If plants are seen to be attacked with pea blight, the following remedy should be adopted. Make a solution with two ounces of sulphide of potassium, dissolved in eight gallons of soft water; stir the mixture well, and strain it off. Apply at intervals of about ten days, syringing with clear water immediately after the operation. At the first sign of disease ordinary watering should, for the time being, be discontinued.
It occasionally happens that the flower-buds of sweet-peas are inclined to drop off before expanding, in which case watering, and especially feeding, should be stopped immediately. The plants will generally recover afterwards.
As soon as the flowering season begins, picking the flowers should begin also. Never allow sweet-peas to run to seed, as this exhausts the plant, and will arrest the season of flowering if persisted in.
Sweet-peas may be sown in the greenhouse for flowering in pots from April onwards, sowing the first batch in September. Eight or ten seeds may be sown in a 5-inch pot, thinning them to six plants, or even to four, if very strong. They should be potted on gradually, being finally put into 12-inch pots.
Cupid sweet-peas, the dwarf variety which grows six inches high, are very charming where successful, but the damp climate of England is by no means always propitious to outdoor culture. They are very attractive subjects, however, for conservatory decoration. Their culture in the cool greenhouse calls for no special notice. Sowings may be made at any time from October until the end of April, placing six or eight seeds in a 5-inch pot.
As soon as the plants become established, water them with very weak liquid manure, given not more than once weekly.
In gathering sweet-peas, cut the blossoms with a sharp knife, and arrange the blooms lightly, with plenty of space to show them off. Ornamental grasses and gypsophila paniculata may be grown for arranging with the flowers, and vases of clear glass or silver will be found to show the flowers to the best advantage.
The following are a few of the best sweet-peas, arranged according to colour by the National Sweet - Pea Society: White, Dorothy Eckford, Nora Unwin; crimson and scarlet, King Edward VII., Queen Alexandra; rose and carmine, John Ing-man; yellow and buff, Mrs. Collier; blue, Lord Nelson, Romolo Piazzani; blush, Mrs. Hardcastle Sykes; cerise, Coccinea; pink, Countess Spencer; orange shades, Helen Lewis, Henry Eckford; lavender, Lady Grisel Hamilton, Frank Dolby; violet and purple, Duke of Westminster; magenta, George Gordon, Captivation; picotee-edged, Dainty, Fancy, Sybil Eckford; mauve, Mrs.. Walter Wright; maroon and bronze, Black Knight;. striped and flaked (red and rose), Jessie Cuthbertson; striped and flaked (purple and blue), Sutton's Marbled Blue; bi-colour, Jeannie Gordon; [marbled, Helen Pierce.