A traditional cottage garden favourite. Tall and stately with large, cup-shaped open flowers in pastel colours.
Sow indoors for surest results, March-May, 1.5cm (½”) deep, in a tray of compost. Water well and place in a cold frame, unheated greenhouse, or on a warm kitchen windowsill. Keep moist. Seedlings usually appear in 21-28 days. Transplant individually, when large enough to handle, to 7.5cm (3″) pots. Always hold by a leaf, never by the stem. Gradually accustom young plants to outside conditions, before planting out into well-drained soil, June-October, 60cm (2′) apart. Or, sow outdoors, May-July, in a seed bed, 0.5cm (¼”) deep, into finely-prepared, well-drained soil, which has already been watered. Thin seedlings to 7.5cm (3″) apart, before planting out to flowering position in autumn. Flowers: June-August, the following year.
Tip:In cold areas, the young plants will benefit from some cloche protection in the worst of the winter weather.