10 of the Best New Flowers to Grow in 2021

Published on January 6th 2021
A close up of a dwarf sunflower
The UK’s plant breeders and seed houses have taken the wraps off new and exclusive flowers that gardeners can grow for the first time in 2021 – with gardeners’ favourite the sweet pea dominating the line-up of novelties. Candide highlights 10 of the best – the cream of the New Year crop!

Sweet Pea ‘Nightingale’

Named in honour of the seven NHS Nightingale Hospitals and the dedicated healthcare workers who have worked around the clock in response to the Covid-19 pandemic, this new Spencer-type of sweet pea has vibrant red flowers with marble-effect petals. Seed can be bought exclusively from Mr Fothergill’s, which says the blooms “will help to remind us of better times and how lucky we are to have our NHS.”
sweet pea nitingale
Image: Mr Fothergill's

Papaver ‘Amazing Grey’

Could this be the must-have new flower of 2021? Eye-catching shades of silvery-grey, borne in ruffled, papery, single and semi-double blooms that shimmer in sunlight. A twist on classic field poppies, plants grow to 60cm, while seed heads can be left in place to feed the birds in autumn and winter. Seed suppliers include DT Brown, Chiltern Seeds, Kings Seeds, Plants of Distinction, Suttons and Thompson & Morgan.
Papaver amazing grey
Image: Kings Seeds

Petunia ‘Mystical Midnight Gold’

Hailed as a “breeding breakthrough” and “the first of its kind”, this UK exclusive from Thompson & Morgan features creamy yellow flowers with dark black centres – a summer stunner for pots and hanging baskets. Reported to stand up well to summer downpours, a profusion of blooms are borne from June to September. Available as young plants.
Petunia mystical midnight
Image: Thompson and Morgan

Sweet Pea ‘Kings Ransom’

Not just new for 2021 but a “unique colour combination never seen before in sweet peas,” according to Kings Seeds, which is confident that its exclusive will be a winner with gardeners who grow flowers for cutting. As for its precise colour definition, some call it burnt orange while others say it’s more of a dusky salmon – and flowers change in colour as they age, too.
sweet pea kings ransom
Image: Kings Seeds

Agapanthus ‘Sea Breeze’

Claimed to be the “most bicoloured or two-tone agapanthus” to come onto the market, ‘Sea Breeze’ ticks all the boxes: its blue flowers fade to white along the entire length of petals while sturdy stems hold their beautiful blooms up high. Plants remain compact, adding an exotic touch to summer borders, while this deciduous variety is hardy to -10C. Available from Suttons as young plants.
Agapanthus 'Sea Breeze'
Image: Suttons

Sweet Pea ‘Three Times As Sweet’

The result of 10 years of plant breeding work, this “modern grandiflora tricolour” sweet pea displays three colours on each marbled flower – lavender-blue, burgundy and white! A Thompson & Morgan exclusive, blooms are fragrant on this sun-lover that scrambles up walls and fences. Available as young plants, it’s a must for cutting for the vase.
sweet pea three times as sweet
Image: Thompson and Morgan

Sunflower ‘Dwarf Sunray Yellow’

Add a splash of sunshine to pots and borders with this unique, F1 hybrid, naturally dwarfing sunflower that grows to no more than 55cm high and bears up to 14 dazzling yellow flowers with chocolate centres. New from Kings Seeds, it’s a fun plant that’s ideal for kids to grow.
sunflower dwarf sunray yellow
Image: Kings Seeds

Polemonium ‘Golden Feathers’

Developed by breeders in Australia, lavender and lilac coloured flowers emerge in spring and last for a couple of months, offsetting unique golden variegated foliage. Easy to grow, this perennial showstopper thrives in pots and borders. Introduced as young plants by Dobies and Suttons.
polemonium golden feathers
Image: Suttons

Geum ‘Samba Sunset’

For super-size blooms from June to August, look no further than this Thompson & Morgan young plant exclusive. Breeders have worked their magic and conjured-up giant double flowers that span up to 8cm – twice the normal size! A hardy perennial that’s perfect for borders, pots and patios.
Geum Samba Sunset
Image: Thompson and Morgan

Sweet Pea ‘Supersonic’

The cottage garden favourite has been reinvented! With traditional pastels that’ll fill the air with sweet fragrance, this new and improved ‘jet set’ sweet pea type has been re-selected by breeders to remain compact, reaching just 1 – 1.5m high and making it perfect for growing in pots as well as summer borders. Launched by Suttons and available as seed.
sweet pea supersonic
Image: Suttons
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