Wyevale Garden Centres

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I keep sowing red poppies but they never show. It’s a new garden, mostly clay with mushroom compost on top to about 5 inches. Any ideas?

Poppies need full sun, open space and fertile, well-drained soil to thrive. If you have these conditions growing from seeds should be easy. Turn the compost into the clay soil beneath and then leave for the frost and rain to do their work breaking down the clods into a workable friable till. A few weeks before sowing in the spring, lightly work the soil surface with a rake to level and break up any remaining clods. Scatter the seeds on the surface and either very lightly rake over to cover the seeds, or apply a thin layer of well worked, friable (almost dry) topsoil.

Another (more expensive) option would be to buy ready grown plants in the spring. These will cast seed when they have finished flowering. The seeds will make their way all over your garden, and germinate where they want to. This will tell you where in your garden the poppies want to grow. Simply follow and sow your seeds around where the poppies have seeded themselves.


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