When to Plant Annuals

Most of us can't wait to get these bright, pretty blooms into the ground!

By FamilyTime


When the spring sunshine warms the back of our necks, gardeners can hardly wait to get outside and plant, plant, plant! It’s that invigorating time of year when we put on our old clothes and dig in the dirt, turning it over and loosening it to welcome this year’s flowers and vegetables.


Annuals for the Garden

One of the most popular types of flowers with homeowners are annuals. Many have showy blooms that last from spring until autumn and most require very little care. These charmers include petunias, impatiens, marigolds and zinnias, all with colorful flowers.


Other annuals are prized for their foliage. These include coleus, Joseph's coat or calico plant, caladium, dusty miller and a wide range of ornamental grasses.


Garden centers are filled with a brilliant patchwork of flowers in six- or twelve-packs, ready to be planted in gardens, pots, along borders, and edging walkways and driveways. Tempting! 


When to Plant Annuals

There is no absolute best time to plant annuals. They will thrive anytime they are planted as long as there is no danger of frost and freezing temperatures.


Most gardeners plant annuals a week or two after the danger of frost has passed. Depending on where you live, this means they should be planted from mid to late spring. Usually a little early is better than a little late to get the full benefit of their colorful show.


If you find that the weather prevents you from planting the annuals soon after you buy them, don’t bring them indoors. Instead, keep them in a sunny, sheltered spot, water them well to keep them moist, and if the nights threaten to be cold, haul them into the garage.

There is not arguing that annuals fill out even the most groomed and attended garden with bright colors and gentle textures. Think carefully about those you will plant and enjoy the garden even more.