Create a bed of hardy annuals for a splash of colour that costs pennies. It’s a great way to fill a patch of spare ground quickly and cheaply, as annuals grow quickly from seed, flower enthusiastically all summer then die out – leaving the space free for a redesign next year.
The bed can be any shape or size, but find a sunny spot to maximise flower power. Weed thoroughly, then fork over the soil and rake to create a level surface. Sow at any time from now onwards.
Mark out areas for each different variety, using silver sand trickled from a drinks bottle or horticultural spray paint – you’ll find both here at the garden centre. Good choices for sowing include California poppies, cornflowers, pot marigolds, clarkia and nigella, but there are loads of different seeds to choose from on the racks in our garden centre here in London. Just look for the words ‘hardy annual’ and choose the colours that you like best.
Create a bed of annual plants
Sow the seed in shallow drills and cover each row lightly with soil. Water in using a watering can with a rose to avoid washing the seeds out of place, and keep damp. You’ll have a fabulous display of flowers in about eight weeks’ time.