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Sowing annuals

Annual flowers are among the easiest plants you can grow. They're ideal for filling gaps, or simply for producing a dazzling display of colour from summer to the first frosts. There's a great choice of annuals in our garden centre in Poynings. But how and when do you sow these plants?


Half-hardy annuals cannot cope with the frost. Therefore, you first need to sow them into pots inside, to be planted outdoors later. Here is how to get perfect results:

  • fill trays with seed compost: you will find the equipment you need in our garden centre;
  • place in a shallow bowl of water to soak up moisture from the bottom;
  • sow seeds sparingly and cover lightly with vermiculite or more compost;
  • pot on seedlings as they grow;
  • water well after transplanting and keep the pots in a warm place. Still, make sure they are not exposed to direct sunlight;
  • plant outside after the last frost has passed.


Hardy annuals are easier to take care of, since they can be sown outside directly. It is best to sow them from March on. Even though hardies can be sown straight into the garden, there are a couple of things you need to think of:

  • weed the bed and rake the whole site level. Water if necessary;
  • mark areas for each type of seed, dividing the bed into irregular sections;
  • make drills of ½ cm deep within each section to identify your seedlings as they come up in lines;
  • sow sparingly into each drill, cover lightly with soil and water.


Sowing annuals is not as difficult as it looks like. With a couple of simple tips, you will get to work in no time. Do you want some more advice on the difference between hardies and half-hardies? Or about the best spot in your garden to sow your annuals? Come visit our garden centre in Poynings and ask our staff, because they are more than happy to help you! What’s more, you will find plenty of annual plants that will make your garden into an even more beautiful place. Visit us in Sussex and be amazed!

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