Here are some top Valentine’s suggestions:
- Bunches of roses are very traditional Valentine’s Day gifts, so a potted rose is an obvious suggestion. Ideally, choose a rose that has an appropriate name (e.g. ‘Best Friend’ or ‘Love Potion’) but don’t be too constrained by this. Colour, size and fragrance are the most important.
- Gardenias (pictured below) produce masses of fragrant white blooms through summer. They enjoy warm conditions and seem happiest in morning sun with some protection from the hottest part of the day. Cut back hard in late winter and feed regularly with a slow release fertiliser such as Yates Dynamic Lifter Soil Improver & Plant Fertiliser.
- Star jasmine, Trachelospermum jasminoides, is a moderately vigorous climber that can be easily trained into a lollipop standard.
- Frangipani is suited to warmer areas and there are now some exotically-coloured reds, oranges and combination colours available.
- Lavenders are well suited to cooler climates. Keep them in good health by cutting back lightly after flower flushes to promote new growth. In acid soil areas, give a sprinkling of lime once a year.
- Don’t forget citrus, too. With their scented leaves and perfumed blossoms they’re some of the world’s top fragrant plants. An avid foodie might appreciate a kaffir lime, with leaves that add flavour to Asian dishes.
- Lemon myrtle, Backhousia citriodora, is a delightful native tree with lemon-scented leaves that are infused to make a refreshing tea.
- Rosemary, the herb of remembrance, makes an ideal Valentine’s gift. Attach a card explaining the long history of this pungently fragrant herb and the significance of your gift will be magnified.
If your Valentine’s gardening skills are limited, don’t present them with a gardening task that could become a potential source of frustration. Include some instructions on growing the plant (a Yates Garden Guide would be a good place to start) and the basics of fertiliser and plant protection. A bottle of plant food such as Yates Thrive All Purpose Liquid Plant Food, and, for ornamentals, a Rose Gun Advanced, would comprise a basic care kit that would be suitable for even the least experienced of gardeners.