We grow sweet peas every year but this year we decided to grow a few more. Then guess what happened? We found another free packet of seeds in a magazine! Then we found another lot that were free last year and we never planted. The result was far more sweet peas than we anticipated.
One lot were a short growing variety - Snoopea - but to be honest I'm not really impressed and so won't be growing these again.
We grow our sweet peas up a bamboo structure that acts as a boundary down one edge of our plot - we're not allowed fences so this is the next best thing.
We tried to achieve the same effect last year but the sweet peas didn't really like the really dry conditions. They have had no lack of moisture this year and as a result have grown really well.
All of the varieties have been chosen for their perfume as much as anything else and are just from mixed packets not the more expensive single varieties. They are also just left to scramble up the netting which is attached to the bamboo structure - no fancy cordon work or cutting off tendrils. So why can't we keep up with them?
Well if sweet peas are to keep on flowering they need to be constantly picked so that no seed pods form. Once they have produced seed pods the plants think - job done - and just pack up. It's a Forth Bridge job cutting the flowers though so I guess that before long the plants will get their own way.
And that isn't all we have an overspill alongside our nectar bar!