Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals

Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Welcome to Gardening 101.
Where I share tips and techniques learned from my green thumb Mother and Grandmother.
My thumb tends to be a little black so I
happily accept any help that I can get!
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
I just finished filling my planters with a bunch of annuals.  I chose most of these flowers because my pots get a lot of sun exposure and..ehem..sometimes my watering can be a little tardy.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Every year I plant a selection of annuals {flowers that don’t generally come back year after year} in large terra cotta pots on our front steps.  I usually budget $75 for my 5 pots.  I returned to Costco again this year.  36 basket stuffers {annual flowers meant for hanging baskets} were still just $10.99!  Woohoo!  I bought 108 annual plants and 3 dracnea {in the grass family} for $45.  I had enough plants to fill the 5 pots on my front steps, 4 pots in the backyard and add to an existing arrangement.
 
I wait until there is no threat of frost before planting.  Otherwise my plants may die and I would lose my investment {here in the Okanagan you are usually safe to plant after the May long weekend}.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
I had Darcy toss the old plants from last year {that were still in my pots} and filled them with a layer of small rocks {for drainage} and potting soil {also bought at Costco}.  Here’s my selection of heat {and neglectful owner} tolerant plants…
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Salvia looked like a fun option.  One that I haven’t added to my pots before so we will see how it goes.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Dusty Miller is a lovely addition to flower groupings with its silver leaves.  Very hardy and draught tolerant.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Lobelia is another hardy flower that can tolerate large amounts of exposure to sun.  Interestingly lobelia has many medicinal properties.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Verbena is the perfect flower for potting.  It is draught tolerant and requires little care.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Petunias are a flower pot staple. They have a wide variety of gorgeous colors and flower all summer long.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
This is what you want your root bundle to look like.  Healthy white roots have lots of room to grow.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
This plant is root bound.  It has been growing in its little pot too long and may have trouble once transplanted.  You can gently massage {ha ha ha} the roots to loosen them up a bit.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
I take all of the flowers out of their containers and place them in each pot, making sure I have an assortment of varieties in each one.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
Then I plant them at least 1 inch from the top of the pot, gently pressing in potting soil around each plant.  Finally I give all of the flowers a good watering.
Gardening 101 ~ Planting Annuals
I had so many plants this year that I had to get creative with my containers!  I can’t wait to see all of these planters fill out and show you the results!
I have planted a vegetable garden again this year and will share how I tried to use crop rotation and companion planting soon.  Check out my other Gardening 101 posts for more pretties from around the yard.

 

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