10 June 2012

42 zinnia plants for under $2.00 - potting up seedlings


Tall zinnias with large blooms attract hundreds of butterflies to our garden every year and planting them from seed guarantees that a lot of nectar will be available for butterfly-viewing season.

They are members of the aster plant family - most are natives of the Americas.

The seeds frankly, look like plant trash - thin, brown scraps, half the size of a dime. Taking them out of the packet can make a gardener wonder if someone sold them a joke pack - these things can't grow into big fat nectar plants!

I planted them into a flat with many planting holes so I could keep track of their progress.  Unfortunately I didn't notice at planting time how many planting holes were seeded so I can't report on the germination rate of this buck-thirty-nine packet of seeds.

  They rooted really well.
To protect the seedlings during the process, use a plastic knife or something similar to loosen all four edges.



The roots are three times as long as the little seedling is tall.
To separate seedlings' roots, wet the soil and carefully tease them apart.

Zinnias give a lot of color for the investment. The only problem I've had with them is that if there is a wet period or if they are watered from overhead, the leaves will get powdery mildew - splotchy grey spots. Planting them far enough apart will allow air circulation and reduce the likelihood of mildew.

These are the zinnias from that pack of seeds - 7.22.12
Also, the varieties of Zinnia augustifolia and the pinwheel zinnias are resistant to powdery mildew.

Planted in masses of a dozen plants, they will bloom, drop seed, make new plants and bloom until a killing frost.

Zinnia Seed dot com has lots of cool looking varieties -


Have fun with this easy garden project. It's not too late to start seeds.

2 comments:

Canna Terra said...

Those seedlings are really cheap! And, they will surely look amazing to almost any type of garden.

Martha said...

Growing from seed is a passion of mine even though a garden club friend likened it to having an equal number of puppies to care for!