time to introduce your children to the beauty of
a hurricane, you find beauty and pleasure in simple
things and in my case it is the old-fashioned zinnia.
Now I say old-fashioned because we grew them from
generic seed packets so I donít really know the
variety. I would say it is the zinnia you grew up with
as a kid.
you are like me that was one of the first plants you
grew from seeds and you have to admit there is nothing
prettier than the large flower zinnia. Over the years I
have had the opportunity to grow large amounts of Benary
Giant zinnias for cut flowers and I can tell you that an
acre of zinnias is a breathtaking site.
love zinnias in single colors, I love them in mixes. I
love them in dahlia form and in those we call cactus. We
planted our zinnias to add a little different sparkle
this year if you will to our pollinator beds. Lest you
have forgotten the zinnia will bring in butterflies just
like the other pollinator magnets you may have. If you
havenít tried them in a while it may surprise you.
after hurricane Hermine reached us as a tropical storm
and Hurricane Matthew has turned what seems to be the
entire East Coast literally upside down, I do find
pleasure in the large 4 to 5-inch wide zinnias, blooming
their hearts out, bringing in gulf fritillaries and
may be thinking itís a little late to be talking
zinnias, and it is over much of the country. They do
make an excellent fall flower. Maybe the point is to
remind you to introduce your children to this incredibly
beautiful flower next spring. This is one flower that
can create a gardener in your little one. This is one
flower to introduce them to butterflies and the pleasure
of having flowers on the table.
you choose a package of generic zinnias sold by color or
as a mix, or whether you find Benary Giants, Dreamland
or the Magellan series, know they prefer full sun to
really put on a dazzling performance. Prepare your beds
by incorporating 3-to- 4-inches of organic matter and 2
pounds of a slow-release 12-6-6 fertilizer per 100
square feet of bed space. Direct seed, or set out
transplants that you have purchased, or grown at home
with little to no color showing.
the seedlings to around six to eight inches for the
vigorous growth that is about to occur. Mulch when the
seedlings are large enough or after setting out
transplants. Side-dress the young plants in six to eight
weeks with light applications of the fertilizer.
are champions for a long hot summer but they can also be
sown as succession crops all the way to fall when they
will partner wonderfully well with other colorful
bloomers like mums, Mexican bush sage, and asters. You
will notice they bloom before and after mums, and they
are downright inexpensive.
the Coastal Georgia Botanical Gardens, we have them
partnered with Mystic Spires blue salvia one of the most
wonderful persevering perennials we can grow. By doing
this we have partnered the best of round flowers and
spiky flowers for an unbeatable combination. I hope you
will get to know zinnias again.