Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day: Diascia

Salmon-coloured Diascia on my patio

I came across Diascia (aka Twinspur) for the first time 20 years ago when I started going to Franks Plants sales here in Chippenham. The blooms resemble those of Snapdragons, though the plants are more compact and like their Antirrhinum cousin, they're sold as bedding plants.

Back then I used them as a filler plant for my borders; this year they're performing a similar role in some of my patio pots and provide a good dash of colour there in their preferred sunny spot. I learnt by accident* with my first planting that these can survive the winter and are in fact perennials, not annuals like most plants sold as bedding. It makes them a bargain plant in my view.

Salmon isn't my first choice of colour, but as many of you know getting hold of plants under Lockdown has proved challenging. Now it's here, the colour's growing on me ('scuse pun). I was really pleased to find out on the grapevine back in late March Meadow Farm Nurseries had a list of plants for sale, and would do delivery to within a 5 mile radius of the nursery. We're just within that magic circle!

Petunia 'Night Sky'

It seems things have come full circle this year, not only with respect to using Diascia in my planting scheme, but also Meadow Farm Nurseries are the 'grandson' of Franks Plants i.e. they've taken on the business from the company who took over from Frank. Instead it was Derek - not Frank - who delivered my order of very healthy plants back in April, which included a return to my favourite Petunia 'Night Sky' (pictured above) for my front door hanging basket this year.

They've not been able to do the usual sales at local schools this year owing to the Lockdown, so I've been pleased to support them in this alternative way. It seems they've been rather surprised at how well the local social media grapevine worked, because they've been inundated with requests. Sadly they're not taking any more orders in this way, and have decided to focus on their regular non-school sales customers instead. I think that's a wise business decision, even though I can't buy from them again this season.

It's just as well I tucked in a few extras to make up the minimum order!

How's your plant buying gone under Lockdown?

* = because I forgot to clear them away in the autumn and then noticed plenty of fresh new growth in the spring.

Garden Bloggers' Blooms Day is hosted by Carol at May Dreams Gardens.

Latin without tears

The name Diascia is formed from the Greek for two, di and askos meaning sac. The latter part refers to the two spurs on the flower. This is also where the common name 'Twinspur' comes from.


  1. Our local greenhouses and garden centers are open as essential businesses. My favorite greenhouse owner lets me come and shop before they open, which is wonderful. I've managed to get most of what I want but now everyone is "gardening like Brits!" (made that up) and so they have sold out faster than ever on my plants. Love the Petunia 'Night Sky'. I bought some of it a few weeks ago.

    1. Our garden centres can reopen as of this week Carol, though my local one has yet to do so. Many managed a local delivery or click and collect service during lockdown, but many didn't as well. There's been a huge campaign to get garden centres reopened again, but how many can do so within the guidelines of social distancing, keeping their staff safe etc remains to be seen.

  2. I am not a fan of petunias, but those Night Sky are stunning. I haven't bought ANY plants for months! I had potting soil delivered so I could at least plant the seeds I already had. The nurseries are open (in fact all of my county and most of the counties in the state opened partially today!), by appointment, but I played it safe (told over 60s should be extra careful, and I am over, if barely!) and have not been in ANY store in so long! I am in no hurry. I sit in the car and my son shops.

    1. I've had to take on the shopping mantle as my husband wasn't allowed to drive for 4 weeks after coming out of hospital. 4 weeks on and the habit's kinda stuck!

  3. Wow that color of petunia is so rare and spectacular.I wish could get some seeds next time for my sprig blooms.I have never heard of diascia before it do resemble nemesia flower a bit to me but this color is stunning any way.Happy blooms day.

    1. Oh yes, good point Arun. When I read through my post again, I thought to myself 'You didn't mention it's like a Nemesia too', but left it at that. I'm so pleased you've spotted the likeness :)

  4. I bought the same kind of petunias for my hanging basket and mixed them with double pink petunias and short nicotiana. It turned out absolutely beautiful. Every day I look forward to seeing it grow more.


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