One of the simplest flowers to plant, zinnias grow quickly and provide a lot of blooms. Additionally, they will continue to bloom right up until the first fall hard frost. Consider trying zinnia flowers this year to add a huge splash of color to your yard.
Since zinnias are annuals, they will only produce blooms and seeds for one season before dying. The original plant will not reappear the following year. They are excellent for use as a cutting flower or as food for butterflies since they have vivid, solitary, daisy-like flowerheads on a single, tall stem.
Types of Zinnias
Zinnia elegans, the most widely grown zinnia species, has been developed to produce a large number of distinctive variants.
Single, semidouble, or double zinnia blooms are the three most common varieties. The number of petal rows and whether or not the flower’s center is visible serve to distinguish between these forms:
- A single row of petals and the center are both visible on single-flowered zinnias.
- Petal rows abound on double-flowered zinnias, and their centers are hidden.
- Between the two are semidouble-flowered zinnias, which have several rows of petals but discernible cores.
In addition to these shapes, zinnia flowers also occur in “beehive,” “button,” and “cactus” forms. Additionally, the plants themselves come in various heights: taller types function best as a garden bed’s background, while shorter varieties are useful as a border. There is a zinnia for every garden, in fact!
In an annual or mixed border garden, plant zinnias. Smaller zinnias work well as window boxes, edging, or in other containers.
To have a lot of flowers all season long, choose a place that receives full sun (6 to 8 hours of sunlight every day). Additionally, later in the season, foliar diseases like powdery mildew can be avoided by planting in an area with sufficient air circulation.
Although zinnias can grow in a variety of soil types, they prefer organically rich, well-draining soil. The optimal pH range for soil is between 5.5 and 7.5. The blooms will grow more quickly if compost (humus) is added to the soil. Find out more about soil improvements and getting the soil ready for planting.
When to Plant Zinnias
- Because they dislike being transplanted, it is advised that you start your zinnia plants from seed directly in the garden bed. If the correct circumstances are present, they will develop quite quickly from seed.
- It should be noted that zinnias can be grown from seed inside if you like. Just make sure to transfer them gently and young.
- Because zinnias are delicate to frost, wait to plant them until after the last frost in your area. See the frost dates in your area.
- Zinnias can tolerate daily temperatures as low as 60F (16C), although a range of 7484F (2328C) is ideal.
- To prolong the flowering time, sow a new crop of seeds every week or so for a few weeks.
How to Plant Zinnias
- Depending on the kind, place plants 4 to 24 inches apart. (Many common kinds are planted 2 feet between rows and 6 inches apart within the row.) For information about each variety, consult the seed packet’s back.
- Plant zinnia seeds no deeper than 1/4 inch.
- The majority of zinnia cultivars will produce seedlings in just 4 to 7 days, but it may take up to two months or more for blooms to appear (depending on planting site and climate).
- To promote air circulation, thin seedlings when they are three inches tall, spacing them 6 to 18 inches apart. As a result, powdery mildew is less likely to grow.
- To promote development and blossoms, keep the soil’s moisture level moderate and apply a mild fertilizer.
- Deadhead zinnias once they have finished blooming to facilitate the development of new blossoms.
- Since zinnias are annuals, they will perish with the first fall hard cold. Let the final blooms of the season fully mature before dispersing their seeds if you want them to reseed.
Zinnias still not your thing? In your garden, try them out for the following six reasons:
- With cultivars from the Dreamland Series, you can have a full-sized flower on a little plant. These zinnias are compact and dwarf, with stems that are 812 inches tall and totally double flowerheads that can be up to 4 inches across with a variety of colors.
- The dwarf, spreading cultivars of the Thumbelina Series have weather-resistant, solitary or semi-double flowerheads in a variety of hues. Their stems can reach a length of 6 inches, and their petals are 1-1/4″ wide.
- One of the largest and tallest of them all, the State Fair Series has huge, double flowerheads that measure 3 inches in diameter. Stems can reach a height of 30 inches.
- Typically, it takes zinnias 60 to 70 days from seed to flower (though it depends on conditions and variety). They are fantastic in a bunch of flowers!
- The tiny, narrow-leafed zinnias are great for hanging baskets and also make lovely dried flowers.
- Zinnias are considered to represent memories of those who have passed away. Discover more about the significance of flowers here.
- Zinnias may be harmed by bacterial wilt, powdery mildew, and bacterial and fungal spots. To prevent illness, keep leaves from getting too damp and correctly space your plants.
- Problems can also be brought on by caterpillars, mealybugs, and spider mites. Spraying should be avoided unless there is a real infestation because some leaf damage is not a problem.
- Thanks to their resistance to deer, zinnias may be able to prevent surrounding flowers from being eaten.
How are zinnias prepared for winter?
Heirloom zinnias naturally reproduce, but you may do it yourself by preserving the seeds. This gives you the opportunity to start a fresh flower bed or add zinnias to a garden layout of your choice. The zinnia seeds from the toughest, most vibrant types should be saved. It is not advisable to save seeds from plants that are disease-prone, spindly, or fragile. Let the zinnias finish their life cycle and dry out. When petals have fallen off and the flower head has transformed into a seed pod, they are ready to be harvested. A tiny paper bag should be placed over the flower head. Alternatively, the flower head can be chopped and suspended in the bag upside down. The zinnia seeds land in the paper bag, which can subsequently be used to store them in an envelope that is clearly marked.
Do zinnias return in the spring?
No, zinnias don’t come back every year as they are annual plants. In other words, the flowers go through their full life cycle in a single year.
Because they succumb to frosts so quickly, zinnias are extremely susceptible to them. You must either resow every year or allow some of the zinnia blooms to naturally wither and drop to the ground so that the seeds will naturally germinate in order to have flowers in your garden every year.
To gather and store flower seed for springtime planting:
- Allow the blossoms to wither.
- Cut the blossoms off.
- Shake and massage the seeds carefully while holding a bag below.
- Save in seed packets with labels for planting the next spring or summer.
It’s not too difficult to cultivate zinnias because of how simple and low-maintenance they are, especially considering the reward of the lovely blooms that appear in the late summer.
Do zinnias self-seed for the next season?
Will Zinnias Self-Reseed? Here, the quick response is “yes” There is a fair possibility that zinnia seeds will germinate and thrive the following spring if the plants are allowed to blossom and set seed.
Zinnias can they be perennial?
Are zinnias a perennial plant? In warm regions with ideal climates, zinnias may act like perennials. In growth zones 911, zinnias can be particularly referred to as perennials.
Wait for the Zinnia Flowers to Dry Before Harvesting
The zinnia flower heads should be allowed to finish drying on the plant. When a bloom is ready to be picked, it will be dry to the touch and dark brown in color. An early attempt to harvest a blossom will provide immature seeds that won’t sprout.
Cut or remove the dried zinnia blossoms from the plant. Unless you don’t mind a combination full of surprises, make sure to keep kinds separated and labeled!
Harvested seed heads should be placed on a screen to dry completely on all sides. Depending on the moisture content and seed head, this could take a week.
Release the Zinnia Seeds
On a clear, level surface where you may work to collect the seeds, spread some paper towels. A paper plate should be placed there, and the variety name should be marked with a marker immediately on the plate.
To release the seeds from a dried zinnia bloom, gently “flail” the blossom, peel it apart, or rub it between your fingers over a paper plate. The arrow-shaped seeds are tiny. Some may still be joined to a petal’s base. In that instance, carefully remove the seed. Repeat this procedure with each dried flower you have, tossing the petals and saving just the seeds. Keep the different types apart.
Store the Zinnia Seeds
After the seeds have dried, store them for later use in a paper bag or envelope. Unless you don’t mind combining different zinnia varieties in your garden, separate the seeds for each variety if you have many. To help you remember what’s inside each envelope, label it.
Put the seed envelope in a glass jar with a lid and keep it out of direct sunlight in a cool, dry area. The closet works best. You can plant your seeds outside once the threat of frost has passed for the upcoming growth season.
Can I merely sprinkling zinnia seeds?
Every summer, I overflow my gardens with flowering flowers that last until the fall. It’s lovely, reasonably priced, and best of all, requires little upkeep!
The Zinnia is my secret flower; it’s a magnificent, robust flower that looks fantastic in the garden and makes quick bouquets.
In the spring and summer, you can purchase zinnia plants at nurseries, but it would cost hundreds of dollars to get the same level of coverage as I do with only $15 in seeds! Park Seed sells packets of 50 seeds for $3, and I’ve always had success with them sprouting.
This post is not sponsored, please note. I’ve been a customer of this business for 5 years and am a big fan.
Zinnias are surprisingly simple to grow from seed and require very little maintenance once they are established. Despite the harsh sun, the clay soil, and my inability to water them frequently, they thrive in my front garden.
Early summer to fall, they are in full flower. On November 1 of the previous year, my garden was still partially colored. In my garden, the Zinna Park’s Pick Mix variety grows 4 to 5 feet tall.
Another advantage? They draw butterflies and birds. The Monarch Butterflies (an endangered breed), Swallowtail Butterflies, and Goldfinch birds have been my garden’s most thrilling guests.
Even planting is a simple operation. I lay down new mulch before scattering the Zinnia seeds in the desired locations. I just spread them; I don’t think about spacing or anything. I add a tiny bit more mulch to the area as cover once the seeds are planted. If there isn’t enough rain, I do water them every few days for about a month or two until the seedlings are well-established.
What Seeds Are Best?
Pick of Zinnia Park Mix the tallest, strongest, and simplest to grow Zinnias. These are positioned behind the house in the garden since they can grow to a height of five feet. Great around fences as well.
I planted a small “dwarf variant” of Magellan Mix Zinnia Seeds around the front of the garden. The bushy, 1.5-foot-tall blossoms are short and slender. fantastic along borders and pathways.
To create the most beautiful zinnia garden:
- Because the leaves are prone to mildewing, water beneath the foliage with a soaker hose, or water in the morning.
- Remove the dead flowers to promote new blooming (called “deadheading)
- To improve plant spacing, transplant some seedlings after they have grown. (I don’t do this all the time.
- To maintain the garden neat, think about staking the tallest plants. The strongest ones can be staked first, followed by tying up the weaker ones with twine along a line that extends to the stake. If they grow too big, they may topple over, and they may appear unkempt, as they did in my garden last summer:
Ordering now will ensure that your seeds arrive by April. Try just one package of seeds for now if you’re unsure. Although seeds can be started indoors, I’ve never been good enough to keep them alive. A few weeks after the last frost, I simply planted the seeds in the ground. In the VA/DC/MD/DE region, April is the best month.
Do you reduce zinnia plantings in the fall?
For a variety of reasons, including protection, adding winter interest, and assisting local animals, a few common perennials should be left in place all winter.
Plants to Cut Back In Spring:
- yearly wildflowers Leaving annual wildflowers like sunflowers, zinnias, or cosmos up through the winter encourages them to set seed and return the following year. Cut them back and leave the debris on the ground if you can’t bear to leave them up (or if you live in a HOA and are required to do so). For the following season, this ought to assist them scatter some seeds.
- To draw and feed birds throughout the winter, Echinacea (Coneflower) and Rudbeckia (Black Eyed Susan) should be left up until April.
- To provide height and interest, Sedum and ornamental grasses should be left in place all winter.
- As the foliage helps to shield their crowns, Butterfly Weed (Asclepias), Ferns, and Heuchera (Coral Bells) should be left till spring.
Depending on the variety, hydrangeas can either be clipped in the late winter/early spring or right after they have stopped blooming. Hydrangeas that flower on older growth, such as “Endless Summer,” should be clipped as soon as the flowers have faded. It is best to prune hydrangeas that bloom on new growth in the late winter or early spring, such as the well-known “Annabelle” and “Limelight.” This is why it’s wise to keep plant tags or make a list of the different types you have in your yard.
Fall cleanup can sometimes seem daunting, but with all of the right information at your fingertips it can be done in just a few short hours.