Growing Flowers

Flowers are a category of plants that flower at some point during the year. They're widely used in gardens, where there are many varieties available in varying colours and sizes. This article goes through everything you need to know about growing them.

When to plant flowers

There are two general ways to plant flowers, by planting seeds or partly grown transplants. You can get most flowers in both forms, where a transplant is a seed at a later stage in its growth.

Flower seeds are generally the cheaper option and can be more rewarding, as you grow them from an earlier stage. But they take longer to grow and are generally more work and it's harder to get them to flourish. You might buy a packet of seeds and plant them during the winter.

Flower transplants are more expensive, but as they're already partly grown, they take less time to flower than a seed grown for the same plant. You might plant them during spring, where you'd wait until it starts to warm up before planting them.

Each flower has its own ideal conditions and growth periods. The packet/label for a flower will often have information on this, so can be useful when selecting flowers to plant.

Varieties of flowers

There's a wide range of flowers available, where a particular flower would have a certain name and there might be many different varieties of it in varying colours and sizes.

This is most noticeable when you grow flowers from seeds, where you might get a range of different colours, sizes, foliage, etc. Flower transplants often have a more limited range, so seeds might be a good option if you want a specific flower variety.

Flowers are also often split into categories such as perennials, annuals and biennials.

Where to plant flowers

Flowers can look quite different at different parts of the year, so when selecting them you should consider this and perhaps select a range of annuals and perennials. We'll give some examples where you might use them in your garden.

Wherever you plant them, make sure you've checked if the flower prefers a lot of sun, a partly shaded area or a fully shaded area, or they might die/not grow well.

Flower beds

A flower bed is a part of a garden where many flowers are planted in a particular arrangement. The bed might be at ground level or perhaps raised, and the top layer may be dirt or a material like wood chips.

The flowers used might all be the same variety or a range of different colours/sizes, perhaps with a range of annuals/perennials, varying heights and flowering periods to add variety and depth. Other plants such as ornamental grasses can also be used alongside flowers.

Cutting back flowers

For many flowers, when the flower parts of an annual/perennial plant start to fade, the flower part can be cut off in a process called deadheading to allow new flowers to grow in its place. You might also remove any nearby weeds and/or cut off any foliage on the plant that looks like it's losing its colour. Be careful not to cut yourself on any tools you use.

Not all flowers need deadheading, where the flower may fall off by itself and new flowers would then grow in its place. Generally, you'd deadhead a flower when it looks like it's starting to die/lose its colour and you'd cut it back as close as you can to where the stem meets the flower.