Hardy Annuals

This page lists many of the hardy annuals that I’ve written about on pumpkinbeth.com.  Click on the name of each plant to discover more information and find links to further articles.

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Borago officinalis is a hardy annual herb that’s commonly known as Borage or Bee Bread (in the UK).  This plant has edible leaves and flowers that have a cucumbery aroma and delicate cucumber flavour.  If I were you, I wouldn’t get too excited about eating…

Broad beans (also known by their botanical name of Vicia faba) are wonderfully easy to grow beans that tastes delicious.  If you haven’t grown them before, you might think of yourself as someone who doesn’t like broad beans, but stay with me – it’s still…

Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ is a dwarf broad bean.  If you’re looking for vegetables to grow in containers, Broad bean ‘Robin Hood’ is an ideal choice.  Broad Bean ‘Robin Hood’ is a green seeded broad bean, which grows to just 30-40cm (12-16 inches) tall. In…

Cabbages, also known by their botanical name of Brassica oleracea var. capita, are a beautiful and delicious vegetable. The cabbage pictured above is a savoy cabbage, but many cabbage types and cultivars are available for the gardener to grow; each cabbage type has different sowing…

Calendula officinalis, is a short lived perennial, (it’s usually treated as a hardy annual) which can be sown outside, directly where you want the plant to flower.  I find that March through until June is usually the best time to sow seed of Calendula in…

Calendula officinalis ‘Snow Princess’ is a hardy annual, which produces flowers with either yellow or brown centres, all of which are circled with lemon yellow petals, which become paler in colour as the flowers age. Calendula officinalis ‘Snow Princess’ is an easy to grow plant, which can…

Calendula POWERDAISY SUNNY (‘Kercalsun’) (PowerDaisy Series) came third, in the RHS Chelsea Flower Show Plant of the Year 2016 Competition.  Calendula POWERDAISY SUNNY flowers continuously, from March to November, in all weather conditions.  This new Calendula is virtually sterile, so it won’t set seed all…

Centaurea cyanus is an easy to grow annual, also known by its common name of cornflower.  Centaurea cyanus is best sown directly in the soil, where it is to flower.  I love growing Centaurea cyanus!  If you want to grow Centaurea cyanus, sow seeds from March until…

Corn salad ‘Medallion’ (Valerianella locusta) is a super easy to grow salad plant!  This is an annual plant that produces edible green, oval rounded leaves, with a subtle mild flavour. I’ve grown corn salad ‘Medallion’ from seed in a really shaded position inside my Vegepod. …

Gypsophila is an easy to grow, hardy annual that is often used by florists and flower arrangers.  Ever since I can remember, Gypsophila has been a very popular wedding flower. This is a perfect plant for a delicate look, a super choice for a flower…

Helianthus annuus, also known by their common name of sunflowers, are tall growing annuals with very large, round flower heads with brown centres and yellow outer petals, which are very attractive to bees and butterflies.  The flower heads of Helianthus annuus turn to face the sun,…

Helianthus annuus ‘Little Dorrit’ is a rather charming little sunflower that’s short in stature and very sweet.  Plants grow to around 60cm (2ft) tall.  Each Helianthus annuus ‘Little Dorrit’ plant produces a stout and sturdy stem that holds these stunning single flowers, with dark raised…

Lagurus ovatus ‘Bunny Tails’ is a really lovely annual grass that produces ovate, soft, fluffy, panicles which look very pretty on the plant, and last indefinitely as a cut flower.  The stems dry so well and so easily, requiring no special care – simply cut…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Almost Black’ is a Modern Grandiflora Sweet Pea cultivar; a recent introduction, which was raised and introduced by the renowned Plant Breeder, Keith Hammett, in Auckland, New Zealand. This is certainly the darkest coloured sweet pea I know.  Lathyrus odoratus ‘Almost Black’ plants…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Annie B. Gilroy’ was bred by the renowned sweet pea breeder, Henry Eckford.  This sweet pea cultivar was introduced for the first time in 1907.  A delightfully vivid flowered sweet pea cultivar, Lathyrus odoratus ‘Annie B. Gilroy’ plants produce vibrantly coloured, cerise-magenta coloured…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Aphrodite’ is a sweet pea cultivar with large white, wavy flowers.  This annual climber was introduced by Unwins back in 2011. Lathyrus odoratus ‘Aphrodite’ is a very vigorous sweet pea cultivar, that produces a great many white blooms on each of its flowering…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘April in Paris’ is a Modern Grandiflora sweet pea cultivar that produces ivory-cream coloured flowers, which feature a gently wavering narrow picotee edge of a mauve-pink colouration and become more suffused with the same tone of mauve as the blooms age. This is…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Betty Maiden’ is a Spencer sweet pea cultivar.  It’s a lovely variety with delightfully fragrant blooms.  The flowers’ particular colouration is known as a blue stripe on a white ground – this sweet pea’s ivory coloured petals feature purple-blue veining and a purple-blue…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Black Knight’ is an Old Fashioned sweet pea cultivar that was introduced by the renowned sweet pea breeder, Henry Eckford, in 1898.  Plants produce rich maroon-purple coloured flowers.  Lathyrus odoratus ‘Black Knight’ small sized flowers are borne on stems holding two, three, or…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Charlie’s Angel’ is a Spencer Sweet Pea cultivar, which was raised by Charles Hamner and introduced for sale in 1990.  The Royal Horticultural Society awarded ‘Charlie’s Angel’ an Award of Garden Merit in 1993, which has been retained ever since.  Lathyrus odoratus ‘Charlie’s…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Countess Cadogan’ is an Old Fashioned Sweet Pea cultivar, which produces violet-blue bi-coloured flowers.  This charming sweet pea cultivar was bred by the renowned sweet pea breeder, Henry Eckford; this sweet pea was first introduced in 1899. I’ve grown the flower you see…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Cupani’ is often referred to as the original sweet pea, as its appearance is very similar indeed to the sweet pea form that was discovered by a Sicilian monk named Francis Cupani, back in the 1690s.   Modern sweet pea cultivars descend from this…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Dorothy Eckford’ is an Old Fashioned Sweet Pea cultivar, that was grown by the famous sweet pea breeder, Henry Eckford, and introduced in 1903.  Henry Eckford named this sweet pea cultivar after his daughter, Dorothy. It’s amazing to think that well over 100…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Earl Grey’, was the first bicoloured flaked sweet pea cultivar.  These sweet pea flowers have a very striking appearance; I guess it’s one of those plants that you either love or hate!  Lathyrus odoratus ‘Earl Grey’ flowers feature standard petals that are splashed…

Lathyrus odoratus ‘Frances Kate’ is a Spencer sweet pea cultivar with flowers that feature a deep blue stripe, on a white ground.  This is quite a striking flower that makes a real impact in the garden.  A tall, climbing plant this sweet pea will need…

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