Nothing beats having a garden full of beautiful flowers. If you still have room in your containers, window boxes, or flower beds here are some flowers that can be grown from seeds planted now and will be blooming by mid-summer.  While these flowers will add color to your garden they also can be used in floral arrangements.

Here are six flowers that will be blooming in no time:

 

California Poppy

These beautiful flowers are generally known for being orange or yellow but, there are other varieties of Poppies that come in red, pink, and white.  As the name suggests this plant is known for being the state flower of California.  It can be grown in hardiness zones 5 – 10. It is considered an annual flower but since it self-seeds easily it is often treated as a perennial.  They prefer dry soil conditions and will not grow in wet soil. Once established they are drought tolerant and there is no need to fertilize them.   They are a sun lover and the blossoms do remain closed when it is too cloudy or the sun is down.  They bloom April through June.  Keep the seed moist until it germinates which is usually around 2 weeks or so after planting.

Cosmos

Cosmos are an annual flower that can be grown anywhere in the United States. They are easy to grow from seed and are not bothered by insects or diseases. Cosmos are attractive to butterflies, hummingbirds, and unfortunately, rabbits who find them to be quite delicious!  Cosmos have a reputation for being so easy to work with and tolerate a variety of soil conditions.  They are at their best in dry conditions where they get full sun all day long. They do well in the heat of summer and don’t need additional watering once they are established.  They also do not require fertilization and in fact too much fertilizer will give you a lot of leaves and not many flowers. While not required, removing the dead flowers will increase the speed with which old flowers are replaced by new ones and you can collect the seed in the fall to plant again the following spring.

Flax

Flax is a wildflower that is native to California but can be grown in other parts of the United States. It is an annual flower that grows 1 to 2 feet tall and is known for its pretty five-petal flower. The plant is a source for linseed oil, which comes from its seeds. The plant will start blooming in May and will continue through September. The flowers bloom in pretty shades of blue and scarlet. While the flower lasts only one day, its prolific blooming will make sure you have plenty of blooms.  Flax performs best when planted in full sun and in well-drained soil that is not too rich.  This plant is also drought tolerant

Nasturtium

One of my favorite flowers is Nasturtiums. This plant has a well-deserved reputation as an easy flower to grow. They are the perfect plant to grow with your children as the seed, which is about the size of a pea, is easily handled by small fingers. Once they sprout Nasturtiums grow very quickly and they are also very flexible in that they can be used in containers such as a window box, as a bedding plant, as an annual groundcover, or as a vine climbing up a trellis or cascading over a wall. The flowers come in variations of yellow, orange, and red and while the flowers are typically what gardeners focus on the foliage is very interesting in its own right. Nasturtiums are not fussy and will bloom prolifically when grown in full sun and in soil that drains well. As a matter of fact, they will often perform even better in poor soil and you don’t want to fertilize this plant or you’ll get a lot of leaves and few flowers.

Sunflower

The meaning of sunflower is rooted in its genus Helianthus- helios meaning sun and anthos meaning flower. There are 70 different species of flowers. Should Sunflowers be considered a flower or a vegetable? While they are often grown for their impressive flowers they also are cultivated for their edible seeds. Regardless of their classification this is a fun plant to grow! They got their name as during the day the flowers always turn to face the sun. They are not fussy about soil conditions but do benefit from some mulch and a little extra water in dry spells. They are relatively pest and disease-free and while we’re all probably familiar with the 9-foot tall varieties there are some you can grow in containers too! This is another fun plant to grow with your kids! 

Zinnia

Zinnias are a fast-growing annual and very easy to grow.  They bloom from spring to fall and come in pretty much every color but blue.  There are also bi-color varieties. Pollinators are attracted to their bright, cheerful flowers.  If you are a beginner, these are an excellent choice to plant.  Another great reason to try growing these flowers are they are low maintenance.  They can be grown seasonally in any garden zone.  There are dwarf varieties that grow 6 to 12 inches tall and others that can grow up to 4 feet.  For best results, plant zinnias in well-drained soil and a sunny location that gets at least 6 hours of sun.  While they will tolerate dry conditions, it is best to water them regularly.

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