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Annual Biennial

Tropaeolum majus 'Black Velvet' (Tom Thumb Series)
  • RHS Plants for pollinators

A bushy annual to 30cm with light green, circular leaves supported on central stems. In summer through to early autumn flowers open deep red with a velvet texture providing a striking contrast to the leaves

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Size
Ultimate height
0.1–0.5 metres
Time to ultimate height
1 year
Ultimate spread
0.1–0.5 metres
Growing conditions
Loam
Sand
Chalk
Moisture
Moist but well–drained, Well–drained
pH
Neutral, Alkaline, Acid
Colour & scent
StemFlowerFoliageFruit
Spring Green
Summer Red Green
Autumn Red Green
Winter
Position
  • Full sun
Aspect

West–facing or South–facing

Exposure
Sheltered or Exposed
Hardiness
H3
Botanical details
Family
Tropaeolaceae
Native to the UK
No
Foliage
Deciduous
Habit
Bushy
Genus

Tropaeolum can be annuals or perennials, bushy, trailing or climbing by twining stems, with simple or palmately lobed leaves and showy funnel-shaped flowers with five long-clawed petals and often a spur

Name status

Unresolved

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How to grow

Cultivation

Best grown in poor, well-drained so adviceil in full sun, if the soil is too rich foliage will be produced at the expense of flowers.

Propagation

Propagate by seed sown in mid-spring

Suggested planting locations and garden types
  • City and courtyard gardens
  • Cottage and informal garden
  • Patio and container plants
  • Flower borders and beds
  • Garden edging
  • Ground cover
  • Wall side borders
Pruning

Deadhead to prolong flowering

Pests

May be susceptible to blackfly (black aphid), cabbage caterpillars, flea beetles, slugs and glasshouse whitefly

Diseases

May be susceptible to virus diseases

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