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Handy Guide to Plant Size and Simple Growing Instructions

  • Miniplant - Extra Value Plug Plant size
  • easiplants-value-plug-plants
  • Garden Ready Plug Plants
  • Super Plug Plants
  • Potted Plants

General Care

Your plants have been grown under ideal conditions, and inspected by one of our experts prior to careful packaging and despatch by post. However, should they have been damaged or delayed during delivery, please contact us immediately.

To achieve that stunning summer long display, please ensure that you regularly check your plants to ensure that they have adequate water, and feed regularly. When planting containers, mix a slow release plant food such as Suttons Controlled Release Fertiliser, plus some Water Storing Crystals into the compost. They will then need less attention throughout the summer. Watering below the foliage canopy of the plants will reduce marking and damage to the flowers. Removing the dead and damaged flower heads will not only improve the appearance of the plants, but will also prevent the plant putting energy into seed production and ensure that more flowers are produced.

Tip! – Remember to ensure all summer bedding plants are protected from spring frosts. Do not plant outdoors before late May/early June.

On delivery of your plants do this straight away:

  • Carefully unpack your plants and check that the compost is moist.
  • Should any of the compost be dry, water carefully using a small watering can, and allow to drain.
  • Stand in a light, warm place, and then follow the growing on instructions in this leaflet as soon as you can – provided they are kept moist, they can usually be left for up to 3 days.


  • To reduce the need for weeding once you have planted out your bedding display, you can dig over your planting area a couple of weeks before you intend to plant. As the soil warms this will encourage the weed seeds to germinate and these can be removed before you plant up your display.
  • If you intend to plant ‘Value Plug Plants’ through the side of your baskets then you can use a smaller pot than 7cm and transfer into baskets when well established.

Extra Value Plug Plants (Plant Size: approx. 5cm)


  • A 7cm pot filled loosely with moist compost is ideal to plant these sturdy young plants into. In each pack of extra value plug plants you will find a dibber stick.
  • Gently push it through the base hole of each cell and ease the plant and root plug out of the tray, placing it into the centre of the filled pot until the roots of the plug are covered.
  • Firm the compost gently around the base of the plug whilst ensuring the stem and leaves remain above the top layer.
  • Alternatively, plant into trays of compost. A 36x22cm (14×8½”) tray will hold up to 24 plants.
  • Grow on in a light place at a temperature of 16 ̊C (60 ̊F).
  • For Begonia and Impatiens 18 ̊C (65 ̊F) would be even better to encourage quick establishment.

Value Plug Plants (Plant Size: approx. 7cm)


  • These larger cell grown plug plants will develop very quickly once planted in 7 to 9cm pots.
  • Ease them from their tray using the dibber stick provided, pushing through the base hole of each cell, then plant into the centre of the pot ensuring all the roots are covered but that the stem and leaves remain exposed.
  • Alternatively, plant into trays of compost.
  • Begonias and Impatiens should ideally be grown on at a minimum temperature of 18 ̊C (65 ̊F).
  • For other plants 16 ̊C (60 ̊F) would be suitable.

Garden Ready Plug Plants (Plant Size: approx. up to 9cm)


  • Always ensure that the risk of frost has passed before you plant these into the garden.
  • Should there still be a risk in your area then we suggest that you pot these plug plants into a 7 to 9cm pot and allow them to develop further somewhere warm and light, before planting, rather than leave them in the growing tray.
  • For planting directly into the garden, ensure that the soil has been dug over and lumps broken down, then plant straight into their flowering position.
  • In areas where the existing soil is poor, incorporate a good handful of compost into each area you are planting.
  • Once planted don’t forget to give your plants a drink and protect them from any slugs and snails that may appear.

Super Plug Plants (Plant Size: up to 12cm)


  • We have selected these plants to be grown where you would like something that bit different in areas such as hanging baskets, patio containers, tubs and raised beds.
  • For best performance we recommend that you grow them on further, either in 9 to 11cm pots or in the final planting containers, maintaining a minimum temperature of 13-16 ̊C (55-60 ̊F).
  • Allowing these plants to establish in this way before placing in their final position outdoors will pay dividends later in the season.

Perennial Pot Ready Plug Plants (Plant Size: up to 12cm)

  • Pot these plants individually into 10-12cm (4-5”) pots using a good quality potting compost and grow on in a greenhouse, frame or outdoors once the risk of frost has passed.
  • When the plants have been potted for approximately 4-6 weeks apply a balanced liquid fertilizer every 7-10 days.
  • Once the perennial plants are fully established and have produced a good root system they can be planted into their flowering position.
  • Ensure that the soil you are planting into is well drained, incorporating a general purpose fertiliser when planting.
  • Plants should be watered directly after planting and during dry spells.

Potted Plants (Plant Size: up to 20cm)


  • These are large potted plants for ultimate convenience!
  • Well established plants in various pot sizes (as detailed against each plant) that can be planted straight into their final positions


  • For small bulb varieties up to 5+cm in size, plant up to 5cm (2″) below the soil level, for larger bulbs over 5+cm in size plant 10cm (4″) below the soil level.

Please note: Our Extra Value and Value plug plants trays contain extra cells over and above the stated quantity – so that you should normally receive a few extra plants, even if some of the cells are empty.

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12 thoughts on “Handy Guide to Plant Size and Simple Growing Instructions”

  1. Katie Brunt says:

    Hi Mark, pot up echinacea plants and grow them on in frost-free conditions until large enough to transplant outdoors. Gradually acclimatise plants to outdoor conditions over a period of 7 to 10 days prior to planting out in borders. Grow echinacea plants in a sunny or semi-shaded position on moist, well-drained soil. Coneflowers prefer deep, fertile soil and will benefit from the addition of some well-rotted manure or garden compost to the soil, prior to planting. We hope this is helpful to you!
    Best regards,
    The Suttons Team

  2. mark smith says:

    I’ve received my Echinacea (Cone Flower) Nectar Pink plugs, whats the best way forward for them to grow on, plant into larger pots, leave inside over winter or place them outside?

  3. Katie Brunt says:

    Hi Jacqueline, the hydrangea will benefit from either potting on into a container of minimum size 30cms diameter and 10 litre capacity or planting out into a border. In a container use some John Innes No 3 compost and begin feeding after 4 weeks with a general-purpose fertiliser. In a border incorporate some well-rotted manure or garden compost when planting. Keep moist and water regularly during the first year. We hope this is helpful to you!
    Best regards,
    The Suttons Team

  4. Jacqueline Martin says:

    Hi I’ve just received my 1litre hydrangea plants, what is the best way to plant them on now?

  5. Katie Brunt says:

    Hi Elisabeth, Broad beans should be planted outside in the winter but if the ground is frozen or waterlogged it would be best to pot them up and keep them in a cold greenhouse if possible. Once conditions improve they will happily thrive outside and withstand frosts. We hope this helps you and good luck with your broad beans!
    Best regards,
    The Suttons Team

  6. Elisabeth Tribe says:

    I have just received some broad beans Aquadulce Claudia – in beautiful condition, thank you. Should I pot them on also and wait until risk of frost has passed before planting outside?

  7. Suttons says:

    Hi, thanks for getting in touch. Planting is best done soon after delivery but if this is not possible the trees will be fine in a cool but frost-free place for a few days. Perhaps an unheated shed or garage. When you do come to plant, soak the roots first in a bucket of water for about 2 hours. The planting hole needs to be deep enough for the old soil mark to be at ground level or just slightly below. And wide enough to allow the roots to spread out. Refill the hole and gently tread down the surface. Water thoroughly and repeat often.

  8. miss v.a.fawcett says:

    just received a bear root bush pear tree. please advise on planting.

  9. David Harris says:

    Very Interesting blog. Thanks for Sharing

  10. Harry Chapman says:

    I have just received my order of the Sweet William plugs and planted them into pots. They are now in my green house and will stay there until next year, but do they need to be kept at any minimum temperature?

  11. Hi Sue, thank you for ordering the Agastache plugs.

    They’ll be ok in a cold frame but we’d suggest you bring them in of an evening.

    Suttons Gardening Grow How team.

  12. Sue Bickley says:

    I have just received an order of AGASTACHE plug plants. I know I need to pot them on, but do they need to be protected from frost. if so would a cold frame be enough or do they need to be kept inside until the weather is warmer.
    Many thanks

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