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When Is A Good Time To Plant Seeds For Flowers For Spring And Summer
Starting flower seeds early indoors gives you a jump on the growing season. Knowing the best time to start flower seeds depends on your climate and the hardiness of the flowers you intend to plant. Cool season flowers are hardier to the cooler temperatures that may be experienced in early spring. Flowers that are tender to cold temperatures should not be grown outdoors until the chance of frost has passed.
Hardy annuals such as calendula (Calendula officinalis), bachelor button (Cenia turbinata), wallflower (Erysimum spp.) and clarkia (Clarkia spp.) can tolerate the cooler temperatures of early spring. You can start seeds for these and other cool season plants indoors during early February. Seedlings should be ready for transplant outdoors in March, depending on the variety. Beginning your year by starting seeds for cool season flowers can result in a colorful spring garden.
Warm season flowers such as cosmos (Cosmos spp.), dianthus (Dianthus spp.), nicotiana (Nicotiana spp.) and zinnias (Zinnia spp.) can be sown indoors in March to prepare for late spring and summer blooms. These plants are not cold tolerant so they should not be transplanted outdoors until the danger of frost has passed.
Seeds for cool season flowers can be sown directly into the ground during April. They do well with the remaining cool weather and provide late-spring blooms. At the end of April, warm-season flowers can be seeded outdoors as well. Keep in mind that direct seeding outdoors can increase the difficulty of maintenance as flower seedlings compete with weed seedlings. Clearly mark the areas where you plant your seeds and be able to identify the leaves of your plants. This will help you ensure you are removing the weeds and not your seedlings during maintenance.
If you choose to start seeds indoors while temperatures are still cool outside, remember that young plants need warmth and light. They can be accommodated with a heating pad placed beneath the seedling tray for added warmth. Although sunlight through the window can be adequate for growth, a fluorescent light or grow light is ideal. Insufficient light can lead to weakened stems. To ensure your seed-starting efforts are rewarded with healthy, flowering plants, proper seedling care is essential.
homeguides.sfgate.com by Cynthia Domenghini; December 06, 2018
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