Sweetpeas and other flowers

Sweetpeas in place of runner beans

Every year Cliff and I used this raised bed to grow runner beans. We had a lot of fun picking and eating them, freezing the excess. This year I switched from growing food to flowers.

Helping sweetpeas climb

Sweetpeas will climb but they don’t do it naturally, they sprawl. To help them, I twisted two pieces of jute together tightly and strung a length from top to bottom next to each of the eight stakes.  The tendrils at the ends of each growth are easily pushed between the two pieces of jute. Once the plants start to climb they seem to get the hang of it and keep going.

Plants from Awapuni Nursery

Awapuni Nursery, in the North Island, grows root-trained seedlings and sells them in bunches wrapped in newspaper. The plants are small but each bunch is cheap. I’ve placed two orders this year, the first was just a test to see what it was like to get the small seedlings sent by courier. Everything worked well and the plants are growing well.


Egmont Seeds gave out packets of wildflower mixures at the Ellerslie Flower Show in Christchurch. This year I finally sowed a couple of packets just to see what I’d get. Some have yet to flower so I still have some surprises to come.

Another view of the sweetpea teepee

They love the hot weather, look great and are good in a small vase. I’ll plant some again next year.

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