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April: Annuals

Following are some suggestions for annuals to plant starting now. Well, dahlias are not annuals and vinca we do need to wait a couple more weeks for them to go in the ground. Click on each name for detailed information on each plant. So where can you go to find these annuals? Look at the article from last month’s Quail Creek Newsletter: March 2022: Garden Centers and Nurseries.

Following is the list of garden centers and nurseries and their phone numbers.

Abbott’s Greenhouse
Corner Copia Gardens
Davis Nursery
Magnolia Landscape and Supply
Mobile Flea Market
Old Tyme Feed and Garden Supply
Shore Acres Plant Farm
Stokley Garden Express
Stokley Garden Express
(251) 213-4576
(251) 517-0453
(251) 947-2366  
(251) 989-7171
No phone
(251) 928-1156
(251) 973-1602
(251) 461-6434  (Mobile)
(251) 929-9353   (Semmes)

I have also included three references which you may find quite interesting as you are searching for your Dream Garden

How To Design Your Dream Garden
21 Easy Flowers For Beginners To Grow
What types of annual plants thrive in the Southeast?

Low growing plant about 4-6 inches high. Useful for borders and blooms from about May, June, and July. They prefer sun but will bloom in some shade. You will need to deadhead the flowers to keep them blooming. They are, relatively pest free and do not tolerate wet soil.

Well, maybe not an annual – a tuber. Gorgeous for cut flowers. They may be planted from seed but most of the time you will buy the tubers in a garden center. They will be the tall flowers of your garden growing to a height of 3-5 feet. Typically, they are planted in late spring and are considered a tender perennial in zones 8-11 and may be over-wintered in the ground. They do need full sun, a well-drained soil bed, and a loose soil texture.

Without a doubt one of the most popular flowers in a garden. The come in many colors and reach a height of about 1 foot. They do prefer shade although there are now some impatiens on the market that will tolerate sun. The prefer moist, well-drained soil. One problem with impatiens is that people will plant them too early and as a result they will not have much growth for the entire season. Do be careful of over fertilization as they will become leggy. It is certainly one of the most popular annuals in a garden.

A very reliable bedding plant that comes in many colors and heights. They like moist, well-drained soil and full sun. Depending on the variety they will range in height from 4 Inches to four feet. If you deadhead the flowers, they will bloom most of the summer. If you pinch back the early flower buds, marigolds will bush out for a more dramatic effect. They need little fertilizer as too much will reduce blooming making a bushier plant.

Another good plant for borders with a wide variety of colors. They will grow to about 6 inches in height with a spread of about 9 inches. In our area be sure to regularly water keeping the soil moist. A general-purpose fertilizer will help, but keep the nitrogen low. Like most annuals they will continue to bloom if you deadhead them. Heat is not their favorite environment so keep them in some shade in the afternoon and plant early in the spring or later in the fall.

A very reliable bedding plant They are tender perennials in zones 9-11 making them better suited as annuals in our area. They will grow to a height of about 6-12 inches can have a spread of about 1.5-4 feet. They make a good border plant and depending on the type will have different size flowers and will last all summer. In the event of frost cover them for protection. They are heat tolerant and need to be watered about once a week. They do get leggy as we get into summer, but you can trim off half of the stems and this will encourage more flowers and branching. After trimming add some fertilizer and water. The flowers will go to seed so you will want to deadhead them and prevent seed pods from forming.

Another perennial that is grown as an annual and is sometimes called a periwinkle. They come in many different colors and very hardy in our climate. If the temperature drops below 65F they will probably be stunted. So, buy these after the temperature warms up to about 80 F. They are a low growing plant, about 8 inches, and will spread to about a foot, or more. Plant them about 8 inches apart. One nice characteristic – no deadheading needed! They are drought resistant. and do well in sun or light shade. They do like the soil on the dry side. A slow release fertilizer, i.e. osmocoate,  at planting time is helpful.

A very reliable bedding plant They are tender perennials in zones 9-11 making them better suited as annuals in our area. A standard in the south and a wonderful plant for cut flowers, butterflies, and blooms all summer. They may be grown in all zones! They come in a variety of colors, heights and do well in hot humid climates. Zinnias do require watering once a week. After the flowers dry on the stem you can collect the seeds and save for next year. Be aware that hybrid seeds may not be true to their parent. Matter of fact, you can just let some of the seeds fall to the ground and reseed the same year later in the fall. I had some zinnias that were blooming into November last year! They are great butterfly flowers and swallowtails seem to really enjoy them.

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