Container Plants for North - Knowledgebase Question

Cleveland, OH
Avatar for ldfcao
Question by ldfcao
March 20, 1998
Can you please suggest the hardiest and most appropriate annuals for the following conditions:

-northern climate
-short growing season
-seeds to be started indoors (with no fancy equipment)
-to be planted in window boxes
-one type should be a flowering vine
-others should not be climbers

THANK YOU!! This is a great service!

Answer from NGA
March 20, 1998
I live in Northern Vermont, so I can sympathize with your short season. I had great success with morning glories last year--especially the ones I planted in almost pure compost in a container. You can start them indoors a few weeks before you plan to setthem out, or direct seed them.

For window boxes, I like nasturtium, zinnias (short varieties), alyssum, dwarf asters, and miniature sunflowers (all can be direct seeded).

Window box classics, like petunias, pansies, snapdragons, and impatiens, should be started indoors about 10 weeks before you plan to set them out. You should probably have a convenient seed-starting set up with fluorescent lights if you plan to try these.

Burpee does sell plants, as well as seeds. You might considerpurchasing transplants of some of the types that require starting seeds early indoors. For example, they carry various color impatiens (for shaded spots), heliotrope, alyssum, portulaca, and snapdragons. I hope this is helpful!

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