Freesias, Jonquils, Daffodils, Anemones, Dutch Iris - these late winter and early spring flowering bulbs, planted during autumn, can naturalise in the right sunny, well-drained garden location and provide bunches of spring blooms. And with Freesias and Jonquils, they are also beautifully fragrant. For Daffodils and Jonquils, it's best to put them in a vase on their own, as their sap can affect other flowers.
Sweet Peas - one of the most joyful experiences is picking a posy of your very own Sweet Peas. The flowers are so pretty and most varieties are heavenly scented. Sow Sweet Pea seed during autumn in a sunny protected spot with well-drained soil. For tall varieties, like superbly fragrant Yates Sweet Pea Original, sow next to a trellis or support. Smaller varieties like Yates Sweet Pea Bijou Semi Dwarf are perfect for pots. Although Sweet Peas don't have a long vase life, you'll have lots of new flowers coming on to take their place. Don't forget to feed your Sweet Peas with Yates Thrive Natural Roses & Flowers Concentrate - it's perfect for Sweet Peas, and most flowering plants, so you can enjoy more prolific flowering and healthy growth.
Lavender - different varieties flower at various times of the year, however late spring flowering English Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia) is one of the most fragrant. Cut long stems of English lavender and remove the lower leaves before placing in the vase.
Roses - we couldn't talk about cut flowers without mentioning Roses! Whether you grow for colour or fragrance (or both), look for varieties with long stems such as pretty pink 'Cinderella', rich red 'Mister Lincoln' or snowy white 'Ice Girl'. Don't forget to feed your Roses every eight weeks from spring to mid-autumn with Yates Thrive Natural Roses & Flowers Organic Based Pelletised Plant Food to promote healthy leaf growth and lots of fabulous flowers.
Gypsophila - best grown as an annual from Yates Gypsophila Baby's Breath seed, it produces sprays of delicate white flowers on fine stems. Perfect as a long lasting filler in floral arrangements, it does best in a full sun position. Sow new seed each month to ensure you have an ongoing supply of these dainty flowers.
Zinnias, Sunflowers, Dianthus, Cosmos - these summer flowering annuals are a magnificent way to create a cut flower garden. Easily grown from seed sown in spring, they all take around 12 weeks to flower. Sunflowers, such as Yates Sunflower Yellow Empress, make a statement on their own and Zinnias and Cosmos provide bright bouquets of pinks, yellows, reds, oranges and white. Pick Sunflowers and Zinnias when the first petals are starting to open and for cosmos, pick stems just before the flower buds burst.
Dahlias - a summer favourite, dahlias come in a range of gorgeous colours and flower types. Tubers are usually planted during spring and need a well-drained spot in full sun to light shade. Tall growing varieties will need to be staked, particularly for the impressively large flowered 'dinner plate' dahlias, which can reach up to 30 cm across. Snails love Dahlia leaves, so regularly sprinkle some Yates Snail & Slug Bait around the plants, particularly during damp weather.
Gerberas - vividly coloured and daisy-like, Gerberas are one of the most popular cut flowers. Preferring temperate to warm climates, Gerberas need a protected, sunny position in very well-drained soil or can also be grown in pots. It's important to keep the crown of the Gerbera plant dry and monitor for Powdery Mildew. At the first sign of Powdery Mildew, spray plants with Yates Rose Gun.
Hydrangeas - if you can bring yourself to cut back your Hydrangea bushes, their big blousy blooms make a spectacular cut flower. Give your Hydrangea a thorough watering the day beforehand and cut stems with open and mature flowers (immature flowers can wilt). After a few days, you can refresh your Hydrangeas by submerging the flower heads in cool water for 15 minutes.