Cultivation and care
This wild style plant pot display uses white lacy annual Orlaya grandiflora – Ammi majus would also work. Plus ladybird poppies for a clash of red and pink – it looks fantastic at Great Dixter, seeded among the silver-leaved, shocking magenta-pink-flowered Lychnis coronaria.
For the annual orlaya and poppies to flower so early in the year, the seeds need to be sown September-October. Sow directly where they are to flower or into cell units or individual pots, to avoid disturbing their roots. There is still time to sow the seeds – until the end of May – directly where you want them to flower later this summer. Or the perennial dianthus, centaurea and daucus can also be grown from seed, but won’t flower in their first year – for more instant gratification buy them as plug plants or in pots.
A large galvanised water-tank adds an industrial edge to the wild-style planting. Photo: Andrew Montgomery
Place the pot in an open sunny site, with free-draining loam-based compost with added hydroleca or grit. Water regularly, because they are at your mercy in a pot. One that is a similar size to this water tank will help to make them feel as if they are growing in the ground
Plants used in this display
These all make great cut flowers.
(Left to right)
Orlaya grandiflora (5-7 plants)
Height 60cm, Season May-Oct.
Papaver commutatum (2-3 plants)
Height 45cm. Season Late spring to early summer. Hardiness rating RHS H4.
Dianthus carthusianorum (3-5 plants)
Height 40-60cm. Season May-Sep. Hardiness rating USDA 5a-9b.