Virginia Stock MALCOLMIA

Poor little Virginia Stock! Many of today’s gardeners ventured into horticulture with a packet of radish seed in one hand and Virginia Stock in the other, but many of the textbooks don’t even bother to mention it. The cause of this contempt is the ease with which it can be grown. A thin scattering of seeds anywhere – town gardens, semi-shady spots, cracks between paving stones and soon, and a month or two later the plants are in flower.

VARIETIES: M. maritima is usually bought as a packet of mixed seed. It is not usually necessary to thin the seedlings and the slender stems soon bear gay little flowers – white, mauve, pink, red, blue and occasionally yellow. Single-coloured varieties, such as ‘Crimson King’, are available.

SITE AND SOIL: Any reasonable garden soil will do, in sun or partial shade.

PLANT DETAILS: Height 6-9 in.

Spacing: (if necessary) 4 in.

Flowering period: – In bloom for several weeks 1-2 months after sowing.

PROPAGATION: Sow seeds in spring for summer flowering, summer for late summer flowering or in autumn for blooming in the spring.

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