Nemesia seeds come in almost every colour imaginable, and some are variegated. This native South Afircan beauty has many species and works well in rock gardens, containers and often as a border plant in gardens. This cool summer annual is normally grown from seed and started indoors to give you a head start on your spring landscaping. Nemesia does not tolerate high heat and humidity well, but is grown in warmer areas as a fall and winter flower.
Plant Nemesia seed in peat pots about 7 weeks before your last frost date. Wet the peat pot before placing the seed in. Cover the seed lightly with vermiculite. Water by placing the pots in a shallow tray of water to dampen the peat pot and then remove. The pots should stay damp but not soaked.
Keep the pots in a temperature between 10.0 and 21.1 degrees C and the seed should germinate between one and three weeks. Once you have seedlings, place them in an area that gets filtered sun or some light.
Prepare the soil in flower beds by digging or tilling a few inches deeper than the peat pots. Remove half the soil and amend it with one part peat moss, one part builder sand and two parts compost. Fill the area with amended soil and rake smooth. This will create a rich, well draining soil. For containers add a couple handfuls of compost and a handful of sand to your potting soil. The location should be in partial sun to a shady area.
Dig a hole large enough for the peat pot in the soil. Break off any lip from the peat pot that will cause water to sit around the seedling and bury the pot in the soil so the crown of the plant is at soil level. This should be done in early spring after all threat of frost is gone.
Place a slow release fertiliser around the plant on the soil. Fertilisers should not touch the crown of the plant. Follow manufacturer's directions on the fertiliser you choose for amount and how often you should apply.
Water the plant deeply to help establish the roots in the new soil and to release the fertiliser. Then water only when the top of the soil feels dry.
Pinch back tips of the plant while it is young to promote a bushier plant. Deadheading flowers is not necessary with a nemesia.
Things you need
- Nemesia seed
- Peat pots
- Shallow tray
- Builders sand
- Slow release fertiliser