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Have you tried soaking them overnight before planting?
This year I'm being really ruthless with mine. Last year they were tall and lanky, so now I keep pinching them out after the first pair of leaves apear. Hoping this might make the stems a bit thicker, may not mind you but worth a try.
You don't neccessarily need a "super strain" of seed (but it helps). The pro's over here generally start off in September in a cold frame.When the peas are about 4" high (January) the growing shoot is pinched out so that a strong side shoot is selected. A good root run is needed as well so individual pots such as the inside of a loo roll are used.In Autumn a trench is dug and filled with as much good stuff as you can get your hands on and the poles put in in the spring. Sweet peas need a lot of water so most people add lots of newspaper to their trench. Plant out your peas individually about 8" apart in the row (complete with loo roll pot) and tie them to their string or stake. Snip off any tendrils that appear and continue to tie in until they are 4' high and then you untie the plant and lay it over at 45 degrees along the canes and tie it in again. This encourages more side shoots to grow . these then get tied in and laid over and more come along. All this time ,you are watering every day and feeding once per week with a tomato fertilizer. Dead head any blooms otherwise they will set seed and watch for slugs. If you are growing on a wigwam ,just wind the plants sideways like a helter skelter to achieve the same effect.- Easy ain't it? Rob.
Yes Rob that is how i grow my sweet-peas, i saw it in a gardening magazine 2 years ago,and as you say plenty of well rotted manure.I have so many bunches of sweetpeas in the summer that i can give to my work collegues and friends.
RaggedRobin, Thank you so much. I will try your method next year of planting them in September and using the 'loo roll' for protection against the dammed slugs. Here in BC we have weather almost like yours in Sussex.
Where is Lewes? I had two maiden aunts (dead now) who lived in Finden, Surrey near Worthing. Lovely area around there and I spent many happy years visiting them.
PS the best slug control I have found is crushed up egg shells scattered around my Hosta bed, that is the one bed those slimy creatures just love. Well I foiled them as now they get scratched to death. I do not find beer any good and is a waste of good beer!
Worthing is about 35 miles due West of us.If you follow the South Coast eastwards along to Brighton we are about 8 miles due East and inland a bit .We are on the 0 degrees Greenwich meridian and 50 miles due South of London -and it's raining yet again. One of Lewes's most famous sons was Tom Paine who formulated his thoughts into "The Rights of Man" which was the basis for the Constitution . Rob.
When the first edible box gets to me, I'll stick in some of my home grown sweet peas - DON'T EAT THEM! LOL Ihave incredible luck with these - they are large, floriferous and smell wonderfully. Here, we plant them on Good Friday - if the snow is off (hoping, hoping). They grow so well that even the milk haulers, not noted for their delicacy, comment on them.
Hi Gardendragon,I live in Southern California,and what I do is I buy my Seeds and bulbs around Thanksgiving (NOV) and I put them in my Garage Refrigerator for about 6 weeks to give them a pretend winter, it seems to work, and if I can get South African Bulbs they are much better for this climate, then I plant them outside,We don't usually have frost here so its safe,I plant my Tomatoes in March and I harvest from end of June thru oct...I pick the snails at nite with a Flashlite and a big bucket, when we lived in Texas we burned logs in the fireplace and the ash I put around my Tomatoes and Kept the snails and slugs away They couln't cross the ash...Hopes this Helps..Kind Thoughts Always Gerry...
All I know about Cornwall, is:
Cornish Pasties, Tin Mines, and Poldark books, which I love.
I was there once, I think, a friend, who lived in Oxford, drove me around, and remember faintly that the houses in Cornwall were a built out of lovely golden hued bricks.
Am I right? She also took me to Bath, which I consider the most beautiful town, absoletely breathtaking as you come into Bath to see the city set out in a circle, all stark white. I just loved Bath, unfortunately we were there on a Sunday, when nothing but pubs were open!
Yep, that about sums up cornwall, lol, dont think there are any tin mines working now though, they have progressd a bit down there lol, the cornish pastie, yep they do still make the best of them, and as for poldark, they can keep him, lol.
Never actualy been into bath, but its supposed to nice, and its still full of pubs open on sundays.
Ah, now I understand why, after many efforts to have Sweet Peas growing in my garden, not one flower has every appeared, not to mention the sorry sight of the poor stunted plants! Thank goodness I didn't plant all the seeds as I'll now soak the ones I have left for this season and follow your advice of plenty of compost, shredded paper (certainly have a lot of that) and attending to the position of the vining, ensuring it goes sideways! If anyone has had experience growing sweetpeas in rather tropical conditions, I'd love to hear what you did. I'm in zone 10, hot, hot, hot but I've created shade and dappled sun in the garden as an absolute requirement! Maybe a sheltered, dappled north might be better than the full blazing sun in the south of the house? Right now not one poor vine is longer higher than 12" and they've been in the hanging pot for at least 2 months! The seeds are from T&M so they should be of a good stock, I should imagine. Any help would be most appreciated. Thanks.
A pic of an Hedychium (ginger) since I have no photos of any sweet peas, alas!.