Annual flowers are a great way to add a lot of color to your landscaping. They are fast growing and there are so many varieties! Annuals are commonly found at your local nurseries. They are also easy to start from seed if you want to save money. Here are 15 easy to grow annuals you can add to your yard this spring!
15 Easy To Grow Annuals
Annual plants are plants that only last one growing season and need to be planted again the next year. In colder climates, some plants that are perennials are grown as annuals. I have also shared my 15 favorite perennials (plants that come back every year) Today I wanted to also share my favorite annual flower varieties. There are so many beautiful flowers to choose from but here are 15 annual flowers that are easy to grow!
Zinnia flowers are one of my all time favorites! They are colorful, very easy to grow annuals, and there are a several varieties. The shorter varieties do well in planters and window boxes as well.
You can directly sow them in the ground as soon as temperatures are over 50 degrees or start them indoors 4-6 weeks before the last frost date. Then transplant outside in late spring. I have a whole post dedicated to starting seeds indoors.
For best results, they like full sun. The taller varieties make great cut flowers for vases. These easy flowers attract lots of pollinators to your yard and are a good flower to mix in with your vegetables. The blooms last a long time on the plant and in a vase.
These flowers might look fragile, but they are hardy and usually reseed themselves each year. They can even grow in poor soil. In fact, they prefer it. Don't worry about fertilizing these guys. They won't like it much. I love their feathery leaves! They can get pretty tall and make great cut flowers. I grew a cut flower garden last year and loved it!
They come in shades of pink and white flowers and look great in any flower garden. They are one of the easiest flowers to grow from seed.
Everyone knows about petunias! They are a great container plant. If you have hanging baskets, window boxes, or planters on your patio, these are a great option. There are even some trailing varieties. Petunias are very fragrant flowers and smell amazing. These beautiful blooms are heat tolerant and like the sun, although they can tolerate some shade.
Sunflowers are so easy to grow from seed! They can tolerate just about any soil type. There are so many different varieties that range in height. While you can grow varieties that are shorter, my favorite kind to grow are the ones that grow 6-8 feet tall. The flowers are the size of dinner plates and the seeds are edible too! There are a range of colors from white to yellow to orange and red. They are best planted as seed directly into the ground. They don't transplant well. These easy annuals are so cheerful!
Sweet Alyssum looks great in container gardens as well as a border to flowerbeds or rock gardens. The small flowers come in a variety of pinks and purples and white. It is a low growing plant with tiny little blossoms. In some regions this can be a perennial but in most places it is a really hardy annual. It is one of the easiest annual flowers. You can find these easy to grow annuals at any garden center.
This annual comes in various colors like white, red, purple, and pink. It is another annual that does well in containers. It is heat tolerant, pest resistant, and blooms all summer. The annual verbena is low growing and spreads out a bit as the season goes.
These were always a favorite of mine as a kid. I loved pinching them to make them "talk". They come in so many colors and heights. Most snapdragons available in your local nursery will be dwarf varieties. In warmer climates, they can be perennials but since they prefer cooler temps (night lows in the 40s and daytime highs in the 70s) they are usually grown as an annual. Snapdragons prefer full sun. They are a great addition to any flower bed. You could even add them to your vegetable gardens to attract pollinators.
Impatiens and Sunpatiens
Impatiens love shade or at least partial shade, so if you have a north facing flower bed these will do great there. They are one of the few that thrive in shade which makes them a popular anual. They need moist (not overly wet) soil. If you love the look of impatiens but want them in the sun, Sunpatiens are for you!
This was the first flower I ever grew. When I was little my mom gave me a packet of seeds and a little corner of your flowerbed. I think the round leaves are just as interesting and pretty as the flowers themselves! Both the leaves and the flowers are edible. These easy to grow annuals come in a range of warm colors from bright orange to creamy yellow, to red. There are vining varieties available that look great growing up a trellis. They actually do better in poor soil so don't fertilize.
Lantanas are in the same family as verbena and have a similar look. They have a long bloom time and come in a variety of colors. You will have blooms from early summer clear until the first frost.They attract hummingbirds and butterflies. They prefer warm weather so don't plant until all threat of frost is gone. Lantanas can grow in a variety of soil types as long as it is pretty well drained. They bring such vibrant colors to your garden beds and are drought tolerant.
Dahlias come a wide range of heights and bloom sizes. The showy blooms can be anywhere from 3 inches to over 10 inches! Most of the plants that are sold in nurseries are the shorter variety. If you want a taller type (like what is grown for cut flowers) you will need to buy tubers. Tubers are planted in well-drained soil as soon as all danger of frost has past. In cold climates, they will need to be dug up in the fall and stored until the next year. In warmer climates, they can over winter in the ground and are perennial flowers. There are so many varieties, colors, and sizes! Dahlias bloom in mid to late summer clear until frost.
Ranunculus flowers are perennials in zones 8-10. The bulbs (called corms)are planted in the Fall. But in colder climates, you need to either plant in the early spring and then dig up the bulbs in the early fall, or cover them in a high tunnel to over winter them. Since most home gardeners don't use high tunnels, they grow them and treat them as an annual. You can buy them as plants from a nursery. They require full sun. Ranunculus also do well in pots.
These next two annuals, while not necessarily a flower, are great additions to flower beds or planters. Coleus plants come in different varieties and colors. Their leaves are stunning! They are a great way to bring in bright colors to your yard. Some are suited for shade while others like sun, so no matter what, there's one right for you!
Sweet Potato Vine
This a favorite for planters and window boxes due to the trailing nature of the plant. It overhangs in such a beautiful way and really fills out a planter. I have seen it in flower beds as well. They like the heat so plant in a sunny spot. There are bright green and purple varieties.
Who doesn't love pansies? They do well in cold weather and struggle in the heat. Plant them in the fall and enjoy them well into the spring! They are one of the first things to bloom in the spring.
Do you have any easy to grow annuals that are easy to grow that you would have added to the list? I'd love to hear what you think!
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