Monty Don’s easy pruning tip will make your sweet peas flower for longer this summer

Wondering how to boost the flowering power of your beloved sweet peas? Monty Don, as ever, has the answer

Sweet peas growing and blooming through a rustic wooden fence
(Image credit: Getty Images)

Wondering how to make sweet peas flower longer? The gardening guru, Monty Don has shared a pruning hack that he says will boost the flower power of these beloved blooms.

While you may already know how to care for sweet peas, not to mention how to grow them from seed, Monty explains that 'sweet pea flowers will rapidly develop seed pods in warm weather and these drain energy from the plant and trigger more seed production at the expense of flowers,' adding that he has 'found that the optimum picking period for sweet peas is about 10 days'.

Monty Don pictured at the Edinburgh International Book Festival, where they discussed their autobiographical story entitled 'The Jewel Garden' which describes their struggle against business failure and subsequent success.

(Image credit: Getty Images)

'It is important to remove every single flower, and to enjoy the resulting fragrant bunches of blooms for the house,' he adds cheerfully.

'Few garden chores can be as pleasant or undemanding as this but be sure to regularly pick all the flowers from your sweet pea plants is the best way to extend their flowering season,' writes Monty Don on his popular gardening blog.

How to make sweet peas flower longer, according to Monty Don

What you will need

Every bit as fragranced as they are flouncy, there's a reason these cottage garden staples are so popular with gardeners, even if it sometimes feels as if they've faded far too quickly for our liking.

How best to keep them blooming, then? Well, Monty says you should grab a pair of sharp garden scissors (we rate these floristry pruners from Amazon) and cut the stems as long as possible, taking care to remove seed heads as quickly as possible.

'This way, in a cool summer, the plants can go on flowering right into September,' he promises.

Purple sweet peas

(Image credit: Getty Images)

The experts at the National Sweet Pea Society agree wholeheartedly with Monty Don's methods, noting that 'once flowers appear they should be cut regularly or deadheaded to ensure no seeds are produced, otherwise flowering will cease'.

Considering this has been one of the more miserable summers to date, then, we can't think of a better way to cheer up the (soggy) view from our window than by extending the lives of our beloved sweet peas. If you need us, we'll be in the garden...

Kayleigh Dray
Acting Content Editor

Kayleigh Dray became Ideal Home’s Acting Content Editor in the spring of 2023, and is very excited to get to work. She joins the team after a decade-long career working as a journalist and editor across a number of leading lifestyle brands, both in-house and as a freelancer.