If you're looking for a prolific annual flower for gardens and bouquets in a wide range of colors, try zinnias. The plants range from low growing, to tall and statuesque. Flowers come in all the colors of the rainbow depending on the variety. Group them in a flower or vegetable garden for color and to attract bees and butterflies.
When & Where to Plant Zinnias
Light: Zinnias grow and flower best in full sun. They can flower in part shade, especially in warmer climates with afternoon shade, but they may be more susceptible to disease and have fewer flowers.
Soil: Zinnias grow best on fertile, well-drained soils high in organic matter. Well-drained soil is important because zinnia seedlings can be prone to rotting in cool, wet soils.
Spacing: Plant zinnia seeds a few inches apart in rows or clumps. Thin to 8 to 18 inches apart, depending upon the variety, once the plant has grown four leaves.
Planting: Plant zinnias in spring after all danger of frost has passed, around the same time you'd plant tomatoes. Zinnias are easy to grow directly-seeded into the garden. For sooner blooms, start seeds indoors 4 to 6 weeks before your last frost date.
How to Grow Zinnias Throughout the Season
Growth Habit: Zinnias come in a wide variety of plant sizes. Some are low-growing. 1-foot tall plants with a mounding habit. Others are 3-foot tall plants with big flowers. Plant the right variety for your usage and that your space allows. Mounding varieties have smaller flowers and produce more ornamental looking plants. Taller varieties are often used for cutting and are best grown in rows or clumps for a better visual effect.