Q&A: How to successfully grow lupin

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These old cottage-garden favourites, whose colourful flowers appear from early summer onwards, are still incredibly popular – and still come with some baggage.

There is also a fungal disease Lupin anthracnose which affects the leaves and stems.

But when they’re untouched by pests and diseases, they are incredibly lovely plants. Deadheading the plants as the blooms fade will encourage a second flush of flowers.

Lupins like a well-drained soil and plenty of sun, and although they are not the longest-lived of perennials, they are easy to replace – sow seed under glass in spring or plant basal cuttings in March. Or, buy named varieties of plants, such as ‘Noble Maiden’, from a recognised grower or specialist.

Left to their own devices, lupins will spread and self-seed.