In this edition of Gardners World, Monty Don turns his attention to the annual climbers he has been growing from seed as well as planting out sweet peas. He also gives his recommendations on perennial plants which can be grown from seed now for late summer colour. 

They also visit a small jungle garden in Runcorn that is bursting with colour that defies the UK’s unpredictable climate, and we meet a couple from Norfolk who transformed an uninteresting space into a garden full of tropical plants enhanced by scrap metal objects washed up on the nearby coastline. 

Sweat Peas

The programme stars with Monty planting out his sweet peas. He planted them in January, February and March so he would et succession flowering through the summer.

Monty grows them up bean sticks which are 8ft tall, well sunk into the garden so they won’t blow over.

If you haven’t already, pinch out the shoots as this will encourage them to bush up and develop side shoots.

Sweat peas like mild damp conditions, so keep them well watered. If it’s too hot and dry they won’t like it at all. Give them a good weekly soak.

Suil Na Mara Bacton, Norfolk

Bev and Bill Kerr have 225 varieties of plants in their North Norfolk garden which is a few minutes from the coast on sandy free draining soil. Many of the plants are exotic and thrive in these conditions.

Agave americana ‘Mediopicta Alba’ Century Plant.
Catalpa bignonioides Indian bean tree

Back at Long Meadow Monty is putting in supports for roses.

Monty Says that Rosa ‘Madame Alfred Carriėre does well on an East facing wall.

Derek’s Tropical Garden in Runcorn

Derek was inspired after visiting the late Will Giles garden in Norwich, Norfolk a few years ago. He wondered if he could do the same on a smaller scale further North in his home in Runcorn. 

One or two big plants in a small garden makes it feel bigger. Lots of small plants just makes it feel cluttered.

Tetrapanax papyrifer ‘Rex’ Chinese rice-paper plant
Ensete is totally tender and won’t stand temperatures below 3c but if you cut it down and dry it out in late summer you can store it in your loft over winter and plan it out again next year.
Senecio candidas Angel Wings
Tithonia rotundifloia ‘Torch’ Mexican sunflower – if we don’t have too much early frost this can still be flowering at Christmas.

Back at Long Meadow and it’s raining!

I loved this brief shot of the water feature in the Paradise Garden as Monty seeks shelter in the potting shed.

Monty is now sowing Perennials from seed.

Gaura lindheimeri
Aquilegia ‘Lime Sorbet’ Columbine
Germinate in about 10 days and will flower this summer.
Aquilegia vulgaris var. stellata ‘Ruby Port’ Columbine
May take up to 10 weeks to germinate.

Gardening jobs for the weekend – Mid April.

  • Deadhead Daffs but leave the stems and the leaves to die back naturally.
  • Prue dogwood – this will stimulate growth and ensure you have plenty of the lovely red stems in winter.
  • Plant Melon and Cucumber seeds.

See my full list of available notes / transcripts from Gardners World here. You can also find my Monty Don reading list and gift guide here.