Delphiniums are a really easy plant to grow. I often speak with people who have tried growing delphiniums and have given up. Usually this is because they have tried growing the Pacific Giant strain, and are disappointed that they didn’t come up the following year. If you read our about section, you will see that they were developed as an annual!
Growing from seed is highly recommended and you can read about how to do this here –
Once you have grown from seed or bought some quality plants, what next? Well, the good news is that delphiniums aren’t that demanding. Choose an area of your garden that receives plenty of sun – they can’t have too much and prepare the soil well. Incorporate plenty of organic matter and ideally mulch once you have planted. People often complain that delphiniums need staking, which is true. It is however quite simple and easily and quickly done. The flower stems are quite robust until the buds and flowers develop so you have a good window of opportunity to do it. Simply place a few stakes around the plant and encircle with a loop string. The first maybe 18 inches from the ground and the second just beneath the flowers. The one thing not to do is to tie the stems to the stakes, if you do and it is windy the stem will break at the tie.
Other than remembering to feed them and water in prolonged dry spells, that’s about it. Apart from….
OK, so delphs are a bit of a gourmet feast for slugs. That said, I grow a great many and suffer very little damage. Key is to apply slug control early in the season – Valentine’s Day is I’m told the traditional day to start with your method of choice. I use the new organic slug pellets that are certified by the Soil Association and safe to pets and wildlife.
Speaking of wildlife, they are a fantastic ally and encouraging it into your garden will be a massive help in controlling slugs and snails. We build a small garden pond and we notice that coincided in a big drop in our slimy friends.