The Q&A Archives: Colorful, Low Growing, Annual That Grows Fast And Spreads

Question: Could you give me some examples of annuals that I can mass plant that will spreadout and grow fast, something low to medium height with lots of blooms, very colorful that will tolerate full sun?

Answer: There are many annuals that thrive in full sun, but very few spread widely, or if they do spread, it can take quite a while for them to do so. Some to consider might be the "Wave" series of petunias, the verbena "Homestead Purple" (perennial in warmer climates but not reliably so in Gettysburg), creeping zinnia (Saintvitalia procumbens), and some of the newer tropicals being marketed as annuals. A good choice might be the newer sun-loving coleus varieties which provide steady trouble-free color by virtue of their foliage. If pinched back regularly these will form attractive wider, bushier, medium height plants. Keep in mind that all of these plants will perform best in carefully prepared soil with high organic matter content, good fertility, and adequate moisture. Using several inches of organic mulch will help to conserve water as well as feed the soil over time when it breaks down. I hoope this gives you some ideas.

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