Thompson & Morgan is delighted to be shortlisted for the Grower of the Year 2013 awards
This prestigious event is run by Horticulture Week and highlights the achievements of businesses over the last 18 months. Thompson & Morgan has been shortlisted in the ‘Best New Variety – Herbaceous Perennials’ category for its new and world-exclusive Poppy ‘Plum Pudding’.
Poppy ‘Plum Pudding’ comes from Thompson & Morgan’s own breeding programme and is an entirely new colour in seed-raised poppies. This exciting new addition to the range of oriental poppies produces strong-stemmed plants with long-lasting colour. Poppy ‘Plum Pudding’ is compact and can be grown in patio containers too.
Several years of breeding and selection were needed to get the right colour and quality of poppy. To get this unique new poppy colour, Thompson & Morgan’s breeders grew huge numbers of Poppy ‘Fruit Punch’. They then selected the colours they thought would lead to this dazzling plum shade. They continued ‘selecting’ the colours over the course of 6-7 years until they got exactly the right shade. The next task was to isolate the colour, test it in the field and grow enough plants to get an adequate supply of seeds to sell to customers and commercial growers.
According to Nigel Judd, professional grower manager at Thompson & Morgan, “there have been some breeding developments in this species in recent years, but we wanted to make something different more widely available to both the home gardener and the commercial grower. Our aims were: unique colour, compact habit and improved, longer flowering period.”
Poppy ‘Plum Pudding’ is currently only available as plants from Thompson & Morgan. Seeds will be available from autumn 2013 in the new Seed Catalogue and online.
Rebecca works in the Marketing department as part of the busy web team, focusing on updating the UK news and blog pages and Thompson & Morgan’s international website. Rebecca enjoys gardening and learning about flowers and growing vegetables with her young daughter.