Summer is coming to an end and the temperature outside is cooling. If you are looking for work to do in your flower bed, here are some flowers that need to be planted in the fall. You can prepare your garden to have loads of beautiful blooms the next year. Many of these will continue to bloom for many seasons but must first be planted in the cool fall weather.
Flowers that Need to be Planted in the Fall
Flowering bulb plants that bloom in the early spring like tulips are best planted in the fall. This is because in order to bloom in the spring they require an extended amount of time in cool temperatures. During the winter, your tulip bulbs will undergo key biochemical processes that they need to produce their vibrant blooms. So, as the weather starts to cool and autumn arrives, it is the perfect time to plant your tulips. Just make sure to check your forecast to ensure the high summer temperatures have passed and get to gardening.
Daffodils are another spring time bulb like tulips. Just like tulips, these are flowers that need to be planted in the fall. During the winter, the cold temperatures will cause daffodil bulbs to go through important chemical changes similar to tulips. So, to get the perfect daffodils for your garden, autumn is the time for action. Once the soil has cooled from the high heat and the risk of a heatwave has passed, sow your daffodil bulbs and begin the wait for spring blooms.
These star-shaped spring blooms are wonderful to look at. They are another spring time flowering bulb that should optimally be planted in autumn once the weather has cooled. They will thrive in the cool soil and prepare themselves to bloom the following spring. The cold winter months are also necessary to for hyacinths to output such wonderful flowers. If you’re a fan of all three of these spring bulbs, you can get to work this fall planting them throughout your garden.
Crocuses are among the flowers that need to be planted in the fall. The soil temperatures need to drop below 60 degrees Fahrenheit before you should consider putting crocus bulbs in the ground. They will need time in the cool autumn and cold winter soil to develop their root systems. Crocuses require a cold winter in order to bloom in the early spring. In fact, they can only be grown in zones 3-8 and will not survive in warmer areas. If you want these later winter miracle blooms in your garden or yard, fall time is when you must get put them into the soil.
if you are looking to plant rose bulbs to start your very own rose bushes, it is best to do so in cooler weather. This means doing so in the spring or fall. Rose bushes will struggle to establish their roots in the heat of the summer. In warmer climates in particular, it is best to plant them in autumn after the worst of the summer heat is behind you. This will allow the bulbs to establish a vigorous root system. Just make sure that you plant them at least six weeks before the risk of frost occurs. Roses must finish rooting before they go dormant for the winter.
Peonies are often referred to as thorn-less roses and just like roses, their bulbs need time in cool soil to create a healthy root system. Therefore, these are flowers that need to be planted in the fall or spring. The intense heat of the summer can stress the roots of this plant when it is still growing its roots. Planting after the summer has passed is the perfect way to avoid this risk. Just make sure that you get them planted six weeks before the ground is at risk of freezing. You want them to be fully acclimated to their new home before a long winter nap.
This flowering bush is similar to roses and peonies. The difference is that this plant is started through propagation instead of a bulb. However, it also needs time in cool soil to develop its root system and will struggle if planted in hot summer weather. The spring and fall are the best time to plant a transplanted hydrangea bush to avoid the scorching heat of midsummer. The fall is the perfect time to plant store bought hydrangeas for blooms next season or two divide up your own larger plants. Give them at least six weeks before the first frost to get settled in. Next spring your hydrangeas will be giving you gorgeous flowers.
Last but not least to be discussed among the flowers that need to be planted in the fall is astilbe. A newly acquired astilbe plant will quickly establish itself in your garden, or if you already have one it can be propagated very easily. However, this fast growing plant does require cooler temperatures when it is first planted. Hot temperatures will put too much stress on the plant and cause it to dry out if it has not established a solid root system yet. For that reason, you must plant astilbe in the spring or fall. Fall is a great time to divide your existing plants after a full season of growing and give the new transplants time to get comfortable before winter arrives. Like most of the plants mentioned, do this six weeks before frost may arrive.
The mass cane plant (Dracaena fragrans), also known as a corn plant, is an easy to grow houseplant. Due to its ease of growth, it is an excellent plant for beginners to grow in their homes. The plant grows in a similar way and has resemblance to a palm tree. In this article, we will break down how to care for a mass cane plant in your home.
Table of Contents
About the Mass Cane Plant
The Mass Cane Plant is native to tropical areas in Africa. This type of plant is a variety of corn plant, which you will also find in many other unique varieties. The plant is a low maintenance plant that grows with a long stalked stem and brightly colored striped green leaves at the top. This plant is a slow growing plant that is known to be very tolerant of mild neglect and bounces back well. It is important to learn how to care for a mass cane plant in order to keep it thriving in your household.
Light and Water Requirements
Light and water are two important requirements to master when learning how to care for a mass cane plant. The mass cane plant does well in filtered light that is moderate or bright. The leaves will burn in the sun easily, so it’s important to not keep it in direct sunlight for too long. However, this plant is tolerant of lower light conditions, which makes it a good indoor plant for many areas of the home. If kept in low light conditions for a long time, it will eventually have an impact on the plant and cause the growth to slow and leaves to grow more slender. You will find that this plant grows better and more quickly in conditions of moderate light.
You should check the mass cane plant’s soil once a week. When the top inch of soil is dry to the touch, it is time to water the plant. This plant does not like being overwatered and it may lead to root rot. The more light the plant receives, the more often you will have to water the plant. When watering, be sure to moisten the soil completely. Then remove any excess water that drains out of the bottom of the planter.
Temperature and Humidity Levels
This plant is a tropical plant, so providing the correct temperature and humidity levels is an important part of how to care for a mass cane plant. The optimum temperature for a mass cane plant is between 65° to 80°F. The plant can withstand temperatures down to 50°F but should not be kept in those temperatures for long.
The mass cane plant thrives in humidity levels of 40% to 50% due to it being a tropical plant. Normal household conditions will normally be fine for the plant to thrive. However, be sure to maintain humidity levels throughout the winter. When the heat is on during the winter to to keep your home warm, it leads to drier air that lacks moisture. Due to this, this plant will do well near a humidifier or in a room that has higher humidity such as a bathroom. If the plant cannot be placed in an area with higher humidity, mist the leaves once or twice a week.
Tip: If the humidity inside of the house remains too low for an extended period of time, the tips of the leaves may begin to turn brown.
Type of Soil and Fertilizer
The best type of soil for the mass cane plant is well draining and nutrient rich soil. The mass cane plant can handle a variety of soils, so a good store bought potting mix will do just fine. Additionally, you can add perlite to the soil to increase the drainage and aeration of the soil.
The mass cane does not require too much fertilization, as it is susceptible to over fertilization. This can hurt the plant, so it is important to fertilize sparingly. Most corn plants often do fine without any fertilization. You will want to only fertilize the plant during the growing season of spring and summer. Fertilize once every month or two with a balanced water soluble fertilizer that is diluted. Optimally, a NPK ratio of 10-10-10 or 20-20-20 will be sufficient for the plant to get plenty of nutrients. Do not fertilize during the fall and winter months.
Repotting a Mass Cane Plant
Part of how to care for a mass cane plant is repotting the plant when it’s needed. These cane plants will not need to be repotted often because of their slow growth. You can expect to have to repot the plant once every two or three years. The planter size will depend on the current size of the plant. A good rule of thumb to go by is to repot the plant into a new pot two inches larger than it’s current container. This allows for plenty of new growth to occur over the next few years.
Make sure that the bottom of the planter has drainage holes. Drainage holes are important to allow excess water to escape out of the plant’s soil. Without these holes, the plant’s roots will be left wet and it will lead to root rot.
Pruning the Mass Cane Plant
Pruning is a straightforward and simple process that is essential in how to care for a mass cane plant. This will help keep your plant looking nice, remove any dead leaves, and maintain a proper height. You will need sharp garden shears or scissors. It’s best practice to disinfect your pruning tools before using them to reduce the spread of any diseases. Follow these easy steps to keep your mass cane plant pruned and maintained!
Inspect: Check the plant for any browning or yellowing leaves. These leaves will not turn green again and should be pruned away. The discolored leaves take energy away from the plant that could be utilized elsewhere. If your plant is becoming too tall, you may opt to trim new branches of leaves off or part of the stem below the nodes for propagation.
Removal: Using your garden shears, cut the leaves that you want to remove as close to the base of the leaf and stem of the plant as possible. If you want to remove brown tips on leaves, you may cut the discolored tip off at an angle to keep the natural look of the leaf.
Disposal: Remove all cut leaves and throw them away. Do not allow the dead leaves to stay in the plant’s pot for this will encourage pests and disease to the plant.
Disinfect: After you have pruned away all necessary leaves, clean the tools that were used. This will prevent any future disease transfer between plants.
Propagation of the Mass Cane Plant
The mass cane plant is propagated with stem cuttings. This makes duplicating your plant quite easy and gives you a good reason to prune it. To start, you will need a healthy adult plant to get stem cuttings from. Do not propagate from a diseased plant, as you may pass the problem onto the new plant. To propagate follow these simple instructions:
Locate a stem that has at least one node, but optimally a couple of nodes for a greater chance of successful propagation. A node is the location where a cluster of leaves or branch grows from.
Make a clean cut at a 45 degree diagonal angle below one of the nodes.
Plant the cutting into well draining soil, similar to the type used for the parent plant. Make sure you plant the cutting a couple inches deep to provide stability.
Place the plant in a location that gets indirect sunlight and make sure the soil gets plenty of water.
Alternatively, you may place your cuttings into a container of water. Submerge the lower half in the water and make sure a couple of nodes are within the water. Make sure to keep the leaves dry and out of the water. Once roots have grown from a node and gotten to be a few inches long, you can plant the cutting in soil.
This plant is slow growing, so rooting may take up to two months. Be patient!
Common Issues with a Mass Cane Plant
The mass cane plant is generally a low maintenance plant that does not experience many issues. However, there are a few problems that this plant can experience that you need to look out for. Keeping an eye out for any problematic signs is an important part of how to care for a mass cane plant.
Tips of leaves turning brown: This can indicate low humidity in the area that the mass cane plant is growing. Alternatively, this can be the cause of an irregular watering schedule, which has resulted in under or overwatering of the plant. Increase humidity and maintain a stable watering schedule avoid this issue.
Yellowing of leaves: This indicates a problem with overwatering, poor drainage, or root rot in the plant. Do not water your plant until the top inch of soil has dried. Be sure that the pot has drainage holes to allow for excess water to be removed.
Plant becoming leggy: The mass cane may grow too tall or have thinner stems if it is not receiving enough light. Additionally, this plant will grow too tall if not pruned back and maintained.
Yellow lines on edge of leaves or brown tip burn: This can occur due to a build up of fluoride within the soil. This plant is sensitive to high levels of fluoride. Fluoride levels will build up in the soil due to the excess fluoride that is in city water supplies. Try using distilled water if you are having this problem. Fluoride build up may also be coming from fluoride within any fertilizers that you are using.
Toxicity of Mass Cane Plant to Pets
The mass cane plant is nontoxic to humans, however, it is known to be toxic to cats and dogs. This plant should be kept away from any pets that you have in your house, especially small ones. If your pet ingests or chews on any part of this plant, it is important to monitor their symptoms and contact a vet immediately.
Determinate plants grow to maturity and produce a single harvest. In this article, we will discuss some of the best choices for determinate vegetables to add your garden this season. These vegetables are great because they generally grow to a specific size and are compact. Additionally, since they only produce once, you will only have to harvest the crop one time. This is convenient if you don’t have the time to keep harvesting crops throughout the whole growing season.
Best Determinate Vegetables
Bush Green Beans
Bush green beans are a perfect choice among determinate vegetables. They grow to a very compact size and can squeeze into any extra space in your garden without the risk of out growing nearby plants. Once they reach their full mature size, they will flower and produce plenty of beans. All of the beans will be ready around the same time, making harvest a breeze. You can even grow multiple crops in a single growing season by sowing new seeds after pulling the first crop out.
Radishes are a determinate plant that will go great in any garden. This pint size root crop gets no bigger than about a foot tall and reaches maturity in just 20-35 days. They are the perfect crop to plant where ever there is extra space in your garden. They wont compete with other plants and are easy to care for. Harvesting this crop is a quick and easy task that you will only need to do once. Radishes even deter many pests including cucumber beetles and squash bugs.
Another root crop that you can grow and harvest a singular time is carrots. This veggie grows fast and remains small. However, their fast growing foliage does a great job shading out weeds in the area that they are planted in. This means that you can choose to plant carrots in compact areas of your garden where other crops might overgrow the area. Once your carrots are ready to harvest, you can harvest them all at once and you’re done. They will even survive an early frost if you don’t find the time to get them out of ground immediately.
Parsnips are a sibling of carrots and the two share many qualities. This includes both being determinate vegetables. They grow just as fast as carrots and about the same size as well. If you are looking for a carrot alternative with a slightly different flavor, parsnips are an excellent choice. You can even grow both right along side each other and harvest them together.
An additional root crop worth mentioning when discussing determinate plants is beets. Like most root crops, beets will grow to maturity and will then be ready to be harvested in one swoop. This makes them great for canning as well because you can do the work all at once. Additionally, they are compact plants, which will only need a few inches between one another and a foot between rows. This makes finding a place for them in your garden effortless.
Most varieties of lettuce are determinate. They will grow and reach maturity before beginning to bolt and go to seed, however, they should be harvested before then. This means you will only need to harvest each plant once and it is a quick and easy process. Lettuce also prefers cool weather in the spring or fall, meaning they can be planted for either season. It will grow quickly before the summer heat or winter frost comes. If you are looking for easy determinate vegetables to plant and harvest quickly, lettuce is a great option.
Bush varieties of tomatoes are determinate and will only produce a single crop of tomatoes. There are some distinct advantages to determinate tomatoes compared to indeterminate varieties. They tend to grow shorter and are perfect for container planting. These plants are great choices if you have a small garden and limited space. Another benefit is that a single bush tomato plant will have all of its fruit ripen around the same time. This makes them excellent for saucing and canning because you will want many tomatoes to be ready at one time. Give bush tomato plants a try in your garden this year!
Nutrient packed broccoli is a single harvest option that you can add to your garden. This tasty green vegetable will grow to maturity during the cool spring or fall and should be harvested before it flowers. Often times, extreme heat or cold will trigger this process. Therefore, you should harvest your broccoli crop all at once before these conditions arrive. Making it a fantastic choice if you prefer one singular harvest.
Another amazing choice for determinate vegetables can be found in the brassica family. This unique and tasty option is Brussels sprouts. They will grow to about three feet in height and begin producing sprouts. Once the sprouts are the proper size and color, you can harvest the whole plant and you will be done. All of your Brussels sprout plants will probably be ready around the same time as well.
The final determinate option we will mention is onions. This flavorful vegetable is perfect for any garden. They do not grow very wide or tall, so finding a location in your garden to plant them will be a breeze. Once they are fully grown, you can harvest them and the crop will be done. You wont have to worry about having so many onions at once either because they store for a long while. Like most alliums, their strong smell also deters many pests. The other crops in your garden will appreciate their presence nearby.
Petunias are some of the most popular flowering annuals due to their beautiful blooms and because of how easy they are to grow. These plants are known for their abundant showy flowers. Petunias are one of the most common flowers that grow in hanging baskets, as they grow tons of cascading flowers that flow over the sides. Due to this vigorous growth, it’s important to learn about fertilizer for petunias in order to successfully grow them. Popular varieties of petunias to grow are Wave, Supercascade, Tidal Wave, Shock Wave and many more!
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Petunias will continue to flower throughout the entirety of the warmer months until the first frost. To keep these heavy bloomers producing continuous flowers throughout the season, it’s important to fertilize them on a regular schedule. This provides them with plenty of nutrients to keep growing successfully. These plants are notorious for being heavy feeders and requiring a lot of fertilization, especially for plants that are grown in containers. Abundant watering of container plants causes nutrients to get flushed out over time and deficiencies to begin if they are not regularly replaced.
How Often Do Petunias Need to be Fertilized?
You should begin your fertilization schedule for petunias 2 weeks after you plant them outdoors for the season. Doing this encourages their early growth and will help them get acclimated to the outdoors properly. As a general rule of thumb, fertilize your petunias once every 2 weeks. For spreading varieties, fertilize them once a week for optimal growth. Alternatively, you may opt to fertilize twice as often at half strength. This would provide your plants will continual nutrients in smaller doses.
Important Nutrients for PetuniaGrowth
You will find that every fertilizer has an NPK ratio on the container, which gives you vital information about the product. NPK stands for nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium, which are important nutrients for all plants. Understanding the role of these key ingredients and why they are in fertilizer for petunias is crucial.
Nitrogen: Helps with foliage growth of the leaves and vines. This nutrient assists in photosynthesis and keeping a plant healthy.
Phosphorous: An important nutrient for root growth, flower development, and nutrient movement.
Potassium: Potassium is imperative for overall plant health, color, and stress tolerance.
Start your plants within nutrient rich soil at the start of the growing season. A balanced fertilizer is sufficient for petunias, such as an NPK ratio of 8-8-8 or 10-10-10. This well rounded ratio will ensure that the petunias are receiving an adequate amount of each nutrient. This should work perfectly for maintaining petunias throughout the growing season.
You may also opt for a fertilizer that is specifically designed for petunias during their blooming stage. Many of these fertilizers include iron and other micronutrients that will help a plant from becoming deficient. You will mostly experience this in containers or hanging pots, as nutrients will get washed out over time from watering.
Fertilization Tips for Petunias
Fertilizer for petunias is an important part of growing this flower and promoting healthy growth and blooms. Here are some tips to help you achieve the best results:
Package Instructions: Always follow the package instructions on fertilizer for petunias. Many brands have different application guidelines. This will ensure that you do not over or under feed your plants, as well as help you avoid burning them.
Application: It’s always best to apply the fertilizer to the base of the plants. Avoid getting the fertilizer on the stem or leaves, as this can cause fertilizer burn on the plant.
Watering: Be sure to apply plenty of water to plants after fertilizing to break down the fertilizer and prevent any fertilizer burn.
Monitor: It’s important to keep a watchful eye on your petunia plants as they grow throughout the season, especially for container plants. Watch for any signs of deficiencies, such as yellowing of the leaves, lightening of the color, or a lack of production of new flowers. All of this can indicate a deficiency in a certain nutrient.
BestFertilizer For Petunias
There are many different types of fertilizer for petunias that you can buy. The type of fertilizer that you buy should reflect the condition of the plants. For example, you may opt for a higher phosphorus number to aid your petunia plants in the budding process and get more to grow. Depending on where your plants are at in their health and lifecycle, you may need to adjust your fertilizer choices.
Jack’s Classic Petunia Feed
Jack’s is a well known fertilizer brand and is often recommended for petunias. It has an NPK ratio of 20-6-22 and is specially designed for petunias. Specifically, it is perfect for varieties that grow in containers and hanging baskets. The fertilizer has added iron and micronutrients for hungry plants. This can help address some deficiencies that your plant may be experiencing such as a lack of iron.
Another one of the most commonly used fertilizers for flowers is Miracle-Gro Bloom Booster. This mix has an NPK ratio of 10-52-10 and can be used on a wide range of different flowers. This makes it a great choice for a garden with a variety of flowering plants. The high phosphorus levels are meant to boost budding and flowering. It is sure to give you a beautiful display of color from your garden.
This fertilizer is a good example of a balanced fertilizer, as the NPK ratio is 20-20-20. This fertilizer product has plenty of well rounded nutrients for the plant to keep it thriving. You may use this product along side, or later switch to, this brand’s blossom booster fertilizer once the plant shifts into setting buds and flowering.
This is an excellent choice for a granular fertilizer that will slow release into your soil. Osmocote is a popular fertilizer that comes with tens of thousands of reviews. The NPK ratio of this fertilizer is 14-14-14, making it a balanced all around fertilizer. The application of this product is quite easy. Simply scoop the appropriate amount and sprinkle it onto the soil. Mix the product into the top few inches of dirt and proceed to water your plants regularly! The temperature of the soil controls how the product is utilized by the plants once watered. This makes the product a fool proof way of fertilizing.
There are many good and bad options to consider when companion planting for pumpkins. In this article, we will discuss what will grow best alongside this classic fall crop and what plants will make the worst neighbors for your pumpkins. The benefits of choosing the right plants to surround your pumpkins with are numerous. So let’s get started and read on for everything you need to know.
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Good Companion Planting for Pumpkins
Pumpkin patches can take up a lot of ground space and have shallow roots. Plants that you choose to grow near them should accommodate for this. They need to occupy either the space above the patch or need to be harvested before your pumpkin plants begin growing vigorously. This vigorous growth also makes them very heavy feeders. Therefore, good companion plants should help add nutrients to the soil or at least not compete for them.
When considering good companion planting for pumpkins, the insects that plants attract or repel is big factor. It’s important to note that for pumpkins to grow the plants flowers must first be pollinated. This means that plants that attract pollinators to your pumpkin patch make great garden buddies. Pumpkins are also vulnerable to pests such as aphids, cucumber beetles, vine borers, squash bugs, slugs and snails. Luckily, there are plenty of plants that can help deter these pests from harming your pumpkins.
Legumes Make Excellent Companion Plants for Pumpkins
As we have mentioned, pumpkins are heavy feeders and love soil rich with plenty of nitrogen. Legumes just so happen to fix nitrogen to the soil, which will help your pumpkin plants thrive. Specifically, pole beans and peas are best because they can grow up upward and occupy the space above your pumpkins that is not being utilized. For even further synergy, a tall sturdy plant such as corn or sunflowers can be used as the support for the pole beans or peas. These three plants can coexist perfectly with pumpkins occupying the ground and the corn and vine growing legumes occupying the space above.
Bush and Pole Beans
Pole beans are the perfect garden neighbor for pumpkins. They will grow upward and stay out of your pumpkin plant’s way. All the while, they will be adding plenty of nitrogen to the soil for your pumpkins to feed on. It is a perfect pairing. Bush beans can also be planted near your pumpkins early in the spring while they are small. The bush beans will be ready to be harvested early in the summer before your pumpkin patch has really started growing outward. Simply pull them out when harvesting them, and the resulting space and nitrogen rich soil is left behind for your pumpkins to expand. Just don’t plant them too close or you risk harming the roots of your pumpkin plants when pulling the bush beans out. Alternatively, you can cut the bush beans at the base to minimize this risk.
Like pole beans, peas will grow up some sort of support and stay out of your pumpkins way. With the ground space free, your pumpkins will be left to thrive on the nitrogen rich soil. They are equally as great of an option when companion planting for pumpkins as pole beans are. So add some peas to your pumpkin patch and maximize your garden.
Tall Crops Optimize Space
Tall crops that do not block out too much sunlight can be planted right alongside pumpkins. Since pumpkins prefer to sprawl out over the ground, they get along great with plants that occupy vertical space. Most tall plants can also act as a trellis for climbing plants such as pole beans and peas. This creates a harmonious group of three that will make the most out of the space in your garden.
Planting corn and pumpkin together is a good idea. They occupy different areas of your garden and will not compete with each other. Pumpkins grow horizontally while corn grows vertically. With corn’s sturdy stalk, climbing legumes can use it as a trellis. This provides nitrogen for your pumpkins and the corn both to grow. This is the most iconic example of companion planting.
Sunflowers are very similar to corn when it comes to companion planting for pumpkins. They will grow above your pumpkins and can be used as support for climbing crops. Sunflowers have one excellent perk though. Pollinators love sunflowers and will be attracted to the area which will benefit your pumpkins. A pumpkin plant needs these helpful insects to pollinate its flowers in order to grow its pumpkins. This makes sunflowers an amazing flower and tall crop to pair with pumpkins.
Flowers Attract Pollinators For Pumpkins
Since pumpkin plants need their flowers to be pollinated in order to produce pumpkins, flowers that attract a lot of pollinators make great neighbors. Putting beautiful flowers in and around your pumpkin patch is sure to make it a popular location for beneficial insects. Some flowers even provide pest repellant qualities or act as trap crops to draw pests away from your pumpkin plants.
As this flowers name suggests, beebalms are a favorite among bees and other pollinators. These fragrant flowers come in many vibrant colors and are easy to grow. Pollinators will flock to get the nectar from these plants and while they are in town, they will visit your pumpkin plants as well.
Similar to beebalms, tansy is beloved by pollinators. This wildflower will ensure your pumpkins get pollinated. That’s not all, this flower even repels pests like cucumber beetles and squash bugs. Just be careful because this flower can become a weed if not kept under control.
Marigolds are a classic companion flower that attracts beneficial insects and repels harmful ones. Of course bees and other pollinating insects will come to its flowers, but so will predatory insects. Ladybugs and hoverflies love marigolds and will help control aphids. Additionally, marigolds strong scent repels pests like squash bugs, snails and slugs that may threaten your pumpkins.
Next up is a trap crop that is a favorite among pollinators. Nasturtiums attract good and bad insects alike. However, this can be used to draw helpful insects to the area and keep harmful insects distracted. Aphids will flock to this plant instead of your pumpkins. Hoverflies will then show up to feast on the aphid population. Having some of these gorgeous flowers near your pumpkin patch is a great idea.
Petunias also attract pests that would otherwise harm your pumpkins. This makes it another choice for a trap crop flower to plant near your pumpkins. Petunias bring in plenty of pollinators to help your pumpkins, all the while giving harmful pests a place away from your pumpkins to hangout. That is until the predatory insects show up and make a meal out of them.
Shallow Root Crops Are Nice Neighbors
When companion planting for pumpkins, you have to consider their shallow but very vast root systems. Crops with larger and deep root systems can disrupt a pumpkin plants root system and steal nutrients if planted too closely. However, smaller root crops can coexist near pumpkin plants without bothering their roots. They also grow extremely quickly and can be planted near pumpkins and harvested before the vines start to overwhelm the area. Just don’t plant these crops too closely or you risk damaging the pumpkins roots when harvesting.
As a classic root crop, carrots can be planted in an area near pumpkins. When planted in the early spring, they will reach maturity in just 70-80 days. You can harvest them and make room for vines from your pumpkins that will be reaching out for space. In the meantime, your carrots will control weeds in the area until your pumpkins can take over the space.
Radishes are another great plant to consider planting near your pumpkins patch. They grow even faster than carrots and will be out of the way long before your pumpkins expand their growing area. Not to mention, they also repel several pests such as squash bugs and cucumber beetles. So, continuously planting some on the edges of your pumpkin’s growing area is a great way to help deter these pests.
Turnips have some benefits as a root crop companion. They grow quickly and won’t disrupt your pumpkin’s roots system. Aphids love turnips, so this crop can be used as a trap crop to keep your pumpkins safer. Just don’t plant too many too close and risk an aphid infestation right next to your pumpkins.
Leafy Greens Can Be Planted Near Pumpkins
Leafy greens are fast growers and do not grow very large. This means that they can coexist well with pumpkin plants. Plant them in the cool early spring near your pumpkin patch and they will be ready for harvest before your pumpkin vines expand. This can help control weeds in the area and make good use of the space until it is needed by the pumpkins. Leafy greens to consider include: Lettuce, Spinach, Swiss Chard and Arugula
Herbs Are Always Great Companion Plants
Herbs bring so many benefits to your garden and should always be given thought when companion planting for pumpkins. Many will bring pest control benefits that can help keep your pumpkins safe. Beneficial insects such as pollinators and predatory insects are often attracted to them as well. With so many great options to choose from, there is sure to be something to pair with your pumpkins.
Lavender is a wonderful flowering herb that pollinators love. Having some growing near your pumpkin patch will attract plenty of them. Its calming scent even keeps many annoying bugs like flies and mosquitos away.
Another flowering herb you should try is borage. Pollinators love its nice blue flowers and so do beneficial insects that will prey on pests. It is a great plant to attract the right insects to your pumpkin patch.
This herb not only flowers but has many culinary uses as well. Bees will be sure to come to a garden with planted rosemary nearby. Its delicious scent also repels pests such as slugs and beetles.
Dill is another flowering herb that is frequently used in the kitchen and brings plenty of pest control advantages. Its yellow flowers are a hit among pollinators and its tall height means that your pumpkins vines won’t overwhelm it. This herb is known to deter aphids and squash bugs because it attracts insects that prey on these pests.
This delicious herb has a wonderful scent. A scent that also attracts many predatory insects that eat aphids. This will can help control the aphid population to keep your pumpkins safe. Once it flowers, pollinators will also love this herb.
Basil is another tasty herb that goes great in the kitchen and in the garden. Just like thyme, it attracts pollinators and other beneficial insects. Additionally, it can help deter beetles from gathering in the area. Pumpkins will appreciate all of these benefits.
Sage is known to deter some of a pumpkin’s more annoying threats such as snails, slugs and beetles. This means that they will make a great pair in your garden. When this herb flowers, it will even bring plenty of pollinators to the area.
Up next is the herb oregano. It deters cucumber beetles, which are major threat to pumpkin patches. In addition to that, this plant attracts lacewings which are one of the best predatory insects at controlling aphids populations. Oregano is a great choice to have as a neighbor for your pumpkins.
Beneficial insects love parsley. From pollinators to predatory insects, all will flock to the area where you plant this herb. Putting some near your pumpkins is sure to help your crop.
Cilantro has a very unique smell and it happens to be one that aphids do not like. It can grow quite tall, so do not fret if your pumpkin vines begin to grow around it. Just make sure that this plant isn’t going to shade your pumpkins too much, as its foliage can be very dense and leafy.
Bad Companion Planting for Pumpkins
The biggest mistake that you can make when companion planting for pumpkins is by choosing plants that attract similar pests as pumpkins. This can lead to an infestation because this area of your garden will be too good of a feast for these pests to miss out on. The second error that you can make is choosing heavy feeders that will suck nutrients from the soil that pumpkins need to thrive. An additional concern that you should consider is making sure not to have plants that will compete for space since pumpkin plants have vines that grow over a large area. Finally, plants with extensive and large root systems can disturb the shallow roots of pumpkins if planted to close.
Squashes are very similar to pumpkins. They need a lot of space and nutrients to grow. Therefore, they will compete with pumpkins for resources if planted too closely. Even if they are not planted very close, having them in a similar area also risks an infestation. This is because the same exact pests that are attracted to pumpkins will be attracted to squashes. Plant these crops separately and try masking their scents with other better companions.
Similar to squash, melons do not get along well with pumpkins either. For the same exact reasons as stated above. They are heavy feeders that need space for their vines to grow, and they attract the same pests to the area. Keep your melons, squashes and pumpkins all in their own area if possible.
Pumpkins are vulnerable to cucumber beetles and, unsurprisingly, cucumber plants attract this pest. If you plant your cucumbers too close to your pumpkins, you risk these beetles attacking your pumpkins as well. Not to mention, cucumbers grow in a vining pattern that competes with pumpkins for space.
Members of the brassica family like broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, Brussel’s sprouts and kale are heavy feeders that require a lot of nutrients. Therefore, when planted too close to pumpkins they can steal nutrients from the soil. This can hinder the growth of your pumpkins, so it is best to plant them separately and find better companions.
Large Root Crops
It is best to consider options other than large root crops like potatoes and onions when companion planting for pumpkins. This is because they have large extensive roots that can disrupt your pumpkin’s shallow roots and hinder their growth. Not to mention, they tend to be heavy feeders that will deplete the soil of nutrients your pumpkins need.
Transform your indoor living space into a natural and beautiful area filled with lush plants. There are numerous indoor plants that you can grow in your home, however, vining plants add something special to a room. The best indoor vining plants are those that grow quickly, are low maintenance, and need minimal care. These plants are a beautiful addition to any room!
Best Indoor Vining Plants
The pothos plant (Epipremnum aureum), also known as devil’s ivy, is widely popular and easily one of the greatest indoor vining plants to have in your home. This iconic plant is a very easy to grow houseplant that comes in many varieties and colors for you to choose from. Some popular choices are golden, marble queen, jade and neon varieties. This is a low maintenance and beautiful type of plant to add to your home.
Light: Bright, indirect light, it can tolerate low levels for a while but coloring will fade.
Water: Once every week or two when the soil is dry. Too much water can cause root rot to occur.
Soil: Well draining soil
Fertilizer: Once a month during spring and summer.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans
English Ivy (Hedera helix) is a common type of vining plant that you may see growing indoors. When grown outdoors, this plant will grow as ground cover or a vining climbing plant. Due to this growth pattern, this plant is invasive in the United States. Regardless of its outdoor infamy, this is a common indoor houseplant that is a vigorous grower. Propagate this plant easily with stem cuttings to duplicate your plants!
Light: Moderate to bright levels of light when grown indoors
Water: Once every week
Soil: Well draining, does not like wet roots for long and can cause root rot
Fertilizer: Once every two weeks during spring and summer.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, horses, and humans
String of Pearls
String of Pearls (Senecio rowleyanus) is a succulent that is commonly grown indoors for its unique look. Other similar types of plants are the other “string of” succulents, including string of bananas, string of hearts, string of dolphins and more! The string of pearls plant grows with trailing vines that produce many round balls along the vine that resemble pearls. Due to the fact that this plant is a succulent, it does not require too much effort to grow. So, as long as you can get the water schedule down, this plant is a breeze! This plant can also be propagated and duplicated with cuttings to grow your collection.
Light: Bright, indirect and direct light
Water: Once every two to three weeks. Due to the fact that this is a succulent, watering too often can cause root rot.
Soil: Well draining soil, such as cactus mix.
Fertilizer: Once every two weeks during spring and summer at half strength.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans
Hoya Carnosa, also known as the wax plant, grows vines with dark green leaves that appear waxy. This is a low maintenance plant that does not demand too much care, making it an excellent choice for indoor vining plants to fill your space. You can train the vines to grow around support or trail down the side of a hanging pot for a unique look. The wax plant will thrive with plenty of humidity or misting of the leaves.
Light: Bright, indirect light
Water: Once every week when the soil dries out. This plant does not like overly wet soil or too dry of soil, so a watering schedule is important.
Soil: Well draining soil
Fertilizer: Once a month
Monstera Peru is a low maintenance vining houseplant that is native to South America. This slow growing plant is easy to grow, so long as its basic needs are met. The Monstera Peru will thrive best within temperatures of 60°F to 85°F with plenty of humidity. Due to this, having the plant in a room with added humidity, such as a kitchen or bathroom can benefit the plant. Additionally, you can place it near a humidifier or pebble tray. The plant can also be propagated from stem cuttings to make additional plants!
Light: Bright, indirect light
Water: Once or twice a week during spring and summer when the soil is dry to the touch.
Soil: Well draining and aerated soil
Fertilizer: Once a month during spring and summer. Avoid fertilizing in the winter.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans
The heartleaf philodendron, also known as the sweetheart plant, is native to Central and South America. This popular houseplant produces adorable heart shaped leaves that makes it a pleasing addition for any space. The heartleaf philodendron grows slowly but lives for a long time. It has been known to survive for over 20 years when properly taken care of. This long living plant can produce very long vining stems of over 10 feet, so this is an excellent plant to train to grow up surfaces. Additionally, you will also be able to propagate plenty more of these plants from stem cuttings quite easily!
Light: Partial sun
Water: Once every week or two when the soil dries to the touch. Be careful not to overwater.
Soil: Well draining soil, optimally with peat moss and perlite.
Fertilizer: Once a month in spring and summer
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans.
The inch plant plant (Tradescantia zebrina) is one of the more popular and easy going indoor vining plants. This plant produces nice looking heart shaped leaves that range from green, purple, and silver. This appealing houseplant is native to subtropical areas within North and South America and is often grown in hanging pots. This plant can tolerate a wide range of growing conditions, making it an excellent choice for many households. With plenty of light and water this plant will thrive indoors. This plant is easily propagated from stem cuttings to give you plenty of plants for the future.
Light: Bright, indirect light
Water: Water regularly once the soil has partially dried out. This plant likes humidity and will do well in a room with higher humidity or with misting.
Soil: Well draining soil. Will do well in basic potting soil meant for houseplants.
Fertilizer: Once every two weeks in the spring and summer months.
Toxicity: Mildly toxic to dogs, cats, and humans.
The rex begonia is a variety of plant that originates from semitropical and tropical areas and boasts beautiful showy colored leaves. The most common colors that this plant comes in is red, green, silver, and purple. This plant will thrive in temperatures between 60°F to 80°F, as well as with plenty of humidity. When exposed to temperature below 60 degrees, this plant’s growth will begin to slow down.
Light: Bright indirect light. Can do well under lights and can tolerate partial shade.
Water: Once a week when the top inch of soil has dried.
Soil: Well draining soil
Fertilizer: Quarter strength water soluble fertilizer applied once every 2 weeks during periods of growth during spring and summer months.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans. The most toxic part of the plant is located under the soil.
String of Turtles
The string of turtles plant (Peperomia prostrata) is a semi succulent that is native to the rainforests of Brazil. Though this plant is from the rainforest, it grows very well as an indoor houseplant. This plant gets its name from the look of the leaves, which resemble turtle shells along a trailing stem. The string of turtles grows slowly, however, they make for great indoor vining plants for containers or hanging pots.
Light: Bright, indirect light. Optimally, be sure that light reaches all parts of the plant and vines.
Water: Once every two weeks when the top 2 inches of soil are dry to the touch.
Soil: Well draining peat based potting mix with plenty of organic matter.
Fertilizer: Once every two weeks during spring and summer.
The grape ivy plant is native to Central and South America. This plant produces vines that look similar to grapevines, which is the reason for the plant’s name! The plant is low maintenance and does not require too much care. Due to the slow growth, you will not need to worry about repotting the plant very often. The grape ivy does well within normal humidity ranges, so any room will do well for this plant as long as the temperature is consistent and between 60°F and 80°F. You can propagate this vining plant with leaf cuttings to create new plants.
Light: Partial shade, does well under lights or in a window
Water: Once a week or more often when the top inch of soil dries out during the growing season.
Soil: Well draining and aerated soil. Optimally with peat moss and perlite.
Fertilizer: Not necessary. You may fertilize once per season at half strength.
Swiss Cheese Plant
The Swiss Cheese Plant (Monstera adansonii) is one of the most unique looking indoor vining plants that you can find. This plant is a notoriously fast grower and grows in a vining pattern. The swiss cheese plant is native to Central and South America, therefore, the plant thrives in sunlight and high humidity. Keeping this plant in a location that has high humidity is best, such as a bathroom or kitchen that gets light. The plant will do best in temperatures of above 40°F. Additionally, you can propagate this plant easily with stem cuttings.
Light: Bright, indirect light. Avoid direct sunlight to limit burning of leaves.
Water: Once a week or when the top inch of soil feels try to the touch.
Soil: Well draining, peat moss based soil
Fertilizer: Monthly at half strength during spring and summer months
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans
The arrowhead plant is an one of the top indoor vining plants to grow because it is a fast growing plant with beautifully colored leaves. Due to the fast growth of this plant, you will want to repot it once every year or two encourage the growth of its vines. Otherwise, you can divide the plant into multiple sections to keep the plants a smaller size. Additionally, you can propagate this plant easily with stem cuttings to duplicate your plants.
Light: Bright direct light
Water: Once every two weeks when the soil dries out. This plant loves humidity, so it does best in a humid room.
Soil: Well draining
Fertilizer: Once a month from spring to fall. Avoid fertilizing during winter.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans
If you are looking for one of the most unique indoor vining plants around, don’t pass over the Burro’s tail, also known as the donkey’s tail. This plant is native to Mexico and Honduras and grows with trailing vines that grow succulent leaves that form around the stem. This growth pattern gives the look of a bushy tail. The Burro’s tail grows best in a hanging pot that will let its vines grow downward. You will be able to propagate this plant from stem cuttings to produce even more of these showy plants.
Light: Bright light
Water: Once every two weeks when the soil dries out. Like most succulents, this plant does not do well when over watered.
Soil: Well draining and sandy soil. Typical potting soil or cactus soil mix will work well for this plant.
Fertilizer: Not necessary. Plant may benefit from fertilizer once a year in spring.
The creeping fig plant (Ficus pumila) is a common vining indoor houseplant that is native to Asia. This is a vining plant that grows vigorously, so pruning it is a great idea to keep it well groomed. These plants are amazing climbers, so be careful, they may start growing up any vertical surface that they are near! This plant loves humidity and will thrive in rooms that have higher humidity, such as kitchens or bathrooms. You may also choose to keep it near a humidifier or a pebble tray as well. These plants will live for several years, however, they will eventually die when grown indoors. You should periodically propagate your plant through leaf cuttings in order to ensure another plant is alive to keep the cycle continuing.
Light: Bright indirect light, at least 6 to 8 hours a day. Can tolerate low light conditions for some time, however, the plant will not thrive as well.
Water: Once a week when soil has dried out.
Soil: Well draining soil. This plant is not picky about soil type, so any well draining potting mix will work well.
Fertilizer: Not necessary. You may choose to fertilize once a month during spring, summer, and fall.
Toxicity: Toxic to dogs, cats, and humans.
The Purple Heart plant (Tradescantia pallida) is a purple colored plant that is native to Mexico. The purple heart plant can be grown as ground cover or as an indoor houseplant to enjoy its beautiful cascading leaves. These plants are easy to grow and quite forgiving due to the fact that they are moderately drought tolerant and can tolerate plenty of water as well. You will be able to propagate this plant easily by using cuttings to grow more.
Light: Full sunlight to enjoy the vibrancy of the leaves. Can handle partial shade but colors will not be as impressive.
Water: Once every week or two when the top soil feels dry. Reduce water during the winter.
Soil: Porous but well draining soil
Fertilizer: Not necessary but fertilizing monthly during growth can be beneficial.
Toxicity: Toxic to cats, dogs, horses, and humans.
When it comes to flower gardening, the options for what to grow in are limitless. However, what are the best flowers to plant for beginners? There are many types of flowers that are ideal for those new to gardening. These flowers typically flourish with minimal maintenance, while filling your garden with beautiful blooms. In this article, we will go over the top selections for easy to grow flowers.
In This Article
What are the Best Flowers to Plant for Beginners?
The best flowers to plant for beginners can be broken up into annuals or perennials. These are the best annual flowers for beginners: marigolds, zinnias, petunias, calendula, sunflowers, and morning glories. The best perennial flowers for beginners are carnations, black eyed Susan’s, daylilies, and peonies. These options are some of the best choices of low maintenance flowers that are exceptionally tolerant and produce abundant blooms.
Annuals are plants that complete their lifecycle within a single year. This means that it grows from seed, matures into a developed plant, produces flowers or fruit, and grows new seeds in one growing season. At the end of the season, the plant will die until new seeds are grow a new plant.
Marigolds are among the best flowers to plant for beginners due to the fact that they are extremely easy to grow. These flowers thrive with minimal care, so long as they are given 6 to 8 hours of sunlight a day and regular water. Remarkably, marigolds are able to deal with many different types of soil and can handle heat and drought pretty well. These beautiful blooms will thrive in the ground or even in containers. Not to mention, pollinators will frequent your blossoms to enjoy the bountiful nectar and pollen this flower produces.
These flowers will grow quickly and continue to bloom throughout the entire growing season until frost. You can encourage more blooms to occur by deadheading the dried flowers on your plant. Marigolds make for excellent companion planting flowers because they deter many different types of pests, including spiders, nematodes, aphids, whiteflies, and more. All while attracting beneficial insects, such as ladybugs, bees, butterflies, hoverflies, and many others. Marigolds produce tons of seeds from each flower, allowing for you to easily harvest a lot throughout the season for future plants.
Zinnias are beautiful flowers that have a large array of styles and looks. If you are looking for a flower that combines being easy to grow with breathtaking beauty, this is the flower for you. Zinnias are quick to germinate and grow quickly into thriving plants. These flowers require minimal care, so long as they get water and sunlight. They love full sunlight of 6 to 8 hours a day and will respond by providing you with flowers all season long. You can expect your zinnias to continue to give you flowers until the first frost.
Zinnias will make an excellent home in both garden beds and in containers. This plant has many different varieties that range from short and compact to several feet tall. This will give you plenty of control and flexibility over what you grow in your garden. Additionally, you will be able to collect a lot of seeds from these flowers once they dry out for future seasons! On top of all of that, pollinators, such as butterflies, bees, and hummingbirds love these flowers.
Petunias are a shining star and one of the absolute best flowers to plant for beginners. These flowers come in many different varieties, ranging from wide spreading to compact bushy varieties that are great for container planting, all the way to cascading or wave varieties. The cascading and wave petunias are very popular hanging basket flowers, as they produce tons of consistent flowers to enjoy all season long until frost.
Petunias can thrive with basic care and grow quite fast once they are planted. They are adaptable to many different soil conditions and do not require an excessive amount of water. The more sunlight that your petunias get, the more flowers that they will produce for your garden. These flowers provide an amazing display of color and will impress anyone who sees them.
Calendulas, also known as English Marigolds or Pot Marigolds, are another beauty of a flower that is perfect for beginners. Though they are known by names that make them seem like traditional marigolds, they do not belong to the same species. The flowers that are produced are colorful and vibrant, offering a gorgeous pop of color in your garden bed that will make you look like a pro.
This is a hardy flower that is known to handle a variety of growing conditions. The calendula is a great plant for beginners because it germinates quickly and grows very easily. This flower doesn’t require too much care beyond water and sunlight. The pest repellent abilities of this flowering plant keeps it safe from harassment and damage from insects or animals. You can expect this plant to continue to produce beautiful flowers all season until frost, especially if you deadhead the dried flowers to allow for new growth.
Sunflowers are well known for their stand out beauty and how well they attract pollinators to the garden, especially bees. This flower is a great choice for the best flowers to plant for beginners because these are very easy to grow. Sunflowers come in many different varieties of heights, sizes, colors, and looks. The heights vary from the towering 12 foot varieties to the dainty 2 foot tall sizes. You will have a lot to choose from with this flower.
Sunflowers are very beginner friendly because they are easy to grow and not very picky about their conditions. Poor soil conditions are unlikely to stop this flower from growing and thriving. This favorite flower for many pollinators is a very forgiving plant that will be able to handle some neglect, especially if planted into the ground. Not only do insects love this plant but wildlife, such as birds, also will appreciate the seeds that these flowers produce. On top of all of that, sunflowers are frequently used as a companion plant for other types of plants by attracting insects to them and keeping them away from other crops. Overall, this is an excellent choice for a beginner gardener!
Morning glories are beautifully colored vining flowers that will be sure to give your yard a pop of color each morning. Since these are vining flowers, they will climb up any vertical surfaces that they can grab onto, optimally a trellis or fence. They come in multiple color varieties and are very unique because the flowers open up during the cool morning and close up later in the day as temperatures rise.
Morning glory flowers are excellent for a beginner who wants to grow their own plants from seeds, as they germinate and grow quite quickly. Though they like well draining soil and plenty of sunlight, they are forgiving to many different types of conditions and soil types. Morning glories are moderately tolerant to drought and will not have to be fertilized frequently. You also will not have to worry about deadheading the old flowers to keep the plant blooming. The pollinators will love the frequent and beautiful flowers that grow!
Perennials are plants that will live for multiple years. These plants will grow and produce blooms again every year, for several years. Perennials do not die off at the end of a growing season, instead they go dormant until the weather is favorable again.
Carnations are one of the best flowers to plant for beginners if you are looking for perennials. What makes these flowers special is that they come in over 300 different varieties and colors. This gives you a multitude of options to choose from to make your garden suited to your own creative needs. These blooms make for beautiful cut flowers that you can fill vases with after they grow.
Carnations optimally grow in nutrient rich and well draining soil. Though, they are adaptable to many different conditions, while being able to thrive in warm temperatures as well as cooler climates. Carnations can bounce back from mild neglect well because they are moderately drought tolerant plants. Not only are these flowers easy on the eyes, they also have a beautiful scent to them that appeals to many people. Carnations are excellent for both garden beds and container gardening, so you will have plenty of options. If you want more plants, you can even propagate it from cuttings, giving you an endless supply!
Black Eyed Susan
Black eyed Susan’s are commonly recommended as one of the best flowers to plant for beginners because of their low maintenance and their adaptability. These flowers are native to North America, so they are an excellent choice if that is where you are located. They are hardy perennials that will continue to come back every year to fill your garden with blooms.
Black eyed Susan’s prefer well draining soil but will grow in many different types of soils. These flowers are extremely forgiving and drought tolerant. This makes them an excellent plant choice for beginners who are just getting started or those that are busy. Black eyed Susan’s will not require much maintenance in the form of deadheading, pruning, or fertilizing. You can expect these easy going flowers to bloom all summer long, providing pollinators with nonstop nectar.
If you’re looking for a simple type of flower to grow, daylilies are a great choice and one of the best flowers to plant for beginners. You will have a large selection of varieties to choose from with this plant. This is because they come in a large variety of colors and types. If you want a reliable flower that grows rapidly and vigorously, give this perennial a try.
Daylilies are adaptable and can handle many types of soils and varying amount of sunlight. On top of that, these flowers are excellent at withstanding drought due to their ability to store nutrients in their large root systems underground. So, these plants will forgive you if you forget to water them every once in a while. While each flower will only bloom for a day, the plant will produce flowers continuously for 4 to 5 weeks of time. Some varieties, such as the reblooming daylilies, have an extended blooming season for even more color. The pollinators in your area will thank you for growing these gorgeous flowers.
Peonies, often referred to as the thornless rose, are delicate and beautiful looking flowers that will make your garden stand out. If you’re looking for a showy flower that will impress everyone, this is an excellent option. These flowers come in many colors, however, the main colors that you will find are red, pink, yellow, orange and white.
Peonies are often deemed to be beginner friendly flowers because they do not require much maintenance. Once a peony plant is grown, it can live for decades of time, in fact they have been known to live over 100 years. This plant is very hardy and can withstand many climates and temperature ranges. Peonies do not need to be watered too often once they are established, which makes them even better for a new gardener. Additionally, these beautiful flowers do not require much in terms of fertilization either. The peony plant is an excellent choice for your beginner garden.
Brussels Sprouts are a member of the Brassica family, making them a relative of cauliflower, broccoli, and cabbage. They are often referred to as mini cabbages, since the plant looks like many small cabbages growing on a stalk. Like other members of this family, Brussels sprouts are a cool season crop that thrives in cooler temperatures. This beloved vegetable is a biennial plant, which means that it will come back for a second season to finish its full circle of development. However, it is typically grown as an annual instead. In this article, we will discuss both seasons of the Brussels sprouts growing stages, so you know what to expect as your plant goes through its lifecycle. These strange looking plants are quite rewarding to grow, so test your green thumb with Brussels sprouts this season!
In This Article
What are the Brussels Sprouts Growing Stages?
The Brussels Sprouts growing stages are germination, seedling stage, vegetative growth, sprout development and harvest. The second season of the Brussels Sprouts lifecycle will consist of bolting and seed production. Each stage of growth marks a unique time during development and is essential to the plant’s overall success. Understanding the different stages of development will provide you will helpful insights into your plant, allowing for optimal growth and harvests!
The Germination Stage
After you select your variety of seeds, you will be able to start growing them. Germination will occur once the planted seed absorbs moisture, which will soften the harder outer shell. This will allow for water and nutrients to be taken in and a small stem with two leaves, called cotyledons, to emerge. This small stem and leaves will grow upward toward the light until they each the soil’s surface.
You should start Brussels sprouts seeds indoors 4 to 6 weeks before the last frost date occurs in your area. This will give your plant extra time to develop for a longer growing season. Germination will typically occur within one week but may take two. The optimal temperature for germination of this plant will be between 45°F to 85°F.
The Brussels sprouts seedling stage begins as the small leaves and stem break through the soil while reaching toward the light above. The seedling will continue to grow, as true leaves begin to be produced. True leaves are the leaves that grow after the first set of baby leaves. They are larger and will have a more typical Brussels sprout leaf appearance. The roots underneath the surface will continue to grow and expand, anchoring the plant into the soil.
During the seedling stage, it is important that plants get adequate water and sunlight. You should keep the seedling’s soil moist and ensure the plant receives at least 6 to 8 hours of sunlight per day, optimally more. Once the risk of frost has passed, you can move the plants outdoors. Don’t forget the hardening off process in order to slowly acclimate the plants to the outdoor environment. The seedling stage is the most vulnerable stage of the plant, so be sure to protect it from any damage.
Tip: Be sure to space your Brussels sprouts properly according to your seed packet. This plant can grow quite large and bushy and will require adequate space for growth.
Vegetative Growth Stage
The vegetative growth period of the Brussels sprouts growing stages is a time of significant development for the plant. During this phase, the plant will focus all of its energy on developing new leaves and lengthening its main stem, while increasing its overall size. You will see the plant begin to grow a lot of large leaves as the plant grows taller. The average height of this plant will be 2 to 3 feet tall. The large leaves help the plant capture energy from the sun during photosynthesis, as well as provide shade for the upcoming sprout growth. The roots will continue to develop under the soil to adequately anchor the plant into the ground and provide proper nutrient and water uptake.
Fertilizing with a nitrogen rich fertilizer is important during this stage since the plant is using a lot of energy to produce foliage. You should do this once every 3 to 4 weeks. It is important that a Brussels sprout plant receives adequate water during this stage as well, especially during hot temperatures. The plant should get 1 to 2 inches of water per week. Utilizing mulch around the base of the plant will help the soil retain moisture.
Tip: Brussel sprout plants often require additional support due to their height and growth pattern. Staking them is recommended.
Sprout Development Stage
The sprout development stage is an exciting part of the Brussels sprouts growing stages, as this is when you finally get to see the edible portion grow. The plant shifts into putting the majority of its energy into the growth of the Brussels sprouts at this point. You will begin to see small buds start to form along the main stem, right next to where the base of the leaves connect. These small buds are called axillary buds due to their growth occurring in the leaf axils of the plant. They will slowly grow larger and larger, with tightly packed leaves. Each small bud will form into its own individual sprout that can be consumed.
It’s important to not apply too much nitrogen to the soil during this stage because it can impact the growth of the sprouts. Too much nitrogen can cause the sprouts to be of poor quality, loosen, or split.
Tip: If the sprouts on your plant are not growing well, this may be due to too much heat or inadequate water or nutrients within the soil.
The harvest stage is the most rewarding period of the Brussels sprouts growing stages, where you can finally pick some of your hard earned vegetables and taste them! This stage marks the completion of the sprout’s growth on the stem. Since the sprouts will mature at different rates, the harvest stage will typically last for multiple weeks. The sprouts on the bottom of the stem are typically the first ones to begin to develop. Therefore, they are usually the first ones that are ready to harvest. Brussels sprouts will be ready for harvest when they are:
1-2″ in diameter
Bright green in color
Once the Brussels sprouts are ready for harvest, gently grab onto one and twist it off of the main stem. Alternatively, you can cut it off of the main stem with a knife or garden shears. If left on the plant for too long, the small heads will begin to turn yellow, become tougher and not taste as good.
Tip: The taste of the sprouts are enhanced when they experience cooler temperatures, so light frosts can make them taste sweeter.
Since Brussels sprouts are a biennial vegetable, they will come back for a second year. The plant does not produce edible Brussels sprouts in the second season like it did in the first year. The second year will consist of bolting and seed production. If you want to collect seeds from your Brussels sprouts, allow the plant to continue to the next season. People often opt to dig them up after the first year and are therefore, usually grown as if they are annuals.
Bolting is where the plant begins to focus on reproduction rather than sprout growth. When a Brussels sprouts plant is ready to bolt, a flowering stalk will shoot up from the center of the plant. This will have many buds that will open into flowers. The flowers will need to be fertilized by pollinators or from the wind. Once this occurs, the seeds will develop and mature within the pods.
The final part of the Brussels Sprouts growing stages is seed production. Once the flowers have been fertilized and the seeds have matured, the seed pods will dry out. At this point, you may collect the pods to harvest the seeds for future use.
Are you interested in starting a low maintenance herb garden with plants that will get along well? This article goes over the best herbs that are easy to grow and compatible alongside herbs with similar growing patterns. The uses and benefits of herbs are extensive, from culinary to medicinal. Give these herb companions a try this season!
In This Article
Best Plants for a Low Maintenance Herb Garden
Many herbs share similar growing conditions, making them excellent plants to grow in a low maintenance herb garden. Some of the best herbs that can tolerant drought and enjoy soil that is on the drier side are rosemary, thyme, oregano, marjoram, and sage. While some others enjoy a more moist soil, such as cilantro, tarragon, dill, chives and parsley. Planting these types of herbs together can make for a wonderful and easy to care for garden.
Drought Tolerant Low Maintenance Herb Garden
Rosemary boasts a delightful aroma and strong taste that grows with little attention payed to it. It is a low maintenance plant that is moderately drought tolerant. However, plants that are in containers typically need to be watered more often than those planted in the ground. Rosemary will be able to handle both hot temperatures, as well as chilly ones with ease. It will be able to survive in temperatures as low as 15°F, although it grows best between 60-85°F. This makes growing rosemary excellent for a low maintenance garden!
This herb loves sunlight and requires full sun, optimally with at least 6 to 8 hours per day. Rosemary thrives in well draining soil that won’t leave its roots wet. So, be sure to not overwater this plant. On top of all that, rosemary can be started from seeds or even cuttings! Though, it’s important to note that rosemary seeds may be slow to germinate.
Tip: Begin your rosemary plants indoors 8-10 weeks before planning to move them outside to get a jump start on the growing season.
Thyme is a resilient herb that you may know for being used in a great many recipes. This herb is very hardy and grows well in a variety of conditions. This plant is a short herb that grows as a perennial, so you can expect thyme to come back the next season. Thyme flourishes in full sun, with at least 6 to 8 hours of sunlight everyday. As long as this herb gets sun, well draining soil, and some water you can expect it to be happy. Thyme is pretty drought tolerant and naturally deters many pests, making your herb garden an even easier experience.
Sage is a low maintenance herb that can handle dry conditions, as it is a drought tolerant plant. Lucky for you, this plant is another perennial, so it will come back by itself for multiple years to provide you with tons of fresh herb. Sage prefers full sunlight, well draining and nutrient rich soil. This plant can be grown from seed or a cutting, however cuttings are most optimal because seeds can take a long time to produce a plant that will have harvestable foliage.
Oregano is a hardy perennial herb that thrives on full sunlight of at least 6 to 8 hours a day, as well as well draining soil. It can be grown from seed or cutting. This herb is very easy to grow and is known for its inclusion in numerous recipes, especially Mediterranean dishes or sauces. Oregano isn’t picky and can even handle growing in poor soil, so this is an excellent herb to put into your low maintenance herb garden.
Another lesser known, but delicious, herb is Marjoram. This herb is similar to oregano and often is used in the same recipes as a substitute. You can grow Marjoram from seeds or from cuttings. Marjoram is great for growing in the ground or even in containers. Similar to the others in this category, the plant loves full sunlight, well draining and nutrient rich soil. If you provide this herb with these things, it will be easy for you to grow.
Moist Soil Low Maintenance Herb Garden
Parsley has earned a reputation for being a hassle free herb that grows well alongside others. It’s a biennial herb that will grow leaves and stems the first year and will flower and release seeds in the second year. Many people disregard the flowering and seeding phase of the plant and choose to cut it down at the end of the year.
Parsley loves having plenty of sunlight and water, which will ensure its flourishing growth. The plant prefers full sunlight of 6 to 8 hours of sunlight per day. Parsley aligns with the other herbs in this section because it needs the same basic care. This plant grows best in well draining and nutrient rich soil. It’s important to note that parsley is known to germinate slowly. So, you should start the seeds indoors 6 to 8 weeks prior to the last frost date in your area to give them a head start.
Tip: Freeze extra clipped parsley instead of drying for extra flavor retention.
Tarragon is another easy to grow herb that you may not have heard of before. This plant is a perennial that can give you harvestable herbs for multiple years. It prefers a well lit location where it can get plenty of sun, tolerating either full sun or partial shade. The plant requires a well draining soil to thrive that has nutrients from organic matter mixed in. This is a pretty tolerant plant that can handle many different types of soil conditions, so this makes a great addition to your low maintenance herb garden! Tarragon has a delicate sweetness and a slight licorice flavor. Don’t worry, many people who hate licorice enjoy this herb. This herb pairs well with many chicken dishes and a wide range of sauces.
Dill is a unique looking herb that is well known for being used in recipes, such as fish based dishes, egg and potato salads, and soups. This herb is an easy to grow annual plant that will actually reseed itself by dropping seeds on the ground at the end of the season, causing it to come back in the future seasons. Dill, like many other herbs, grows best in full sunlight of at least 6 to 8 hours of light a day. Similarly, this herb also enjoys a well draining soil that contains plenty of nutrients. Most herbs, as well as dill, do not require much fertilization as long as the soil has organic matter and nutrients within it.
Tip: Dill is known to get blown over when there are high winds, so be sure to provide support for plant, plant it along side another tall plant or plant it near a structure that can block the wind.
Cilantro is an extremely well known herb that is harvested for its great tasting leaves or seeds. The seeds are known by the name of coriander. This herb, like the rest, enjoys full sunlight and a well draining soil, so it will get along with the others in this section. This is an annual herb that is known to be fast growing and can be planted after the risk of frost has passed directly into the garden. Cilantro is a widely used herb in recipes across the globe. You may find cilantro as an ingredient within recipes such as salsas, soups, Asian cuisine, Mexican cuisine, or even within seafood recipes.
Chives are an extremely popular perennial herb that tastes delicious in large number of recipes. They are part of the allium family, along with onions and garlic, but with a milder flavor and aroma. Like other allium members, this herb is excellent for companion planting due to the pest repellent ability that it has. This will be a welcome addition into your low maintenance herb garden, along with some of the other pest controlling herbs.
Chives are hardy plants that are tolerant to drought. They only grow about 12 inches tall, so they do not take up much space. They will grow in small clusters from bulbs beneath the soil. This beloved herb requires full sun of 6 to 8 hours a day, as well as well draining soil. However, chives are known to be able to deal with many types of soil. Optimally, you should add organic matter into the soil to make it more nutrient rich for better growth. This herb will grow great in the ground or even in a container!
Tip: This herb will produce beautiful purple flowers that can attract pollinators!
Low Maintenance Herbs to Plant Separately
Mint is an herb that is known for growing extremely quickly and vigorously. This can cause it to spread and compete with other plants for space and resources. It’s best to grow your mint away from other herbs or in its own container.
Catnip is another herb that is known to spread easily in a garden. For this reason, it can compete with other herbs for space and nutrients. It is best if planted further away from others or in its own container.
Pea plants are very easy to grow, making them a favorite among gardeners. However, they only grow during cool weather, which means that they will grow best during spring and fall months. The most common types of pea plants that you can grow are sweet peas, snap peas, and snow peas. Sweet peas are grown for their delicious seeds, as the pods are not edible. Both snap peas and snow peas are excellent choices for their edible pods and their tasty seeds. Get on your garden gloves and let’s dig into the pea plant growing stages!
In This Article
What are the Pea Plant Growing Stages?
The pea plant growing stages are germination, seedling, vegetative growth, flowering, pod development, and harvest. During each stage, the pea plant will go through different types of development that will be essential to the plant’s ultimate success. Understanding each stage will allow you to better know your plants and catch anything that may go wrong ahead of time.
Pea Seed Germination Stage
The journey of the pea plant starts with germination of the seed. When the seed of the pea plant is provided with moisture and warmth, the process will begin. The seed will start to absorb water from the surrounding soil, softening its outer shell. The seed will break open, revealing a small first root and, eventually, a stem with two seed leaves, called cotyledons. These will push up through the dirt in an effort to grow towards light.
Peas should be directly sown outdoors when the temperatures are right. These plants can withstand light frosts and will grow outdoors when temperatures are above 40°F. Sow the pea seeds 1 inch deep within moist soil. Follow your seed packet instructions for specific spacing and depth requirements. Do not plant your peas where you have previously grown them in previous seasons to make sure the soil has enough nutrients. Melons, cucumbers or squash are excellent candidates to plant where your peas were last season. They will appreciate the extra nitrogen fixed to the soil by your previous pea plant.
Tip: Soak your pea seeds in water overnight in order to soften them prior to planting. This will speed up the germination time.
Pea Seedling Stage
The seedling stage is marked by the baby stem and leaves breaking through the soil and revealing themselves. The plant will start producing true leaves that will begin the process of photosynthesis for the plant. These true leaves will look more like the plant’s typical leaves that you are used to seeing. The pea plant will be at its weakest point during the seedling stage, so it’s important to protect it from damage. If you are looking to grow peas for the fall, it is important that you gently care for them through the heat of the late summer to make sure that they make it to the fall. To do this, make sure to provide them with plenty of shade and water.
At this point your new pea plant will need full sunlight of 6 to 8 hours or more per day. These plants can tolerate partial shade conditions, however, they may not grow as well or produce as many pods. Using plants such as corn or sunflowers as natural support can help with this. The leaves of these tall sturdy plants will shade your pea plant just enough without reducing its growth and pod production.
Pea Plant Vegetative Growth Stage
Vegetative growth is an important part of the pea plant growing stages. This is when the pea plant will begin putting all of its effort into growing leaves, stems, and tendrils. The plant will continue to work on growing its root system to aid in nutrient uptake and growth. You will see your plant starting to make tendrils that are curly little vines. They will grab onto anything that they can as they search for support in order to grow upward. This is the point where having a trellis, some form of netting, or a tall sturdy plant like corn or sunflowers is important for your plants to grow big and tall. You may need to help your plant grab onto nearby support initially.
Pea Plant Flowering Stage
Flowering marks the point in the pea plant growing stages where maturity has been reached. The plant will now start producing many flowers that will soon be the location of a pod. The flowers are often white, purple, or even pink. Pea plants are self pollinating, meaning that they have both male and female parts within the flower. The plant does not rely on pollinators or nature to spread pollen from flower to flower. Though, you will often still see pollinating insects visiting your peas anyways!
Tip: Be careful growing different types of peas near each other because they can cross pollinate with nearby pea plants. This could lead to a hybrid type of pea growing on the plant.
After successful pollination occurs within the flowers, the pod development phase of the pea plant growing stages will begin. The flower will dry out and a pod will begin to grow in its place. The pea plant will begin to put all of its energy into developing pea pods at this point. The seeds within each pod will grow larger as they develop.
Light fertilizer may be applied to pea plants that are grown in containers during this point in the plant’s development. Target low levels of NPK, such as 5-10-10. However, pea plants do not often require any fertilizer if they are being grown in the ground, as long as the soil is nutrient rich. Peas are nitrogen fixing plants that will create their own nitrogen to use from the air and fix it into a usable form for the plant. So, they get most of what they need all by themselves!
Tip: Make sure to provide adequate water at this point in the your pea plant’s lifecycle and to not let the soil completely dry out. This may cause the plant to produce fewer pea pods.
Pea Harvest Stage
The harvesting stage is the grand finale of the pea plant growing stages! This is when you get to reap the rewards for your hard work and nurturing care. Each type of pea plant will have different signs of being ready for harvest. Harvest your peas when:
Snap peas are full length according to your seed variety. They have formed a tender pod with seeds that have begun to plump up inside. It’s best to not leave snap peas on the plant for too long, as they may become less tasty and tough.
Snow pea pods are often harvested when young and tender. The pods have formed and the seeds inside have not fully matured yet. The seeds should appear very small. Snow peas that are left on the plant to mature for too long will not have as much flavor and may be tougher to eat.
Sweet pea pods will look plump, green, and filled with seeds. The seeds should be small and tender, without being overly developed within the pod.
If you are not sure if your peas are ready for harvest, pick one and do a taste test. This will give you an idea of when the perfect time to harvest is. This is also the time where you need to decide if you want to eat the peas, store them, or collect the seeds for future planting!