Spring is often seen as the season of rebirth and growth, and with it comes the first wave of colorful annuals springing forth from the newly warmed soil.
Whether planted in garden beds or used as accents in pots, decorative containers and hanging baskets scattered across the property, spring and summer annuals provide a vast palette of tones and hues blooming throughout the warmer months.
During the spring months, popular blooms include those in the pansy, viola, heather, snapdragon, nemesia, ranunculus, and osteospermum families, as well as daffodils, tulips, hyacinths and other spring flowering bulbs. These are best planted as soon as the weather is agreeable, typically, during the months of March and April.
As these blossoms begin to fade and the weather warms, it’s safe to transition to summer annuals around Mother’s Day. Just a few of the endless options include those in the begonia, geranium, fuchsia, dahlia, and petunia families, along with New Guinea impatiens—and let’s not forget about tropicals, which provide a brilliant splash of color perfect for summer.
Though annuals must be replaced each year, they are typically less expensive than perennials, and provide a cost-effective alternative for those looking to spruce up an otherwise bland landscape.
Prime Times & Temperatures
The key, as with any seasonal planting, is to time it properly, taking heed not to plant summer annuals too soon, as cool spring evenings will ultimately stunt their growth, courtesy of the lingering chill in the air. It’s also advisable to protect new seedlings from unneeded sun stress, especially during the period when they begin to root and settle.
When it comes to the process itself, it’s helpful to arrange pots in the same pattern you intend to follow when planting. Allow enough space to accommodate the mature species, giving each cluster plenty of room to spread and soar. Take care to water prior to planting, ensuring the root balls will be suitably moist. To remove, gently squeeze the base of the pots and cradle the plant; this avoids unnecessary stem breakage.
Once your spring and summer annuals are planted in their new homes, be sure to water thoroughly, soaking the soil. Add a layer of mulch to slow evaporation and reduce the infiltration of weeds.
For more information on the types of spring and summer annuals ideal for planting on Long Island, contact Dodds & Eder today.