Have you noticed that my blog is brimming with instructions on how to grow flowers? Of course, I don’t mean to stop, there are still more to come, but let’s take one step at a time, shall we? Today, I will show you how to grow zinnia flowers.
These resistant and colorful flowers are ideal for almost every garden. They won’t require much care, and if you are a beginner expect to learn a lot about gardening overall. Naturally, besides vibrant color, zinnia flowers might attract a butterfly or two as well.
What Should I Know About Zinnia?
Although these flowers are pretty standard and can be seen in a lot of gardens, there are still some things which you should know. After all, common knowledge is always a good thing; you can have a more comprehensive image of this plant.
As you can see, these flowers won’t require much of your attention. Perhaps the best thing about them is that they are very versatile, and will grow wherever you plant them. There is an interesting thing when it comes to sowing, but more about that later.
What Will Be Needed For Planting And Maintaining?
Lucky for you, there are only a few things which will be required, and it is likely that you don’t have them. Tools and equipment used are more or less standard, so if you are growing at least something in your garden, you have the essential items.
As I said, there are two things (last ones on this short list) which you probably don’t have. However, a quick trip to the garden center will solve the matter of seeds, and when it comes to compost or manure, you can always make some in your garage.
The choice of seeds is entirely up to you, so buy whichever suits your preferences. I can recommend you Dreamland Series which are small in size but have lovely flowers, or if you prefer tall varieties, go with State Fair Series. Ultimately, you can take several cultivars and make a cute pattern.
How Should I Prepare For Seeding?
Prep time for sowing zinnias is rather short. All of the steps are the same regardless if you are growing them in your backyard, or in a container.
First of all, the location is essential. Keep in mind that these flowers need a lot of sunlight, so choose the site according to this fact. Of course, if you are planning a pattern, think about the plants which will be in its vicinity. Zinnias need space to maintain airflow, so don’t go with the crowded layout.
Some of the flowers are possible to start indoors and transfer to the garden after germinating process had begun. However, for these plants, there is no need for doing so. Zinnias are fast to grow, and in about a week, there will be first sprouts appearing.
Naturally, since zinnias can sustain hot weather, they are somewhat vulnerable to low temperatures. They are best sown in spring after frosts had long passed. In any case, you won’t make a mistake if you wait a bit more to be sure that there will be no nasty surprises.
You can use this time to add organic matter to the soil and make it fluffy and loose. Your new flowers won’t tolerate a lot of water, so manure or compost will improve this aspect of the ground. A few inches is more than enough, and break top layer of the soil in the process.
Is Sowing A Hard Thing To Do?
Generally speaking, the process of planting the seeds is not such difficult thing to do. However, there are a few things which need to be done afterward, but those aren’t too difficult neither.
It is best to plant the seeds in rows, where there will be about 2 feet space between each row. In general, zinnias need around 6” of space between plants, but you might want to read the label of the seed bag, to see how much space precisely do your chosen variety needs.
The seeds are planted at very shallow depth; 1/4“ is recommended, since anything deeper than that will prevent the sprouting. Since zinnias are highly dependable on the sunlight, if there isn’t enough of it, sprouting will be halted.
In the beginning, plant a few seeds at each 6”. After a while, they will progress and grow, if everything was in order. Once they reach about 3” of height, thin the plants so that there is from 6-18” of space.
This will improve the air flow which I have already mentioned, and can prevent several kinds of diseases to appear.
How Should I Maintain My Zinnias, And Are There Any Pests?
When it comes to maintenance, you should look after a few things. The picture above is what you need to avoid doing. Water should be applied to the soil, and if it gets to the foliage, it will increase chances of diseases and pests to appear.
Deadheading is something you will have to do, to prolong flowering time. It is not difficult, and you can also collect seeds from dry flowers. Moreover, zinnias will replant themselves, which means that there are high chances that you will have another batch of flowers the following year.
As for the pests, you can expect to have caterpillars in your garden, along with spider mites. Those usually move on, but if they plan on staying, here are some organic pest control tips you can use to your advantage.
So, I have shown you how to grow zinnia flowers, and I hope that it is not a difficult thing to do. If you stick to these guidelines, you will have an abundance of flowers in no time, I’m sure of it.
As always, if you have questions, thoughts or advice, all of those are more than welcome in the comment section below.