Can you keep annuals alive all year long? You do not have to worry about that. Annuals, by the way, are a class of perennial flower that do not survive the wintertime. Yes, they will flower again the next year in full bloom, but you will have to start them again from seed. It is that easy. There are some things that you can do to help ensure that your perennials will get through the dormant time without dying.
Start timers – When planning your flower garden design, be sure to plan your planting times for the different annuals and perennials that you plant. Why should you do this? Because with the timed planting schedules, you ensure that certain plants are getting enough time to bloom. Some plants bloom more quickly than others. If you want to be sure that your plants will get the sunlight and water they need, try using a timer.
Choose your plants wisely – Some people mistakenly plant their flower garden beds with annuals and perennials that bloom later and earlier each year. Don’t do that. You want your plants to flower and thrive during the growing season, so don’t do it. It is also not a good idea to plant plants farther apart, unless you are very close to each other. Annuals should be planted at the foot of your flower garden bed and perennials at the head of your flower garden bed. Make sure to place them in the order that will provide the most benefit to your plants.
Proper mulching – One of the reasons why some plants do not survive the wintertime is because they do not get the proper mulch. What does the word “proper” mean exactly? Mulch means layering, which is how most plants are pruned. The newer, higher growing flowers get the benefit of the layer. If you mulch your annuals during the growing season, then you will ensure blooming throughout the year.
Watering – Check with your local extension office for advice on how much water your plants will need. Annuals do not need as much water as perennials, but they do require more frequent watering. This is especially true during the blooming season. Most flowers do better when you water them only twice a week.
Disease and pest problems – Certain insects, fungi and pests do not like growing near your flowers. Check with your local extension office for information on how to control these problems. Keep your plants away from disease by keeping the soil moist, making sure your flower garden includes compost for good drainage and adding some organic mulch. Another way to prevent diseases is to make sure that you are planting your flower garden in a healthy and well-drained location.
Mowing – Check with your local extension office for advice on how much mowing your garden should involve. Most flower gardens don’t need very much mowing, unless there are specific circumstances where you have to mow deep into the garden. Check your local planting regulations to find out how much mowing you need to do.
Planting & Growth – How much water does your garden need? Annuals need a lot less water than perennials. This is especially true during the blooming season when they need more water to help with their growth. Annuals thrive in full sunlight, so ensure you are planting your flower garden in a location that has full sunlight throughout the year. You can keep annuals alive all year round if you make sure they get enough water.
Pests – How many pests does your garden have? Annuals are fairly easy to keep pest free because they don’t attract pests like other plants do. However, some insects such as white grubs can be very persistent. If you see a lot of white grubs in your garden, you may need to apply a natural pesticide to control them.
Disease – There are a number of diseases that can infect your annuals. Be careful not to put your annual on a sunny tree that receives a lot of sun. White grubs can also be passed on from one plant to another through direct contact. Don’t forget that most perennial flowers, especially those that grow towards the end of the season, can be susceptible to fungal disease and insect infestations.
Knowing how to keep annuals alive all year long is a good thing for anyone that wants to grow their own garden organically. Annuals require almost no special care and you will save yourself a lot of time and frustration if you know exactly what to expect before you plant. Annuals also have a very short life span, sometimes only growing a few leaves in an entire year. By making sure that your annual plant has everything it needs before you plant it, you can avoid problems in the future.