Alyssum is now botanically called Lobularia, but in spite of the slight name change it is still one of the most popular edging plants out there. Where its low growing, spreading habit mingles so well with all other flowers and the bonus is, it is easy and quick to grow.
Carpet of Snow is a dwarf growing variety with a spread of up to 35cm. The pure white flowers makes a lovely show against blues and reds and really does look like a carpet of snow on the ground, also this flower is very attractive to pollinators such as bees. The plant itself grows to a very low height of 10cm.
WHEN TO SOW
February to May
WHERE TO SOW
Early sowings in trays under glass at 24-25°C. Later sowings can be made direct into the flowering site.
WHAT TO DO NEXT
When seedlings are large enough to handle, prick out into the mult-cell or seed trays. Gradually acclimatise plants to outdoor conditions and plant out, or thin to 30cm (12″) apart once risk of frost has passed.
Sprinkle a few seeds in the gaps of stone walls to produce plants that will trail down the wall.
FLOWER SEED SOWING TECHNIQUE
Prepare the soil in the flowering site well in advance, ensuring that all weeds are removed. Choose a time for sowing when the soil does not stick to your shoes but is moist below the surface and fairly dry on top. The soil should be crumbly and even. Rake the surface after a light treading.
Either mark small rows for sowing or mark an area for scattering seed to rake in afterwards. Hardy Annuals should be sown to a depth of about twice the size of the seed. If the ground is dry, water the rows before sowing, not after.
Sow the seed carefully and thinly, aiming to get a seed ever 2cm (3/4″) and then gently rake the soil to cover and firm with the back of the rake. Water gently if the weather is dry for a period, but do not water too often as this will encourage the roots to form just below the surface and you will be watering all summer long to save your plants! Aim to encourage the roots to go further to seek water and you will have a more relaxed summer and a finer show of flowers in the long run.
When the seedlings have formed their first pair of true leaves, they should be thinned out and you can, by careful lifting of the excess plants, transplant them to other flowering sites.
Thin September sown seeds in about October or early November before they cease growth for the winter.