Last week managed to wrestle some of the nettles and docks out of the plot and onto the bonfire heap along with the mostly dried out sweetpeas, some still waving last weak flowers at the top of their supports. Weeded around the dahlias and tried not to be too despondent about the ravage of their leaves by slugs. Bought some organically approved slug pellets and scattered them thinly about. Then there was some more brutal removal of healthy plants of hesperis and moth mullein. Resisted turfing out the achillea as the insects love it, but that and the knautia will be transferred away from plot when there is time and energy.
One of the things I have learned this year is that I need to plan and prepare more carefully. Last year the plot became too much an overflow for plants I didn’t sell at the market (like the different and lovely shades of pink of the Higgledy Garden knautia), but these weren’t necessarily the plants best for producing cut flowers and took up quite a lot of space. So as mentioned before, next year will I focus on a narrower range. The mainstays will be cornflowers, love in a mist, larkspur, dahlias and sweetpeas. And of course, there will be others like sunflowers and scabious, but will try not to do as much random and at a whim planting as last year. If I do, will try and keep it to the allotment and garden. Still not decided for or against roses at the plot.
So the cycle begins again preparing for next Spring. Slowly bulbs are going into pots and into the ground. Cornflower and larkspur seeds have germinated and sweetpeas have just been sown in root trainers. Packets of mixed colours and varieties first and in a couple of weeks varieties just ordered such as ‘King Edward VII’, ‘Albutt Blue’ and ‘High Scent’ – all recommended in a recent trial of Gardening Which. October & January are my planting months for Sweetpeas and probably next Spring for anymore hardy annuals.