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The Scented Garden - Sweet Peas and Old Fashioned Pinks



Who'd envy a sweet pea?  By rights they should reign over the choicest spot in the garden - looking and smelling as ravishing as they do - whereas more often than not you track them down to a row by the cabbage patch where they languish  in regimental splendour ready for cutting.  Though I think them lovely as cut flowers, my enthusiasm for sweet peas in the garden is boundless.  I grow them up everything - the climbing roses, the apple trees. (Felicity Bryan)


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via pinterest
You can of course wait until spring to sow your seeds in situ.  But that way you won't see flowers until high summer.  If, however you get sowing the first two weeks in October then you will have large plants to bed out in spring and with luck have flowers by early June (Felicity Bryan)

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via pinterest

This has been a good year for sweetpeas in our garden by the sea.  I picked my first bunch in early June, from plants sown in the greenhouse last October, and am still picking a couple of bunches a week from a mid-February sowing.  Their fabulous scent and colours - white, pink, crimson and maroon, and every shade of mauve from the palest lilac to blackberry ripple to indigo have been a delight all summer long.
(Elspeth Thompson)

Sweet Peas in the Rosebank garden August 2011
These are the sweet peas in the Rosebank garden last year - I had trouble with greenfly on them at one stage, but after spraying with an organic insect spray they recovered and went on flowering for weeks.  This year after a dodgy start they are at last beginning to climb but as yet have no flowers. 

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via pinterest
The flowers should be picked regularly or they will go to seed and stop flowering.  Normally I have bunches in the house all summer long - they have an enchanting fragrance and colours of jewel-like intensity - no gardener worth his salt should be without them.
via Google

Sweet peas on tiptoe flight, With wings of gentle flush, o'er delicate white (Keats)

A garden full of sweet odours is a garden full of charm, a most precious kind of charm not to be implanted by mere skill in horticulture or power of purse, and which is beyond explaining.  It is born of sensitive and very personal preferences yet its appeal is almost universal (Louse Beebe Wilder)



GARDEN PINKS
The old-fashioned carnation name pinks comes from the serrated flower edges, which look as if cut with pinking shears. And the name of the color pink is said to come from these perennials, which have been popular in gardens for hundreds of years. The many dianthus species and hybrids come in red, white, orange, purple, cranberry, and of course, many shades of pink. Flower size ranges from less than an inch to several inches wide, and height ranges from just a few inches to several feet tall.

I only have one patch of pinks which have kept going for several years - they have, unfortunately, been beaten down by the rain and are laying flat, but it hasn't  affected their fragrance.  They are related to carnations and sweet williams and are perennial.
dianPlum
Mention old-fashioned pinks to anybody, gardener or non-gardener, and they will immediately know what you are talking about. They have an evocative quality about them that almost defies definition. They conjure up the hurly-burly of the cottage garden and yet at the same time have a serenity all of their own. The flowers have a delicacy and yet still have substance, while the perfume they possess can be quite heady; filling the warm summer's air with the scent of cloves. (Thompson and Morgan)



You have to agree that pinks are a must in the scented garden, although they seem not to be a common as they once were. 


 

Comments

  1. Hello, Elaine,
    Sweet Peas are just beautiful!
    I also have a soft spot for Pinks as they remind me of my childhood!
    Have a lovely Friday!
    Thank you also for popping over to mine with kind words!
    Maria x

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    1. They are having a rough time of it this year I'm afraid - hopefully they will pick up when it stops raining

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  2. Lovely post. I wouldn't be without either flowers. Luckily pinks like my chalky soil, though they are a bit battered this year! xx

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    1. Mine too Debbie - I had one or two other varieties but they seem to have gone missing in action.

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  3. I have no sweet peas this year, and have never grown pinks, though I wish every year that I had a good place for them! Yours are delightful!

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    1. I love them both too but they are getting spoiled by the rain this year which is a shame - never mind - there's always next year (she says hopefully).

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  4. I'm growing a perennial sweet pea this year, it's just started flowering. On the down side, the perennial varieties have no scent.
    I have one garden pink plant, but the weather had not been kind to it this year.

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    1. I have a perennial sweet pea in the front garden that is bent and battered this year - normally it puts on a fine show - but as it's not fragrant I didn't add it to this post.

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  5. Hi Elaine, I've failed miserably with sweet peas this year. I do have half a dozen plants but they are still about 6 inches tall! Absolutely rubbish. Hopefully I'll still get a flower or two. And I love dianthus and grow several at the Priory. I actually think their spicy scent is more intoxicating than any other flower. Dave

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    1. I sowed loads and they all did well until I put them outside - disaster - those that survived don't seem to want to flower. I agree about the dianthus - not appreciated enough in my opinion.

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  6. Hi Elaine... I love both sweetpeas and pinks, yet I have none growing in the garden.. that I will have to rectify.
    Have a good weekend.

    Julie xx

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    1. I should wait till next year if I were you this is not a good year for either. Enjoy the rest of the weekend.

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  7. Nice post, they were both favourites of my mum. I like both but only grow sweet peas, but I really must try pinks next year. Flighty xx

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    1. Your Mum had good taste Flighty - pinks are dead easy to take from cuttings if you know someone who has got them.

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  8. Your sweetpea photo from last year is really pretty. I have white everlasting sweetpea but it has no scent and its very slow growing this year. Its so much nicer to have lovely scented flowers.

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    1. I have those in white, pale pink and dark pink - I know it's nice to have fragrant sweet peas but they are still lovely.

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  9. Loving these scent-focused posts, Elaine. And it's interesting to see when your season is for sweetpeas -- ours end in May. Yes, I do have a small patch of pinks, but they don't bloom as well as I'd like.

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    1. Glad you're enjoying these posts - in a normal year sweet peas carry on flowering right through the summer - but as this year isn't normal not sure what's going to happen with them - it's all a bit topsy-turvy.

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  10. I love sweetpeas Elaine, and ours seem to be doing really well this year. They have the most divine smell and I am keeping them cut to bring them inside.

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    1. Mine seem reluctant to flower - a bit more warmth needed methinks - I expect they will get there eventually.When we visited Coton Manor they had a huge vase full in the cafe much earlier than they should be - apparently they grow them in autumn and overwinter them - I have tried it myself, not very successfully though.

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  11. I do indeed have scented Pinks in my garden. They grow well from cuttings so I get a few more every year.

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    1. I am hoping to increase the varieties I have next year - a real cottage garden plant in my eyes.

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  12. Sweet peas and pinks! Two of my favourite favourites (apart from proper roses, and alliums, and sedums, and oh all the others). Can't wait to get to our seaside house and start planning my new garden. I have so many ideas.

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  13. I bet you can't wait - it is exciting planning a garden and quite a challenge too - I am sure you will change your mind a thousand times before you decide on what you want it to look like. Thanks for visiting my blog.

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  14. So much beautiful color in your seaside garden! It must be very peaceful there.

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  15. I think the comment before yours must have confused you it was she who had a seaside garden not me - my garden is in the countryside and is normally very peaceful.

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  16. I love sweatpeas! When I was a little girl and had to be in a hospital, my mother brought me these flowers. Since that I've loved them...

    Satu

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    1. That is a lovely story of a simple flower with a beautiful fragrance.

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