Our ultimate guide to choosing the right spring bedding plants for your border

This is the perfect time to think about refreshing your garden borders with some instant colour. Spring bedding plants such as forget-me-nots, bellis daisies, violas, pansies and various spring flowering bulbs are perfect to fill the gaps at this time of year. This seasonal burst of colour is a great help to fill the gap until your new border becomes more established. 


Why choose spring bedding plants

Spring bedding plants are usually planted in late summer where they steadily grow through the autumn/winter and do their thing from February until early May. Bulbs are also planted in late summer/early autumn and lay under the ground to make roots, then burst into glorious colour in spring just when you almost forgot that you planted them! 

Alternatively, you can buy these spring bedding plants and bulbs pot grown to fill in gaps now, they are slightly more expensive than planting in the autumn but offer the benefit of instant results. 


Consider your garden’s microclimate 

The great thing about spring bedding plants is that they will grow happily in any aspect, be it a sunny or shady garden spot! As they are really only considered annuals and usually discarded after flowering, you can pack them into any dull areas under and around existing permanent shrubs and perennials for maximum effect.

Plan for continuous bloom

Spring bedding plants work really well when snuggled amongst permanent plants, whether that’s a Garden on a Roll border or in pots. If bulbs are planted underneath them, you can achieve a really long flowering display. 

Some early flowering daffodils planted under forget-me-nots and pansies, for instance, can give continuous flowers from February to May! An alternative combination is to use dwarf tulips or hyacinths planted underneath alchemilla mollis and the black grass ophiopogon ‘nigrescens’, both permanent plants that we often use in our shady and cottage borders. The lime green, frothy flowers and the inky coloured grass leaves combine beautifully with orange tulips or purple/pink hyacinths.

Incorporate wildlife-friendly plants 

Many bees and beneficial insects are waking up now and are actively seeking out a source of nectar after a long winter of hibernation. Spring bedding plants are the perfect pit stop until more flowers become available in the late spring and summer, so including these in your existing planting will really benefit the wildlife in your garden.

Our wildlife border provides food and shelter for wildlife for most of the year, but reinforcement from spring bedding plants and bulbs gives the border an extra life at this time. 


Embrace the beauty of spring bedding plants 

If you’re looking to create a beautiful border that has interest all year, our evergreen garden borders offer the perfect solution, with designs for both a sunny aspect as well as one for shady spots. To add extra colour for the early spring, why not intermingle some bulbs and spring bedding plants amongst your existing displays to add colour and scent until your border is established. Contact our gardening experts for more information on how you can achieve a vibrant outdoor space enhanced by spring bedding plants.