As it begins to finally feel like spring, we can look forward to new blooms as gardens come to life. One of the easiest ways to add colour and interest to your garden? Annuals! Here are a few of our favourites. >>>
- Marigolds: Thrives in the sun and comes in many different colours and varieties. We love "Lemon Gem" and "Orange Tangerine".
- Salvia: Beloved by butterflies and comes in many colours. Try "Red Hot Sally" for a vibrant pop of colour.
- Bidens: Acts as a great, colourful ground cover and are easy to grow. We love the "Campfire" variety for its fire like colours of red, yellow and orange.
- Coleus: Great for borders and containers. Gets its interest from its colourful leaves.
- Begonias: Fast growing with lots of colour pay off.
- Lobelia: A great addition to a pollinator garden. Most commonly seen in a vibrant blue colour but can also be found in a variety of other colours.
- Hibiscus: Provides tropical interest to your beds and containers. Best grown in the sun and comes in many colours.
- Castor Bean: Boasts stunning star shaped foliage that adds texture to your garden.
- Amaranthus: This showy and exotic plant is great for accenting your garden. They love sun and come in many different colours.
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Once the risk of frost is gone, go ahead and plant those annuals! In our area, that is typically around the May long weekend.
Annuals do best when evenly spaced. Use spacers or string-lines for accuracy. Leave 12-18" of open soil space between the edge of the garden and the first row to allow for growth and 'framing' of the garden
Cultivate to remove weeds and loosen the soil. Rake out the garden so all plants are planted at the same height. You want even distribution and even height (no planting in divots or mounts - even if they are small - you will see it once you're done). Pack the soil around the plant. This is important! It puts the soil in direct contact with the root ball and gives some structure for the roots to establish into.
Annuals require a lot of water, especially when first planted. Be sure to take extra care early in your watering routine. Adding fertilizer is essential for annuals to get to the flowering growth and vigor we all want. They need fertilizer once a week to every other week. Pinching is helpful to avoid plants getting long and leggy (and then falling over). Annuals should be pinched to encourage thicker stems and compact growth. Once the flower is spent, deadheading is needed as soon as possible to encourage prolific flowering.
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