Petunias – customer trial panel update

I love petunias but with last year’s awful weather I was reluctant to grow them this year – I did not want to have another year of soggy flowers.

As usual when the T&M plants catalogue came in spring there were so many new and unusual petunias I just could not resist giving them another chance this year. And with all the sunny weather we have had recently I am so glad I did. They have gone from being bushy green leaved plants to being completely covered in flowers.

My favorites so far are the Crazytunias – ‘Wedgwood’, ‘Strawberry Cheesecake’, ‘Banoffee Pie’ and ‘Sophistica Bicolour’. It’s just amazing how Mother Nature can come up with such amazing colour combinations!

Petunia ‘Black Cherry’ is such an amazing colour, almost black! I am already thinking of plants I can combine with it for next year. And am also hoping it is still around at Halloween this year as it will make a spooky addition to the decorations!

Petunias - customer trial panel update

Petunia ‘Black Cherry’

The other reason I love petunias is their scent. They have such an spicy exotic fragrance I don’t know why more fuss isn’t made over them. I wish someone could capture this scent in a candle as I would certainly buy it.

I find the best varieties for scent are Petunia ‘Tidal Wave’ and also the ‘Tumbelina’ range which have lovely double flowers as well as strong perfume. This year I have managed to find 16 different varieties of ‘Tumbelina’ and as a result had to invest in a new hanging basket stand to hang them all from. It’s still early but the stand is already looking good!

Mesembryanthemums love the sun and the flowers are so jewel like. The leaves of these plants are so unusual too. They look like they have ice crystals all over them.

Petunias - customer trial panel update

Mesembryanthemum

I am a huge fan of exotic plants and this year I have grown schizanthus ‘Dwarf Bouquet Mixed’ from seed. The flowers are really unusual and look like mini orchids.

Petunias - customer trial panel update

Schizanthus

Also earlier this year I came across some caladium bulbs at a flower show. I have seen these plants in America but never in the UK. They were potted into pots and kept in the conservatory. The leaves are like stained glass windows and are so paper thin you can almost see through them. They are so fast growing which is really surprising, considering how little chlorophyll is actually in the leaf. I am searching everywhere for more varieties. If anyone out there knows where I can get some from please let me know!

Petunias - customer trial panel update

Caladium

Well that’s all for now. Need to get back outside and continue watering!

Bijal Mistry
As a member of Thompson & Morgan’s customer trial panel, Bijal Mistry tests plants, bulbs and seeds in his own garden on the outskirts of Manchester. He has won several awards and is happiest tending to his garden, especially the begonias and poinsettias!

2 Comments

  1. How do I become a customer trial panelist please.
    .

    Reply
    • Wendie Alexander

      Hi Marjorie, thank you for your interest in our customer trial panel, we no longer provide the plants for free but we do allow a substantial discount for our triallers of 50% off any plants you purchase and provide a trial for. I have forward your name to Michael Perry who deals with this, and he will be in touch. I hope this is something you would like to do? Also if you would like to write a blog we would love to hear from you. We run competitions for our bloggers.

      Reply

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