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Author Topic: Flowers and things - advice needed  (Read 5037 times)


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Muiravonside, near Linlithgow
Flowers and things - advice needed
« on: March 04, 2009, 09:20:04 am »

I've decided to add some flowers to my garden - mainly to attract bees and bugs and things, but it'll brighten the place up a bit - plus i've jsut built far too many raised beds to meet my own food needs (i am toying with the idea of selling the surplus, but i don't think my expertise is quite ready for commercial enterprise yet!)

anyway, I don't know ANYTHING about plants - the terms annual, perennial etc mean nothign to me.

what i'd like to do is plant a selection of different flowers that will all bloom (i believe that's teh expression) at slightly different times from spring right through to late autumn - so i have colour all summer.

I'm also looking for short/medium/tall plants - as i want some ot the front of the beds, some at the back of the beds and some will also climb up my fence.

so any suggestions at nice, low maintenance flowers broken down by month and height.

Oh, and if i can plant once and forget about them or do i need to replace each year

if we are being honest here, daffodils would be perfect as they seem to pop up, die away every year, no hassle!! but they don't last long enough.

I know i'm being lazy but their ain't enough hours in the day to figure out this whole new aspect to gardening - whilst holding down my job and growing the veg and everythign else that goes on!

thanks in advance!


  • Joined Aug 2012
  • Clackmannanshire
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Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2009, 12:38:40 pm »
Linz is an expert - she'll help, but basically look at the packets and see what the full grown height and spread will be, they should also say when they flower.  Perennial means they come up every year. You can sell bunches of daffodils at the gate - just tie them in bunches, put in a bucket of water and leave an honesty box. I do that with my eggs.  Gladioli are good for that too but might need staking.  Use stuff like ajuga and lamium as ground cover - pretty flowers and keeps weeds down although some people say they are weeds too. You could spend and evening scouring books but the labels have the info anyway.
Always have been, always will be, a WYSIWYG - black is black, white is white - no grey in my life! But I'm mellowing in my old age


  • Guest
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2009, 05:16:49 pm »
It really depends on whether you want just a bed full of flowers (for cutting & selling perhaps?) or a 'proper' garden bed. By that, I mean one with mixed planting that'll still have stuff in it over winter.
I'm by no means an expert but if it's purely flowers you'll probably have more maintenence & attention needed, but if it's a mixed bed a lot of the stuff will be hassle free with only a wee trim needed now and then.
If you let me know which one you prefer I'll try to get you a list of plants from some of my (many) books  ;D


  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Barry, Angus, Scotland
    • The Accidental Smallholder
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2009, 08:12:21 pm »
Plant some lavender. It's a perennial - ie is there for a number of seasons; it's got quite attractive scented foliage all year; the flowers are beautiful, scented and the bees and butterflies love them; you can harvest the flower stems and sell them (wee bunches in Dobbies last year were £3.99!!) and they only need a trim after flowering.

I love lavender and planted a hedge last year.

Sedum spectabile Autumn Joy - perennial; red flowers, bees and butterflies love it and it flowers well into the back end of the year. Dies back in winter - in spring, cut off all the dead stuff and you'll see the new growth coming through.

The loveliest bed I ever planted was a scattering of of a mixed annual mix that I bought in teh supermarket. There's aphoto on the diary somehwere if I can find it. The colours were fabulous. Of course, it all seeded like mad and I'm still getting poppies coming up all over the place.


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Muiravonside, near Linlithgow
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2009, 08:58:33 pm »
i'm already planting some lavender, but i've go that in the bit of garden beside the rosemary/thyme and mint.

HH, i'm looking for something that'll give me a wee burst of colour all spring/summer/autumn when i'm likely to be spendinging leisure time in the garden

I do have an area of the garden that has more ground cover type plants, but not enough colour.

i've just built a big fence all the way around teh garden and i've built loads of planters for the garden, ideally i'd like to have a burst of one colourtype then have it replaced by something else coming into bloom a few weeks/months later

it is to serve teh dual purpose of bringing insects and birds to the garden and some colour

no plans to start selling them or anything like that


  • Joined Jan 2009
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Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #5 on: March 05, 2009, 09:10:31 am »
I always clear a small part of the front garden and throw in a handful of mixed annuals seeds. You can get special packets for bees and other beneficial insects, containing cornflowers and calendula. I also have some peonies and climbing clematis, which are both relatively low-maintenance, as I need the time in the garden for the veg plot. :&>


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Muiravonside, near Linlithgow
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #6 on: March 05, 2009, 10:17:12 am »
there is a great clematis (so i'm told) in my garden, it has gone through 2/3 different colour flowers over the course of spring/summer/autum

it's all died back a bit now, i've no idea if i need to prune it, or do anything to it.

i'd be keen on getting a few of them around the fence!

like the idea of a "bee mix" flower pack

I'm off down to the garden centre this weekend and will just look at the pictures and see when they need planted/when they bloom and make my pick.

I can see me sitting down on the middle of the shop with lots of packs spread out in front of me - making little bundles, and shuffling them all around!!


  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Near Stirling, Central Scotland
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #7 on: March 05, 2009, 11:33:48 am »
lol am no expert, just read a lot of books about different random stuff lol
anyway  the best way to find what will grow in your area is if you have neighbour see what they grow.
cut Herb/herb plants are good to sell at the  gate,
Also try next time your near a florist check to see what native flowers they have this will depends on the seasons.

many of the flowers already suggested, i have a couple of packet of seads here (well lots but the ones I am looking are) a country cottage collection, Annual (annual means grow one year and set seeds and will drop on the floor for the next seasons) cottage garden choice mixture.i so have a packet of biannuals (biannuals mean grow over two years and set seed in second year) and a packets of mix perennials.

But don't forget if you remove all the flowers you are removing the way that some plants reproduces.
sweetpeas, pink, whites, chrisathmums are quite easy to grow and can be left alone if in the correct place in the garden.



  • Guest
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #8 on: March 05, 2009, 05:15:50 pm »
Hi Sellickbhoy,

Okay, here goes, apologies in advance for the length of this post :

Good for birds -

Berried plants (obviously) and climbing ivies (provide berries and hidden net areas) honeysuckle (good for beasties too) and sunflowers (grow from seed) - I'm sure there are MANY more. Nest boxes placed around the garden should encourage them in too.

Good for butterflies & Beasties -

(in order of flowering)
Polyanthus, Aubretia, Wallflower, Cuckoo flower *(native wild flower), Honesty, Sweet rocket, Bugle*, Ragged robin*, Sweet William, Corn Marigold*, Sainfoin*, Lavender, Phlox, Marjoram*, Globe thistle, Fleabane*, Helichrysum, Verbena, Buddleia, Dahlia, Michaelmas daisy. (Just to get you started lol!) And nettles, my major enemy, but REALLY good so I always leave a wee patch hidden out of sight.

Specifics for bees - Borage, foxglove, globe thistle, Knapweed, Lungwort, Marjoram, Poppies (especially the opium poppy  :o) Red clover, Sage & Teasle

General year round colour - the list for this could be endless !!! It's really a case of what you like, but a few suggestions (bulbs, tubers and corms especially for easy maintenance)-

Spring - Daffodills, narcissus, snow drops, crocus, tulips. All bulbs that will sprout year after year without needing much attention and come in various sizes from dwarf to some really quite tall daff's & tulips.

Summer - Lillies, Fritillaria's, allium, iris, dahlia, gladioli, tulip, cyclamen (again bulbs, and a range of different heights available)

Autumn - Amaryllis (bulb), African daisy(seed), Borage(seed), Autumn crocus (bulb) Cosmos (tubers) - I have these and can really vouch for them - beautiful to look at and the beasties love them. Cyclamen (tubers)

I'm going to stop there as my fingers are getting numb - I dare say your head is pickled with all that info  ;D  ;D  ;D

Here's some shopping links

Good luck and post some piccies to show us how good it looks once done ! ;)


  • Joined Oct 2007
  • Near Stirling, Central Scotland
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2009, 05:38:51 pm »
btw lidls have shrubs and climbs in, 12th march


  • Joined Jan 2009
  • Muiravonside, near Linlithgow
Re: Flowers and things - advice needed
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2009, 10:20:20 pm »
woohoo, thanks :)

i've got some sunflowers, the normal yellow ones and the slightly smaller red ones

i also got a selection of marigolds too as they are supposed to be good companion plants for a few things

i seen a mixed poppy collection, so i'll go for that

i love snowdrops and blue bells, so they are in, and i was given some tulip bulbs wen a friend ahd visited holland. so i'd forgotten about them!

that's a START!!



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