- An annual plant completes its life cycle in the span of one growing season. This means they germinate from seed, grow, flower, set seed and then die; usually Spring to Fall. Some annuals thrive in cool weather and complete their life cycle Fall to Spring.
- This plant can be used as a tender perennial (coming back year after year) in mild winter areas of the country where temperatures rarely dip below 32°F for long periods of time. In extremely cold winter areas plants can be dug up, potted, and brought indoors to overwinter and replanted the next year.
- Annual flowers are a prime source of landscape color. While some trees, shrubs, and perennials provide short or intermittent periods of color, annuals provide instant color and continue non-stop for a long period of time. Most begin blooming in early spring and don’t stop until first frost. Others are planted in fall and bloom until early summer.
- Annuals come in a wide range of flower colors, growth habits, and sizes. Some are prized for their colorful foliage rather than their blooms. There are varieties for sun or shade areas making it easy to find an annual for any landscape setting including beds, borders, window boxes, hanging baskets and ground cover.
Using growth habits in the landscape
- One great advantage of annual flowers is the flexibility they offer in landscape design. Beds and containers can easily be changed each growing season to create an entirely new look.
- When creating an annual bed with a variety of annuals, tall upright annuals should occupy the center of an island planting or the back of a bed or border that is located against a wall, fence or building. Use medium size mounding plants in the middle and the shortest trailing plants in the front.
- To make a huge visual impact, plant the same variety and color annual in one area. This is commonly referred to as a mass planting.
- In combination planters, use tall annuals as the centerpiece surrounded by mounding varieties with contrasting flowers and foliage. Then add trailing varieties to cascade over the edge of the planter.
- Annuals are often added to perennial gardens in the same way to supply additional color and fill gaps between perennial blooming cycles.
Beds and Borders, Container, Mass Planting, Color Accent
- Compact tuberous perennial
- Large, colorful double flowers
- Blooms from spring through fall
- Ideal for containers or borders