The Procrastinator's Guide to Quick-Germinating Seeds for Blooming Beds by Summer
Hope isn't lost for those of us who spent fall watching football and winter indoors instead of prepping our garden for spring. Gather a few seed packets of these summer blooms and get started this weekend.
For early-summer blooms, plant seeds in rich, moist soil following a good rain after the last spring frost. The stalks may require staking as they grow tall and top-heavy. Cut sunflowers for seasonal arrangements.
Lollygagging gardeners can wait until late spring or even early summer to sow the seeds of heat-loving zinnias. Generously water and fertilize for bright color until fall.
Spread quick-sprouting spider flower seeds in warm soil along the fence line of your garden because they self-sow rapidly and grow into large, showy shrubs. Snip a few blossoming stems for textural bouquets.
Deadhead spent flowers to make marigolds last from
summer until fall's first frost. Fill a vase with a cluster of these aromatic blooms.
Plant easy-to-grow nasturtiums in hanging baskets with sandy, well-drained soil. Get moving on these classics—they prefer cooler temperatures and will wither in peak summer heat. Coax the seeds into sprouting faster by soaking them in water overnight before planting.
Colorful cosmos attract both birds and butterflies. Preserve the vibrant blooms by cutting as soon as they open and placing in cold water.
Brighten up beds with china aster's fluffy pompon-like blooms. Give them moist, well-drained soil and full sun. Be careful not to overwater, which makes these flowers susceptible to disease.
Natives of tropical and subtropical regions, morning glories perform well in a hot Southern climate. Speed up the growth of their hard seeds by soaking them overnight or making a small cut in the coating before planting.
Give low-maintenance blanket flowers good drainage, and that's about all you'll have to do. They thrive in heat, don't need regular water, and are deer resistant.
Bring on the sweltering temps for Dahlberg daises, which thrive in the Coastal and Tropical South' heat. Sow seeds in well-drained soil for blooms from late summer through fall.