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We believe in growing for all, so here is our jargon buster to make it easy for everyone to enjoy the world of gardening. If you come across jargon we haven't covered email us at helpme@sproutl.com or message us on Instagram.

Acid / Alkaline soil

Different plants like different growing conditions. It’s well worth investing in a home PH testing kit before diving into a big garden overhaul, expensive new planting scheme, making a new vegetable plot or when growth is disappointing/ leaves keep turning yellow.

Aerate

To expose to air.

Annual

A plant that will produce fruit or flowers for one season before falling over and dying. You'll need to buy them every year.

Bare-Root

A plant that is dormant or not actively-growing. The plants are removed from their initial growing soil when they are transported, which is great for them as they don’t need to adapt from one soil to another when the receiver plants it.

Bedding plants

These offer instant pops of temporary colour—perfect for beds, borders, containers and hanging baskets – such as violas and sweet peas.

Biennial

A plant that will grow in the first year, flower or fruit the second year, then pass away.

Biodynamic Demeter

If you see this on a product it means that the product has Demeter Biodynamic Certification. This means that it has biodiversity and preserved ecosystems while being produced.

Coir

A natural fibre extracted from the outer husk of a coconut. It’s used to help soil retain water while allowing drainage and aeration.

Deciduous

A plant that loses its leaves at the end of the growing season, then grows fresh new ones at the beginning of the next.

Evergreen

A plant that keeps its leaves throughout the year.

Full sun

A plant that needs direct sunshine for 6-10 hours a day.

Hardy

Generally refers to how Bruce Willis your plant is. As a rule, “hardy” will survive to -15ºC, “frost hardy” will survive to -5ºC, “half hardy” will survive to 0ºC, and tender will give up the ghost below 5ºC.

Herbaceous

Perfect for spring/summer colour in a border. Herbaceous means a small to medium sized plant perennial, without wood stems above ground—such as Californian poppies or salvia. Herbaceous plants' stems die back in late autumn and early winter, their roots surviving below ground during winter, before shooting again in Spring.

Husk

The outer shell of a coconut, used for mulch and compost due to its water retaining properties.

Kieserite

An effective soluble form of magnesium sulphate being pH-neutral therefore does not cause soil acidification, and offers plants magnesium and sulphur in a form that can be immediately absorbed.

Loam

A fertile soil made from clay, silt and sand.

Partial shade

A plant that needs 3-6 hours of direct sunshine per day.

Peat

A deposit-resembling soil, formed by the partial decomposition of vegetable matter in the wet environment of bogs and fens, and often cut out and dried for use as fuel and in gardening. Read more about why we won’t sell it.

Perennial

A plant that will grow and produce fruit or flowers every year, year after year. Like Morgan Freeman.

Perlite

Made out of volcanic rock, perlite is used to help soil retain water but also has good drainage to avoid water-logging.

Shade

A plant that pretty much never needs to see a single shaft of sunlight.

Shrub

Excellent for adding permanent structure to your outside space, a shrub means a small to medium-sized plant—perennial, with multiple woody stems above the ground—such as lavender.

Soluble

A substance that is able to dissolve in water.

UV Resistant

The ability of a material to resist ultraviolet light or sunlight, to prevent discolouring.

Vermiculite

A mineral used for insulation and for water-retention in soil.