Take a tip from expert gardeners and buy your sweet Williams as bare root plants; they’ll establish quickly, flower earlier and make stronger plants. Although the exact origin of the English name ‘Sweet William’ is unknown it appeared in botanist John Gerard’s garden catalogue in 1569! They were believed to have been grown by Henry VIII in the 1530’s at Hampton Court making them a true Heritage plant.
The fabulous clove-scented flowers bloom at just the right time to keep borders constantly colourful from spring into summer. Grow them en masse for a tapestry of colours and bi-colours including pink, crimson, white and deepest burgundy. They make fragrant, long-lasting cut flowers.
Planting bare roots in autumn is the traditional way, because they produce much stronger, more ﬂoriferous results earlier in the spring.
Plant the bare roots into weed free, well cultivated soil in sun or part shade. Space plants around 15-20cms apart. Keep moist until established.
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