Gardening: Colour that comes back

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Planting up a new garden or even just filling in a few gaps can be an expensive business these days with hardy perennials going for upwards of £6 a pot in garden centres.

So if you are looking for something different for your garden, with free advice on where to plant it, how to care for it and at a really good price, then look no further than the Hardy Plant Society spring sale.

A wide range of plants are sold; hardy perennials, shrubs, climbers, houseplants, veg, annuals and bedding.

With prices ranging from 50p to £5 there is sure to be something to suit everyone.

Hardy perennials are excellent value for money as they reappear year after year.

The part of the plant above soil usually dies back in autumn, but the bit below soil level is alive and well, lying dormant for winter. As the soil begins to warm and daylight hours lengthen in spring, both trigger regrowth.

There is no need to worry about late frosts either, as the word ‘hardy’ in hardy perennial means that the frosts don’t trouble them too much.

So for the price of a cheap bunch of flowers, you can have colour year after year. As you can buy hardy perennials to flower most months of the year, you can have interest in the garden whatever the date on the calendar.

About 20 growers contribute plants to the sale, some are amateur enthusiasts others are professional nursery men and women, but all know their plants and how to grow them successfully.

So if you are looking for something that’s suitable for damp shade, a sunny site that bakes dry in July, a bright windowsill, under a tree or gaps in your vegetable plot, come along and see what’s on offer.

This sale affords a great opportunity to source well – priced and often unusual plants.

The hardy perennials, shrubs and climbers will all have been grown successfully in the local area for a number of years and so are proven to suit the Sheffield climate and soil.

The HPS runs an autumn sale too, on Sunday, September 17, where there will be a special section on autumn colour.

So go along this month and hold the date in September to grab your gardening bargains.

The next sale is at the Sheffield Botanical Gardens – in the greenhouse off the Thompson Road end – on Saturday, May 20 from 11am to 2.30pm, and on Sunday, May 21, from 10am to 1.30pm.