Starting Petunias Early - Knowledgebase Question

Coventry, CT
Avatar for resop3
Question by resop3
February 8, 1998
When should I start my petunias from seed indoors? (I live in Connecticut.) If I start them indoors, will I get flowers sooner?

Answer from NGA
February 8, 1998
Petunias are wonderful for their range of flower color and long season of bloom. In generaly, you should start your petunia seeds about 8 to 10 weeks before the last frost date. Since the last frost is around the end of April in your area, start seeds in mid to late February. You could probably sow them as early as late January, as long as you have an excellent growing environment for the seedlings -- a cool place with bright light. Otherwise, the plants will likely falter before you can get them in the ground.

Petunias can take up to 3 weeks to germinate, so patience is required. Sow the seeds on the surface of the growing medium and keep the seed flats in the light and in a warm location (70-80F) until germination, then place them under bright lights in a cool (60-70F) room. Transplant the seedlings when they have the second set of true leaves and pinch back the young plants to make them bushier.

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