This summer we are putting aside the lower half of the garden at Pig Row. This is around 6 x 12 metres on a southern slope that runs down to the house. It is cut through by a path to the kitchen steps and up to now has been the dumping ground for building rubble, piles of rotten wood and old bricks for the new path. This spring we will clear it, strip off the weeds and couch grass, dig over, rake and sow direct annuals here. This will be done in garden blocks (2m x 2m) selecting seed from several of the UK seed merchants (each garden block is given over to one seed merchant). This is not a compare and contrast exercise. We are not here to tell you which seed catalogues to buy from or even to tell you which seeds to grow. We just want you to see how easy annuals can be and how they reward you throughout the season. We want to see which annuals give you the greatest impact;, colour, height, scent for minimum out lay. In these budget busting times we want to promote the best growers with the best price. We want to show you that buying online and from catalogues can be more rewarding and less confusing than the garden centre (who due to a limited customer base can only house a limited seed choice).
I have sown annuals before but not on this scale. I hope you will join me in this exercise, prepare your garden as I prepare mine (you can garden on your own scale from pot to plot), sow some of the annuals we suggest (unfortunately, we can't provide you with free seed but we can point you in the right direction) and follow my ups and downs. I will blog about this through Spring, Summer and early Autumn before the first frosts come. Hopefully, the seed merchants who get on board with this trial will do some guest blogs. Letting me and you know a little more about them and what annuals they can't do without. Gardening is a subjective business and what we like on Pig Row may not be what you like, what the seed companies promote may not be what you like but there is always something to try in annuals. Get involved and let us know which annuals you swear by. Through this year we will promote some the annuals we love, some of the companies we swear by and show you step by step how to grow, tend and keep annuals thriving.