Before we indulge in understanding how annuals and perennials are chosen, let’s comprehend what they are. Annuals are plants whose life-cycle lasts for a year. They thrive from seeds and bloom in one long growing season; spring to fall. Annuals offer beautiful colors and are popular among flower gardeners. On the other hand, perennials are plants that live for two years or more. They bloom yearly and continue to grow until they get to maturity. The maturity period varies but it could be three to five years.
Just like all other items we use, plants have a shopping criteria as well. There are factors that you must consider when shopping for the plants to use in your garden. This includes annuals and perennials. The shopping factors to consider include;
How to shop for annuals and perennials
Shop at a well-known garden store
Big garden stores offer quality plants and seedlings at affordable prices. Though not all small or starter gardening stores are bad, it is important to verify their quality of plants and seedlings before buying from them. You do not want to invest in a poor quality plant due to over or under watering while at the garden store. Most staff members are usually untrained and inexperienced in handling different types of plants and seedlings.
Check for pest invasion signs
You do not want to carry a problem from the stores to your well maintained garden. Though it sounds ridiculous, it is important to look for signs of pest invasion on the plants or the seedlings you want to buy. Check the leaves, underneath them and stems for pest eggs and insects feeding in the plants. Tiny discoloration spots on the leaves signify insect infestation that might affect other crops in your garden. Purchasing infested plants can start a never ending pest’s plague in your garden.
A label should offer information about the plant type, cultivar, degree of sun exposure or watering required and its hardiness. Labels are also used to signify quality. Thus, consider a plant that is not labelled or contains poor information as of low quality.
Go for plant colors that compliment your garden and home. Colors are either warm or cool; yellow and red are warm while blue, violet and white are cool. Mix the warm and cool colors to get an intensified and beautiful garden. Use neutrals between bright colored plants and go for plants that bloom during different seasons to ensure full season color in your garden.
Whether you are using transplants or seedlings to plant annuals and perennials, they must be planted properly to boost healthy growth. Prepare the planting beds and dig at least 6 inches to enhance good drainage and lay out your garden’s design before purchasing the plants. You get an idea of the types to buy. Remember to keep aroma in mind. With the right planting techniques, you can grow perennials or annuals on large or small scale. Moreover, planning ensures that you have more seasons of enjoyable flower gardening.
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