Receiving your Perpetual Carnations
Hi all, below is some growing tips on how to grow your new perpetual carnations.
Once these have arrived they should be carefully unpacked if they have arrived via post and then allowed to recover from transit, if they are light in weight then they will need watering, try to do this in the morning even if this means the next day and try not to wet the leaves and then give them as much light as possible in the greenhouse or poly-tunnel (they are frost hardy but need protection through the winter).
After a few days knock the plant out of the pot to see what the root system is like (Turn the pot upside down and gently support the top of the pot with your hand and very gently knock the rim of the pot on your bench and the plant should slide easily out of the pot) If the roots have covered the majority of the compost then the plant will need potting on into a larger pot and we would suggest a 5-6” pot. We recommend a mix of a Multi-Compost and a one of J.I.No 2 around 50/50 as we are looking for a compost that is free draining and one that retains moisture and J.I.No2 assists in this with having grit and also contains limestone.
Once the plant is potted if it has not been stopped it will then need stopping, this is the removal of the tip of the stem which will allow the flowering stems to commence growing. The act of stopping is very easy, it just requires the tip to be snapped off.
The plant will then need some form of support for the flowering stems, this can be with the aid of hoops, these can be of wire or plastic, if you wish then you can purchase ready made hoops or you can make your own by making them; all you will need is some wire or plastic covered wire or you can purchase the plastic hoops that are used by leek and onion growers (See Photos) These will assist until the final potting when more wider hoop is required. We use wire hoops and make the hoop at different circumferences to assist the plant.
Try to give the plant as much light as possible and on good sunny days allow plenty of air movement by opening the doors and windows but make sure they are closed at night.
We use a wire to make a hoop which is then tied to two canes with plastic ties, these hoop can then be moved up the cane to assist in the stems growth.
The lower hoops are 6” in diameter and this keeps the growth with the perimeters of the pot, the next hoops are wider to assist in allowing the stems to flower.
Please let me know in the comments below if you have any questions on growing these wonderful flowers.