Lathyrus odoratus 'Karen Louise'
spencer sweet pea seed
- available to order from late autumn
- approx 20 seeds
- Position: full sun
- Soil: fertile, humus-rich, well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: average to fast-growing
- Flowering period: June to September
- Hardiness: hardy annual
A delightful sweet pea, which produces large sprays of pale lavender flowers on long stems throughout the summer. Ideal for exhibiting, the flowers also have a good, strong scent, so a vase filled with them will flood the room with perfume. Their soft colouring means they mix easily with other pastel shades as well as stronger pinks and purples.
In our (not very scientific) sweet pea trial on the nursery, we found that the flowers of this variety were a pale lilac, but hardly had any scent at all. They were carried on 6" stems and there were not too many left in August.
All the sweet-peas in our trial produced significantly better plants when the seeds were sown in autumn rather than spring.
- Garden care: From October to late March, sow seeds into pots filled with good-quality seed compost and place them in a cold frame. Pinch out the tips as the plants grow to encourage them to become bushier, and harden off before planting out in a sunny spot from April onwards. Direct sowings can be made in October or March. It is important to remove the faded flowers before they set seed, so picking them to fill a vase inside will only encourage more to form.
- Sow: September-March
- Flowering: June-September