Marigolds and zinnias for Southern California gardens(Read article summary)
Among the most colorful annual flowers are tall marigolds and zinnias. They're also easy to grow. Here are some that will be successful in Southern California.
Courtesy of All-America Selections
Warmer days and nights mean it’s time to get out in the Southern California garden and plant.
This month, most annual flowers can be started from seed sown directly in the soil. Front-runners for beauty and cut flowers are zinnias and marigolds. Today’s varieties of these two favorite flowers are almost foolproof, and you can bet on great color and a showy flower garden as well as bountiful cut flowers for indoors.
Try these varieties
Among the good zinnias are several open-pollinated varieties, including Cactus Mix, Whirligig, and California Giants.
All of these varieties of marigolds and zinnias are easy to grow, and very rewarding in the garden and for bouquets.
Some of the dwarf kinds of zinnias and marigolds will make spectacular borders and massed plantings. Try the new Zahara series of zinnia, and see the All-America Selections winner, Magellan [pictured above].
The list of good dwarf marigolds is long but among the best are Queen Sophia, Aurora, and Janie.
Beyond marigolds and zinnias
Although marigolds and zinnias are the easiest annuals, you'll also want to try some other flowers, too, such as any of the multitude of petunias, melampodiums, rudbeckias, gaillardias, Dahlberg daisies, and cosmos.
You’ll find many more varieties from which to choose on seed racks and in garden catalogs than you will as started plants. Of course, started plants are easier, faster to bloom, and will bring the flower garden to a sparkling reality much faster.
Eiither way, now''s the time to just get out and do it!