Sweet peas - Odorata 'sweet dreams'

For those of you who have received a packet of our sweet pea seeds, here is the info on how to grow -

Sweet peas need a little heat to get going – a warm windowsill is perfect. Aim to sow six to eight weeks before the last frost, so now is just about perfect. If you miss this, wait until at least mid-spring, when the soil warms up. Both are fine, but sow now and you'll pick earlier.

After a warm start, they need to be grown hard – try a cold frame, an unheated greenhouse or porch. Offer enough light so they can grow upright and strong, and that is that. Any sort of cosseting and you will get weak plants.

Soaking seed or nicking the seed coat can do more damage than good, so don't bother. Instead, concentrate on the pot. Sweet peas love a long root run. You can buy root trainers, which are hinged long plastic pots that fit into seed trays, or you can recycle: toilet roll tubes, newspaper folded into a pot, or a long food container.

 Once your seedlings have four true leaves, kick them out to cooler conditions. If you grow your seedlings hard, they tend to produce side shoots naturally. If you find yourself with leggy growth, nip out the top two leaves when you have four or more true leaves, to encourage bushy growth.

When the risk of frost has passed, they're ready to plant out: a sunny day in late March for those down south, sometime in April for those farther north. Add a generous helping of homemade compost or well-rotted manure to the planting hole – the trick is to get those roots running as deep as possible – then mulch to retain moisture and save on watering.

Then the trick is too pick daily, this will encourage new flowers and also ensure you have fresh fragrant flowers in your house daily. 

A small glass jam jar will do and can be a lovely job for the kids.

Feb 2012 - 

Kate was delighted to start the new year by being selected as a finalist for the Brand Amplifier female entrepreneur award. A brilliant initiative set up by Jeannette Pritchard of JP Creative. It has made us reevaluate what we are doing, why we are doing it and where we can go with the brand of Tom and Amelia and provided a rich network of other positive and professional women.

She was thrilled to receive the gold prize.

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