A guide to our plants

Read our guide and explore how to get started on container gardening


a guide to our plants

On every different plant page on our website there is a table underneath with all sorts of handy information that should help you to choose the perfect plants for your garden.

Below, we help you navigate this page, so you know what to look out for.

Product page

what's what

Type: It’s helpful to understand the different types of plants to help you decide what you want to grow, and how long they will thrive in your garden. See below.  


Soil: this refers to what kind of soil a plant needs to thrive, with a focus on PH level. Luckily, 95 % of our range is labelled ‘broad tolerance’ which means that many of our plants are not fussy and do not have specific requirements. We’d recommend choosing these when starting out.


Moisture: this addresses what kind of soil a plant prefers. Hopefully by now, you have a good understanding of your garden and have identified your soil type, so you’ll know what you are working with and the steps you can take to improve your soil – whether it’s adding grit to improve drainage, or adding some compost to improve the level of nutrients in the soil.


Spread: This means how much space a plant will take up in your bed or pot and will dictate how far apart your seedlings and young plants need to be spaced.  

a reminder of different plant types

If you are new to gardening, understanding the different types of plants will help you get to grips with how to care for them. Here are some useful definitions to get you started:


Annuals complete their life cycle all within the space of a year and are defined as hardy or half-hardy…

Hardy annuals can withstand frosts and are often planted in the autumn or early spring.  

Half-hardy annuals annuals will struggle to withstand winter wet and cold and will be zapped by frosts in autumn. Protect these plants under cover and only plant outside when risk of frost is well and truly over. 

biennials and short-lived perennials

Biennials are plants whose lifecycle spans two years. In the first year, they will produce roots and leaves, and in the second year they flower, set seed, and then die. If they like the conditions of your garden, they might reappear from the seed of the original plant

Short lived perennials have a lifespan of around 3-5 years. They may not last as long as long-lived perennials, but they generally bloom profusely early on


Perennials live for much longer than 2 years, and if they are hardy, they will remain in the garden from one year to the next. These plants are a worthy investment for any outside space. Some perennials are evergreen, whereas many are herbaceous, which means their foliage dies back completely to the ground in winter.

Top tip - labelling will help you identify what’s in your beds, pots and borders and will prevent you digging up dormant plants when weeding.

Tender perennials will start to suffer in low temperatures and won’t survive frost unprotected. You can protect these plants by covering them with a ‘duvet’ of compost or manure or lift them and store them undercover until early spring, either on a windowsill in a cool room, or in a greenhouse or polytunnel if you have one. You can treat a tender perennial as you would an annual.