ficus elastica tineke could be a great supply of coloration to accent and your house's landscape. While flowering trees and shrubs provide brief periods of coloration, most annuals start blooming shortly after planting and continue to flower for the size of the growing season. Annuals vegetation are available in a spread of colors, sizes and species tailored to both solar or shade. This makes it potential to plant annual flowers almost wherever. Annuals are good for flowerbeds, borders, pots and window containers, hanging baskets or as short-term floor covers and fillers.

Annuals are non-woody plants that full their life cycle in one season, ending with seed production. Some annual plant do reseeds themselves, reminiscent of marigolds and seem to have a perennial behavior.

Use in the Landscape

Annual flowers can play an necessary role in a well-designed landscape. In comparison with most perennial plants, annuals require more upkeep and water, so plant annual beds must be near water sources and able to be maintained. Try to preserve annuals in beds with other annuals or vegetation with related water necessities. Planting annuals randomly throughout the landscape not only increases maintenance, but also lessens the crops' aesthetic affect.

Though annual flowers and plants bring a wide range of interesting textures and forms to the landscape, they are most notable for the color they supply. You will get the most impact within the landscape by planting in a easy mixture of shade. Colour themes using related colors, corresponding to crimson, orange and yellow (warm colours) or inexperienced, blue and purple (cool colors) work properly. Warm-colored flowers deliver pleasure into the landscape and tend to seem near the viewer, making the house wherein they are planted really feel smaller. Cool-colored flowers, however, seem extra distant, making a higher sense of backyard area. Cool colors also are likely to loosen up and soothe viewers.

Utilizing shades of 1 colour (together with white) can also be a well-liked and enticing theme. One other pleasing effect comes from utilizing complementary colors - these colours found straight opposite one another on a shade wheel - comparable to orange and blue or purple and yellow. These combinations type high shade contrasts and create lots of pleasure and interest within the panorama. All the time concentrate on surrounding or backdrop colours to realize a coordinated overall design. The best way to set off annual flower colors and textures is to provide a easy backdrop of green vegetation.

Annuals are a superb means to attract attention to constructing and residential entrances, walkways and outdoor residing areas and to supply owners and visitors with pleasing "up-close" visual and aromatic experiences. Once more, you will need to be selective in placing annuals so their potential to attract attention isn't diluted.

Plant peak is one other essential design consideration. Sometimes, a flower border has the tallest vegetation within the again, medium height crops within the middle and quick plants within the entrance. An island planting places the tallest crops in the midst of the mattress, surrounded by plants of reducing heights.

The model of the annual bed should be suitable with the overall fashion of your landscape design. A planting can have either a proper or informal design, depending on the arrangement of the planting. Formal designs, for instance, are usually made up of geometric traces and symmetry, with strong focal points that entice the attention. In distinction, informal designs have curved, flowing strains and natural kinds, follow natural terrain and create an asymmetrical steadiness within the planting.

Earlier than planting, the physical characteristics of the positioning should be evaluated. Take into account the positioning's soil type, fertility, drainage and its exposure to sun and wind. Examine site characteristics with particular plant requirements. An annual plant tailored to site situations grows and flowers extra vigorously and has fewer pest issues. Some vegetation intolerant of warmth and sun may carry out adequately when planted partially shade.

Annual flowers supply flexibility in landscape design. Any planting could be changed every growing season, creating an entirely new design. As part of their quick change potential, annuals can be used as a brief resolution in an issue website.

Seeds and Plants

Many annual flowers, reminiscent of marigolds, globe candytuft and zinnias, may be direct-seeded. Others must be started indoors and transplanted outdoors at the applicable time. Some annuals, similar to larkspur, could be fall seeded. Growing seedlings indoors is not difficult, however does take some effort and a number of other weeks of careful attention. As a result of it's so a lot easier and cheaper to get transplants from a backyard center, many gardeners are better off purchasing transplants.

When deciding on transplants, look for stocky vegetation with dense foliage and rich colours. Keep away from seedlings which might be leggy, yellowish or dry trying. If doable, verify the foundation system. Most healthy plant roots are white; keep away from buying plants with brown or black roots. While it's tempting to decide on blooming vegetation or ones with fruit forming, it's higher to pick those that aren't.

Soil Preparation

Put together an annual mattress by digging or roto-tilling 8 to 12 inches deep. Amend the soil with organic matter, equivalent to well-rotted manure, sphagnum peat moss, or compost. Spread 1 or 2 inches of the organic matter over the soil and 1 to 2 pounds of fertilizer, reminiscent of 5-10-5, per 100 sq. toes of mattress and incorporate. Do not over-fertilize, which may trigger excess foliage growth at the expense of flowers. Rake the bed clean and remove any stones, clods or old plant debris before planting.


Seeds of annual flowers differ in their hardiness and talent to germinate beneath certain soil temperatures. Hardy annuals may be direct-seeded in early spring. Don't seed tender annuals until the soil has warmed to 60° F. Once the planting mattress has been ready, make a shallow furrow for planting the seed. Read the seed packet for correct planting depth. Distribute the seed in the furrow and canopy very lightly with soil or, if your soil tends to crust over, with a high-quality layer of vermiculite. Vermiculite won't crust over as soil often does and it permits better seedling establishment. Vermiculite can be bought at most backyard heart. Water the planting web site with a high quality mist to forestall washing away the seed. Keep the bed moist till the seeds germinate. Newspapers, bed sheets or floating row-covers may be positioned over the planting web site to maintain soil moisture. Lower watering frequency as the seeds start to germinate. Thin seedlings before they change into crowded. Extra seedlings can be transplanted to different beds or potted into planters for decks or patios.

Planting Transplants

Though some annual crops tolerate cooler conditions, most needs to be planted outdoor solely after hazard of frost is previous. Plant during the coolest part of the day, preferably when it's cloudy. Moisten plants before removing them from their containers. If roots are pot-bound, barely tear the foundation ball to encourage spreading.

If you are utilizing plant-able peat pots, tear them to permit the roots to easily break through the edges. Additionally, tear off the top rim of the peat pot. This prevents the peat from being exposed to the air where it would act as a wick and draw moisture away from the soil ball, drying out the plant.

Set the vegetation on the recommended spacing and cover them with soil to the depth of their container. Agency the soil across the roots and water immediately.

Most vegetation reply effectively to pinching at planting time. Pinching, or eradicating the early flowers, permits the plant's energy for use to determine the plant somewhat than assist flowers. Pinching also induces branching, which will, ultimately, enhance the number of flowering stems. For greatest results, pinch out the primary and second set of leaves.


Annual flowers typically require 1 to 1 1/2 inches of water every week. Ensure the water penetrates to the basis zone. Generally, hand watering isn't sufficient to provide ample and uniform quantities of water. Soaker hoses or sprinklers are more satisfactory watering strategies. Soaker hoses are probably the most efficient as a result of there may be little or no runoff, and evaporation and soil compaction are slight. Keep away from overhead watering, notably within the night. This may promote foliar diseases. Watering in early morning, rather than at night time can scale back foliar illnesses.

An annual flower planting could require extra fertilizer during the rising season. If the soil fertility is low, fertilize plants at a fee of 1/2 to 1 pound of 5-10-5 per 100 sq. toes every 4 to six weeks. Sprinkle the fertilizer frivolously alongside the row and scratch it into the soil. Make sure that to use an excellent flower or vegetable fertilizer, preferable with no chlorine (Cl). Check the label to make sure there isn't any potassium chloride or muriate or potash listed within the components. Chlorides on vegetable and annual will cut back fruiting and flowering.

Though most weeds in landscapes could be adequately controlled with a mixture of mulching and cultivation, herbicides can be found to be used in annual flowerbeds. There are a lot of good pre-emerge herbicides that can be used with transplanted vegetation.

Earlier than spraying or making use of any herbicide or chemical, learn the label rigorously to determine if it is secure to be used on the plants you're growing.

Pinch off pale blooms no less than weekly to stimulate blooming all through the season. Trailing crops, similar to fibrous begonia, petunias, pansies and coleus, could be pruned to keep the crops compact and stimulate further blooming. Removing pale flowers prevents the crops from forming seed. In consequence, they'll bloom once more in an effort to complete the life cycle.

Annual flowers have comparatively few insect and disease issues. However, specific issues will characteristically develop on some plants. Sustaining wholesome plant progress, spacing vegetation so they obtain good air circulation, planting in a web site with good drainage and sun publicity suited to the plant will normally reduce illness problems. Fast identification of the problem and application of the correct insecticide or fungicide will reduce pest damage.

Annual crops will add a burst for colour to any yard or panorama. The convenience of progress of most annual plants and resistance to disease make them perfect for even the most novice of gardeners. A properly cared for annual flowerbed would be the highlight of your yard and produce you a lot days of beautiful colour to your landscape. For extra articles on annuals and other gardening topics, visit the articles section of A Excellent Backyard.