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Annual Flowering Plants in Mississippi

No other group of flowering plants provides as much color as quickly and economically as annuals. Annual plants sprout from seed, flower, set seed, and die within one season. Many flowers, vegetables, and herbs are planted every year as annuals. Other plants may live longer in their native lands, but do not survive the heat or cold of the mid-south and are best treated as annuals.

Most annuals are planted in spring and are killed by frost in the fall. However, some, including pansies, ornamental cabbage, and dill are tolerant of our winters and are best planted in the fall for color throughout the winter. These are usually killed by the heat of early summer.

Columbines, such as this Aquilegia Swan blue and white, can thrive in Mississippi landscapes when treated as an annual.Some annuals, such as gomphrena, cosmos, and coreopsis reseed themselves, yielding several years of pleasure with minimal care. Annuals come in a variety of colors, heights, and textures, and their uses are almost unlimited. Unbeatable in masses of solid or mixed colors, annuals are also very effective in small groups or used to soften lines and accent borders.

Many annuals, especially compact varieties, are well suited for containers. Large annuals may be used as specimen or accent plants along the back of a flower or shrub border. Some annuals are vines that may be grown on fences, arbors, porch rails, or trellises.

Annuals are inexpensive, especially when grown from seed. However, they do require soil preparation, fertilization, irrigation, weeding, and pest control. Most are native to semiarid regions of the world and require full sunshine to survive.

Species such as impatiens are native to dark woodland floors and flourish in shady sites, such as covered patios, narrow courtyards, or heavily wooded sites.

Annual gardens are easily established in the smallest and most restrictive of spaces as well as the harsh conditions of a large suburban garden. Their relatively shallow root systems require only a modest amount of soil. Gardeners with sizable yards quickly learn the trick of planting one or two easy-to-grow beds of massed annuals to decorate patios, walks, or pools. Apartment dwellers can achieve a splash of color with a few well-placed pots, wash tubs, or planter boxes of annuals.

Annuals that need full sun, such as periwinkle and marigold, grow and flower best when they receive at least 4 to 6 hours of direct sunlight each day. Woodland species perform best under partial to heavy shade.

Prevent root diseases and other problems associated with waterlogged soil by avoiding areas where water stands after a heavy rain. Also avoid areas near large trees and shrubs that may have many greedy, thirsty feeder roots.

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Publications

Publication Number: P3247
Publication Number: P3615
Publication Number: P3589

News

Orange flowers with dark centers bloom on a small plant.
Filed Under: Flower Gardens July 15, 2024

I have enjoyed Echinacea coneflowers in my landscape for many years, and I find that these striking perennials bring a burst of vivid color to gardens. While recently visiting the home of Dave Overturf and Ginger Wentz in Long Beach, I couldn't help but notice the beautiful Echinacea coneflowers they have in their landscape.

Clusters of white flowers bloom on bushes in a landscape.
Filed Under: Flower Gardens July 8, 2024

Hydrangeas are one of my favorite plants to use in areas of my landscape that get part shade and full shade. This year, my hydrangeas have really put on a show with their colorful blooms.

One of the most popular and widely grown species, the bigleaf hydrangea, has always fascinated me with its ability to change color based on the soil pH and aluminum availability.

A bee hangs onto a slender stem that has white flowers.
Filed Under: Flower Gardens July 1, 2024

One of my favorite gardening experiences is seeing plants spontaneously appear in various spots in my home garden and landscape.

I love these plant volunteers, and I let them flourish in unexpected places around my garden. Their surprise appearances make the garden feel alive and ever-changing.

Success Stories

A smiling woman, holding a bowl of rocks in one hand and a bowl of sandy colored dirt in the other, standing in from of paintings hung on a line to dry.
Volume 10 Number 2

Robin Whitfield, who gave the child the paper, stands awestruck, watching her friend’s daughter use the flower to draw and color on the page.

 

A woman smiling and holding a planter full of lettuce.
Volume 10 Number 1

Susie Harmon laughs when she relates her granddaughter’s observation of her favorite pastime.

A woman with a straw hat and round-framed glasses holding a bunch of flowers and smiling.
Volume 10 Number 1

A broken-down car on a Sunday afternoon in 1983 led two attorneys to purchase forestland in Hancock County. Forty years and about 500 acres later, La Terre Farms in Kiln has wide-ranging industries that include a holiday greenery business and cut flowers grown for florists across the Gulf Coast and New Orleans.

Watch

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