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Post new topic   Reply to topic    Irish Gardeners Forum Home -> Container gardening in Ireland, including Annual Bedding Plants

Popular uses for colourful bedding plants.

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James Kilkelly
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Joined: 30 May 2006
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2007 7:17 pm    Post subject: Popular uses for colourful bedding plants. Reply with quote

Popular uses for colourful bedding plants.

Wow, we have had great weed growing weather recently. It has really been amazing in the last two weeks how once bare areas of soil have been colonised by germinating weeds, this weed growth is a sure sign that the soil has warmed up.
You should take advantage of this warm soil now, by planting some summer bedding into it. Bedding planted over the next few weeks should be safe from frosts unlike many earlier plantings. Your local garden centre will surely have numerous and diverse varieties of summer bedding plants available to you, which can be used in multiple ways within your garden.

Busy-Lizzy) Impatiens walleriana, photo / pic / image.

Try some of the following planting ideas...

(1) Create a bed solely for a massed bedding display. While some people may view this as old fashioned, it still creates a great impact.

(2) Use bedding to fill gaps within your beds or borders or to add a splash of colour. Existing plantings that are foliage based rather than flower based will really benefit from this. Remember bedding plants that are planted in close proximity to established plants will require much more watering than bedding on its own. In a plants struggle for water, the older plant usually has the upper hand.

(3) Many of you gardeners can also fill window boxes and hanging baskets with the lush foliage and terrific blooms of the summer bedding plant. Vertical bedding has also become very popular in the last few years, this planting method requires you to use a special created hanging grow bag. Bedding is pocket planted through holes in the bag; these then grow eventually obscuring the bag with foliage and flower.

As we have crossed the sowing threshold of the bedding season, we will now have to use container-grown bedding instead of starting from seed. The garden centres are literally awash with individual pots or multi-packs of summer bedding that will provide colour right up until October.
For colour in a sunny area, choose ...
Ageratum (floss flower), Alyssum,
Antirrhinum (snapdragon),
Dwarf Fuchsia,
Tagetes (marigold),
Mimulus (Monkey flower),
Coleus (flame nettle),
Nicotiana (tobacco plant),
Viola (pansy),
Pelargonium (bedding geranium),
Salvia (bedding sage)
and Verbena.

For colour in a troublesome shady area choose Begonia or Impatiens (busy lizzie), these will also perform well in sun once their moisture needs are looked after. My particular favourite of the busy lizzies has to be the New Guinea hybrids; they are really robust and very showy both in and out of flower, due to their colourful foliage.
All the bedding plants already mentioned require a non-waterlogged soil that is quite rich in organic matter; this can be attained by the addition of well-rotted compost or a garden centre bought soil enricher. Ensure that your bedding plants are kept well watered; as they are always very thirsty due to shallow roots inability to reach deep into the soil for moisture.

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