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Get the best out of your sweet peas

imageHow to grow beautiful, long-lasting sweet peas without too much hard work .

I have always thought that sweet peas are hard work. An expert exhibitor once told me that he dug his trenches 4ft deep before planting, and that non-stop deadheading was essential. To me, the frenzy of pink froth did not seem to justify all this effort.

A couple of years ago, however, I decided that I really should try again; we are frequently asked about sweet peas on Gardeners’ Question Time and I loathe giving theoretical answers.

I am not a fan of deep digging, and the soil depth in my garden is 50mm before it hits limestone brash. I wanted pyramids of sweet peas beside a yew hedge, and I knew this patch would be full of yew roots and dry as dust. Instead, I put three mini plants in a chimney pot, full of rich compost, directly on the soil, and gave them two gallons of water each, once a week.

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