dracaena fragrans massangeana corn plant could be a great supply of coloration to accent and your house's panorama. Whereas flowering bushes and shrubs present brief durations of color, most annuals begin blooming shortly after planting and proceed to flower for the length of the growing season. Annuals plants are available in a spread of colours, sizes and species adapted to either sun or shade. This makes it attainable to plant annual flowers nearly anyplace. Annuals are excellent for flowerbeds, borders, pots and window bins, hanging baskets or as non permanent floor covers and fillers.

Annuals are non-woody plants that complete their life cycle in one season, ending with seed manufacturing. Some annual plant do reseeds themselves, similar to marigolds and appear to have a perennial behavior.

Use within the Panorama

Annual flowers can play an necessary role in a well-designed panorama. Compared to most perennial crops, annuals require more upkeep and water, so plant annual beds should be near water sources and capable of be maintained. Try to preserve annuals in beds with different annuals or plants with comparable water requirements. Planting annuals randomly throughout the landscape not solely increases upkeep, but in addition lessens the crops' aesthetic affect.

Though annual flowers and crops deliver a variety of interesting textures and forms to the panorama, they are most notable for the colour they provide. You'll get essentially the most effect within the panorama by planting in a easy mixture of color. Colour themes utilizing related colors, akin to red, orange and yellow (heat colours) or green, blue and purple (cool colours) work well. Warm-colored flowers deliver excitement into the panorama and have a tendency to look near the viewer, making the space wherein they're planted feel smaller. Cool-colored flowers, however, appear extra distant, making a better sense of garden space. Cool colors additionally are likely to loosen up and soothe viewers.

Utilizing shades of one coloration (together with white) is also a well-liked and attractive theme. Another pleasing impact comes from utilizing complementary colors - these colors found straight opposite one another on a colour wheel - comparable to orange and blue or purple and yellow. These combos form high colour contrasts and create a lot of excitement and interest in the landscape. All the time be aware of surrounding or backdrop colors to attain a coordinated general design. One of the simplest ways to set off annual flower colors and textures is to offer a simple backdrop of inexperienced vegetation.

Annuals are an excellent way to draw attention to building and home entrances, walkways and outside residing areas and to supply owners and visitors with pleasing "up-close" visible and aromatic experiences. Once more, it is very important be selective in placing annuals so their means to draw consideration shouldn't be diluted.

Plant height is one other essential design consideration. Usually, a flower border has the tallest crops in the again, medium height plants in the center and short crops in the front. An island planting places the tallest vegetation in the course of the bed, surrounded by crops of reducing heights.

The type of the annual bed should be appropriate with the overall style of your panorama design. A planting can have either a formal or informal design, relying on the association of the planting. Formal designs, for instance, tend to be made up of geometric traces and symmetry, with strong focal points that entice the attention. In contrast, casual designs have curved, flowing traces and pure varieties, comply with pure terrain and create an asymmetrical stability inside the planting.

Before planting, the physical characteristics of the positioning have to be evaluated. Take into account the location's soil sort, fertility, drainage and its exposure to solar and wind. Examine web site characteristics with specific plant requirements. An annual plant tailored to web site situations grows and flowers more vigorously and has fewer pest issues. Some plants intolerant of warmth and solar might perform adequately when planted partially shade.

Annual flowers supply flexibility in landscape design. Any planting might be modified every growing season, creating a wholly new design. As a part of their fast change potential, annuals can be utilized as a short lived answer in a problem website.

Seeds and Plants

Many annual flowers, resembling marigolds, globe candytuft and zinnias, can be direct-seeded. Others ought to be began indoors and transplanted outdoor on the applicable time. Some annuals, akin to larkspur, may be fall seeded. Rising seedlings indoors isn't difficult, however does take some effort and a number of other weeks of cautious consideration. Because it is so much simpler and cheaper to get transplants from a backyard heart, many gardeners are higher off purchasing transplants.

When choosing transplants, look for stocky plants with dense foliage and wealthy colours. Keep away from seedlings which might be leggy, yellowish or dry wanting. If possible, examine the basis system. Most wholesome plant roots are white; keep away from buying crops with brown or black roots. Whereas it is tempting to choose blooming vegetation or ones with fruit forming, it's better to pick those that aren't.

Soil Preparation

Prepare an annual mattress by digging or roto-tilling 8 to 12 inches deep. Amend the soil with natural matter, corresponding to well-rotted manure, sphagnum peat moss, or compost. Unfold 1 or 2 inches of the organic matter over the soil and 1 to 2 kilos of fertilizer, equivalent to 5-10-5, per 100 sq. toes of bed and incorporate. Do not over-fertilize, which may trigger extra foliage progress on the expense of flowers. Rake the bed clean and take away any stones, clods or old plant particles earlier than planting.


Seeds of annual flowers differ in their hardiness and talent to germinate under certain soil temperatures. Hardy annuals will be direct-seeded in early spring. Don't seed tender annuals until the soil has warmed to 60° F. As soon as the planting mattress has been ready, make a shallow furrow for planting the seed. Read the seed packet for proper planting depth. Distribute the seed in the furrow and cover very lightly with soil or, if your soil tends to crust over, with a tremendous layer of vermiculite. Vermiculite will not crust over as soil usually does and it permits better seedling institution. Vermiculite will be purchased at most garden heart. Water the planting website with a high quality mist to prevent washing away the seed. Preserve the mattress moist till the seeds germinate. Newspapers, bed sheets or floating row-covers can be positioned over the planting website to keep up soil moisture. Decrease watering frequency because the seeds start to germinate. Skinny seedlings earlier than they turn out to be crowded. Excess seedlings might be transplanted to other beds or potted into planters for decks or patios.

Planting Transplants

Though some annual crops tolerate cooler conditions, most needs to be planted outdoors solely after hazard of frost is past. Plant throughout the coolest part of the day, preferably when it is cloudy. Moisten vegetation before removing them from their containers. If roots are pot-bound, slightly tear the basis ball to encourage spreading.

In case you are utilizing plant-able peat pots, tear them to permit the roots to easily break by means of the perimeters. Also, tear off the highest rim of the peat pot. This prevents the peat from being exposed to the air where it can act as a wick and draw moisture away from the soil ball, drying out the plant.

Set the plants on the beneficial spacing and canopy them with soil to the depth of their container. Agency the soil around the roots and water immediately.

Most vegetation respond effectively to pinching at planting time. Pinching, or eradicating the early flowers, permits the plant's power to be used to determine the plant somewhat than help flowers. Pinching additionally induces branching, which can, eventually, enhance the variety of flowering stems. For best results, pinch out the primary and second set of leaves.


Annual flowers generally require 1 to 1 1/2 inches of water every week. Be sure the water penetrates to the foundation zone. Typically, hand watering isn't satisfactory to produce enough and uniform quantities of water. Soaker hoses or sprinklers are extra passable watering methods. Soaker hoses are essentially the most efficient as a result of there is very little runoff, and evaporation and soil compaction are slight. Keep away from overhead watering, notably within the evening. It will promote foliar illnesses. Watering in early morning, relatively than at night time can cut back foliar ailments.

An annual flower planting might require further fertilizer through the rising season. If the soil fertility is low, fertilize vegetation at a fee of 1/2 to 1 pound of 5-10-5 per 100 sq. toes every 4 to 6 weeks. Sprinkle the fertilizer evenly alongside the row and scratch it into the soil. Be certain to make use of a great flower or vegetable fertilizer, preferable with no chlorine (Cl). Check the label to verify there isn't a potassium chloride or muriate or potash listed in the substances. Chlorides on vegetable and annual will reduce fruiting and flowering.

Though most weeds in landscapes might be adequately managed with a mix of mulching and cultivation, herbicides can be found for use in annual flowerbeds. There are various good pre-emerge herbicides that can be utilized with transplanted plants.

Earlier than spraying or making use of any herbicide or chemical, learn the label fastidiously to determine if it is safe to be used on the plants you are growing.

Pinch off light blooms no less than weekly to stimulate blooming all through the season. Trailing plants, akin to fibrous begonia, petunias, pansies and coleus, can be pruned to maintain the vegetation compact and stimulate additional blooming. Eradicating pale flowers prevents the plants from forming seed. Consequently, they'll bloom once more in an effort to finish the life cycle.

Annual flowers have relatively few insect and illness problems. Nonetheless, particular problems will characteristically develop on some vegetation. Sustaining wholesome plant progress, spacing plants in order that they receive good air circulation, planting in a web site with good drainage and sun publicity suited to the plant will normally scale back illness problems. Quick identification of the problem and utility of the proper insecticide or fungicide will reduce pest injury.

Annual vegetation will add a burst for coloration to any yard or panorama. The benefit of development of most annual crops and resistance to illness make them excellent for even probably the most novice of gardeners. A well cared for annual flowerbed will be the spotlight of your yard and convey you many days of lovely color to your landscape. For more articles on annuals and different gardening subjects, go to the articles part of A Perfect Backyard.