Sweet Peas are a beautifully blooming garden classic. The long-stemmed sprays of ruffled blossoms produce an irresistible perfume scent, and can either be trained onto a plant support to create an impressive column of fragrant, summer colour, or cut for a wonderful bouquet.
Growing sweet peas couldn’t be easier. Sweet peas thrive in cool temperatures, so Alberta is an ideal place for growing them. You can plant them outdoors as soon as the soil can be worked in spring. Before sowing, sweet pea seeds can be soaked in tepid water to rehydrate them. It helps them get off to a quicker start but it isn't essential as they will still germinate well in moist compost.
These pea-like flowers grow in many lovely colours and are suitable for an annual border, a woodland garden, and a trellis or arch.
Here are a few of our favourite varieties:
April In Paris - is a perfect match of intoxicating fragrance, lovely form, captivating colour, and the most intense perfume of any Sweet Pea variety.
The large ruffled blossoms are a soft primrose cream, tinted at the edges in dark lilac that deepens and increases with age.
These strong-growing vines produce heavy sets of long-stemmed flowers that beg to be cut for heavenly scented bouquets.
Jewels of Albion - This custom-blended colour palette of especially fragrant antique varieties offers both beautiful cool shades and plants with significantly more heat tolerance than other Sweet Pea varieties.
You'll have succession in bloom with "Flora Norton" (pastel blue), "Lord Nelson" (deep blue), "Mrs. Collier" (creamy-white), "Lady Grisel Hamilton" (pastel lavender) and "Captain of the Blues" (mauve-blue).
This lovely perfumed mix blooms on strong climbing vines that easily cover a trellis or fence.
Saltwater Taffy Swirls - These charming novelty Sweet Peas will delight flower lovers with their unusual patterned blossoms.
Each large flower is uniquely "flaked", showing finely rippled veins of colour that swirl throughout the pastel background of the petals.
This blended mix consists of blue, maroon, chocolate, burnt orange, crimson red, and rich purple swirled flowers all from the same packet.
A handful of these long blooming, intricately marked blooms makes delightful softly-scented centerpiece bouquets.
Royal Wedding - These long-stemmed, softly frilled sweet peas come down the garden isle decked out in glorious pure white blossoms, four to six on each long stem, all with lovely ruffled petals.
This premier award-winning variety is imported from England because it has outstanding form and garden performance and carries an enchanting fragrance reminiscent of jasmine and orange blossoms.
You'll enjoy Royal Wedding's beauty and enticing pefume indoors and out over a long season of bloom.
Cupani's Original - This is an especially strong blooming strain of this heat-tolerant treasured heirloom. It's ancestry can be traced to the first wild sweet peas from Sicily named for Father Francis Cupani, the Italian monk who discovered and sent them back to England in the 17th century.
These intensely perfumed, beautifully bicoloured flowers have petals of deep maroon-purple and orchid-violet. The fragrance of these classic simple blossoms truly wafts in the air, delighting every passerby.