Buck the trend for hot sizzling summer colours and opt for cool pastels instead.
There are lots of little osteospermums in garden centres and nurseries in the summer months of May June and heaps of colour choice.I like them because they flower well into autumn and if we have a mild winter they should survive.
I use alot of marguerites in my planting arrangements because of there cottage garden looks.They flower well into autumn but are not as hardy as osteospermums.They have a great variety of colours to choose from to compliment the other flowers in your pot.
You can get some pale colours in petunias such as pale pink in the Surfinia series which is a very popular series that can be found in most garden centres.Also Mr Fothergill’s catalogue has a new series called Fanfare with a lovely pale pink flower called Appleblossom.
Each year I sow nicotiana seed but only single colours so I can co-ordinate my colour schemes.At this time of year May June look out for good sized plants at the garden centres. How to Plant Your pastels for Summer Pot
1. Drainage is really important in pots so start by lining the bottom with a number of broken crocks, or use pieces of broken up polystyrene.Then fill a third of the pot with container or multi purpose compost, breaking down any large lumps with your fingers as you work.
2. Because the marguerites, osteospermum and nicotiana all grow to about the same height, plant these towards the back of the pot.Depending on the size of your pot ,you might only need one of each plant.Place the petunias around the edge at the front and then firm everything in with more compost.
3. Now give the pot a good soak.Make sure you keep it well watered throughout the summer, especially over the first couple of weeks as the plants establish.To make sure you get the best blooms feed fortnightly with a liquid feed.Do not forget to deadhead regularly to keep the flowers coming.
More Pretty Pastels
Geraniums are so versatile and there are dozens of different colours available.Many people only consider the gaudy reds and oranges, but the softer pinks are lovely.They can be tricky from seed so try taking cuttings or buy plug plants.
Diascias have a long flowering period and if you can cut them back after the first flush of flowers, they should give you a repeat performance.They have become quite popular so they are widely available as young plants in lots of different colours.
Nemesia ia a cheap and cheerful filler often used to plug gaps in borders, but its also great in pots.It can flower from summer to christmas and is a spectacular sight.Look out for pale apricot and lemon colours.