a fantastic way to see what you’ve grown, timelines, harvest tallies (though that may be a subscriber feature) and other things that stat lovers can enjoy.

    It’s a great resource for gardeners and has helped me keep on top of my 800+ plantings with photo’s, notes, journals, milestones etc. They have an extensive plant wiki and a seed stash section where people can also list seeds for swapping. Here’s the link to my Folia page so you can see how it works: http://www.myfolia.com/gardener/CDfolia/invite.

    • Good choices Flighty.

      Cally, my blog is listed on the Folia site although I haven’t done a great deal with it yet. From what I have seen so far it looks like a great resource.

  9. I posted this week about my flower seed delivery. It’s very exciting. I can’t believe you’re allergic to sweet peas.

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