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How to Plant Wildflowers
Step by step instructions on how to plant your wildflower seeds.
Find mixtures for your region, or for special uses such as dry areas, partial shade, attracting animals, low growing, and more.
Over 75 choices that will bloom in the second year and for years to come.
Over 110 choices for fast color, such as poppies, cosmos, sunflowers, zinnia, and many more.
Help the birds, bees, butterflies & hummingbirds by planting wildflowers.
Wildflower seeds native to your region. Support local wildlife with native wildflowers.
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Perennial Planting Guide
Step by step instructions on how to plant your bare root or potted perennials when they arrive.
Spring Flower Bulb Planting Guides
Step by step instructions on how to plant your spring-planted flower bulbs when they arrive.
Let's Do Lawns Differently
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How to plant a cover crop
Learn about varieties which help to replenish nutrients to your soil.
Thrives in areas with cold freezing winters and hot summers.
Thrives in areas with hot temperatures.
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To determine if a plant is sufficiently cold hardy, the USDA created numbered zones indicating winter low
temperatures; the lower the zone number the colder the winter.
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How to grow them: Good full sun is really all that's required, although some of the newer hybrids will even bloom in partial shade. As for water, they don't need much, since they're from hot desert-like habitats. Soil? Almost any soil will do, but they prefer fast-draining gritty soil, if you have that available.
Zinnia seeds are perfect for starting indoors to have bloom early. But be sure you wait until every frost is gone, and the soil has warmed up a bit before setting them out. They're super-sensitive to frost--after all, these plants are from frost-free regions, and don't like cold soil. If you'd rather, you can just wait until spring arrives, and sow them outside. They're very undemanding.
The Wildflower that's been all dressed up for years. There about 20 species of Zinnia in the wild, all in the arid, rocky soils of North, Central and South America, most common in Mexico. If you saw the wild plants, you'd be amazed, since Zinnias are one of our most heavily-hybridized wildflowers, and the somewhat "ragged" originals look nothing like our garden beauties. That's because hybridizers discovered them early, and have been "working on them" for decades.
The Wild Ones The most commonly hybridized species is Zinnia elegans, a common wild plant in Mexico. But in recent years, work has been done on some of the other species. Like the dahlia (also from Mexico) the Zinnia takes quickly and willingly to almost anything the hybridizers want to do: Taller, shorter, or bigger flowers. Multi-colored flowers. You name it, and they seem to be able to do it to Zinnias.
Because of that, these flowers have been staples among major color-makers in gardens since your great-grandmother's time, and more and more beautiful zinnias are created for our gardens almost every year.
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