Want to know how to grow stock flowers? You’re not alone! Many gardeners in the UK love stock flowers because of their distinctive scent and beautiful blooms. These flowers are annuals that thrive best in cooler temperatures and stop blooming once the temperatures go up. It’s best to plant them weeks before your area’s last frost date.
Ideal Growing Conditions for Stock Flowers
As mentioned, stock flowers love full sunlight, but they can also grow in partial shade under the suitable UK climate. It would help if you planted them in rich, loose soil for the best results. As for fertiliser, you can feed stock flowers once after planting them and once a month afterwards. Use a general-purpose fertiliser for flowers.
How to Grow Stock Flowers
You can plant stock flowers from seed or seedlings, but you’ll have a higher success rate if you plant them as seedlings.
Planting stock flowers from seedlings
If you choose to plant with seedlings, dig out holes in your well-draining soil large enough for the seedlings to fit and about two inches below the soil. The plant’s crown should be beneath the soil. If you’re planting them in garden beds, space them at least 15cm away from each other on all sides.
Planting stock flowers from seed
When planting from seeds, sow indoors early during the planting season. Cover the seeds lightly with less than half an inch of potting mix. Water your plants regularly until your plants begin to sprout and water two times a week afterwards.
Space your plants 12 inches apart and plant them under full sun, except if you live in warmer regions. If you want to improve the quality of your soil, you can add a layer of mulch on top.
How to Take Care of Stock Flowers
Stock flowers are great plants because they don’t need much care and attention once the gardener established them. All you need to do is to water them regularly and fertilise them once a month. Additionally, deadhead the flowers during the flowering season to promote new blooms and foliage growth.
Reasons to Grow Your Stock Flowers and Other Plants in a Greenhouse
Greenhouses provide practical gardening solutions for professionals and hobbyists alike. It protects your plants from pests, controls indoor temperature, provides additional gardening space, protection from bad weather, and more.
If you’re still deciding whether a polytunnel is a great option, here are some of its benefits that may change your mind:
Protect your plants from pests that can damage them
Aphids, caterpillars, mealybugs, spider mites, and other critters would love to eat your produce, and most of the time, these pests are tiny and hard to spot. By placing them in a polytunnel and adding traps, screens, and repellants, you’ll be able to protect your plants from these pests effectively. Fortunately, pests and diseases are not typical for stock flowers, but it never hurts to be safe.
Perfect for gardeners with a limited growing area
Mini greenhouses are great for people with limited gardening space. You’ll be able to palace your mini-greenhouses in balconies, decks, and patios, allowing you to plant flowers, crops, and other plants even with limited space.
Control the temperature inside the greenhouse
When outdoor temperatures fluctuate, your plants would be under tremendous stress, which could stunt their growth. Plants grown in greenhouses have access to temperature-altering equipment. With heaters, coolers, and air ventilation, you’ll be able to control the temperature inside the polytunnel, depending on what your plants need.
Protection from bad weather
Greenhouses offer a level of protection from bad weather conditions. One can build these indoor spaces to protect plants and grow, shielding your plants from inclement weather. Strong winds, heavy rain, and the excessive heat can negatively affect delicate plants. Polytunnel walls diffuse the sun’s rays while allowing enough ventilation.
Carbon dioxide supply
When you control the air movement inside a greenhouse, your plants will get a continuous supply of carbon dioxide to improve sugar production. While plants in outdoor gardens get a supply of carbon dioxide, strategically placing fans throughout the mini polytunnel directs the air to press closer to the leaves and boost photosynthesis. Controlling the air results in larger leaves, stronger stems, and chances of early flowering and fruiting.
However, keep in mind that you’ll need to ensure proper ventilation when controlling air movement. Otherwise, this lowers carbon dioxide levels because your plants will instead use the gas to transfer oxygen to the air.
Final Thoughts on How to Grow Stock Flowers
Now that you know how to grow stock flowers, you’ll find that they’re relatively easy to grow. Most gardeners in the UK plant them because they make beautiful cut flowers. These flowers are not only fragrant, but they also come in different colours, including crimson, pink, red, purple, lavender, and yellow. These plants also look great in flowerbeds or edging borders, but they also look cute in containers. Stock flowers can grow up to two and a half feet tall, while dwarf variants grow about 8 inches to 12 inches tall.