How to be a Great Little Gardener Episode 2: Different Plant Types
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So, after Episode 1 you are armed with your new arsenal of gardening tools. Before you start tackling the plants, you need to know more about them. Is it an annual? a biennial? In this episode, Phil will help you figure it all out.
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There are so many plants in the world but so little time to grow them all and the classification of them all can be confusing. So, I have boiled it right down to basics.
You may find a plant is labelled as an annual. Think of a sunflower. An annual does everything in a year: you sow the seed in spring, it grows, it flowers, it produces new seed and then it dies - all in a year.
A plant could be labelled up as a biennial. Now guess what that is? Two years - think of something like a foxglove. So, it grows its leaves in the first year and then the second year it flowers, sets seeds and dies. You get little seedlings around it but the original will die and that is a biennial.
A perennial, on the other hand, as the name kind of implies will last for years. Think of things like the agapanthus and things like heleniums and penstemons. They grow every spring and they get bigger every year. They flower in summer, usually at summer, and then they die down in winter. But the next spring, they come up again.
Then, just to throw two more into the equation, you have got shrubs. They are the woody backbone of your garden. You plant them and you leave them alone and they supply interest in whatever season they are going to flower. In winter, they will lose their leaves but they will sit there and they will take anything that winter throws at them, and then spring back in to life the following year.
And then, the obvious one, trees. Big woody stem, beautiful tree on top that can really create structure in a garden.
So, once you have found out the plant you want, the success of it in your garden depends on the soil. (see Episode 3)
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