Zahara Zinnia are great choices for fall color in the landscape today on Southern Gardening
When choosing summer annuals, zahara zinnia are tough to beat, especially because they will continue to look good through the fall season. They are tolerant to droughty conditions and have resistance to powdery mildew that can plague other zinnia varieties.
The selection in the zahara series are well branches and will grow up to eighteen inches tall and equally wide. There is a wide range of color from white to coral rose. A favorite of mine is starlight rose. This bi-colored selection has white petals with a splash of deep rose shining from the center. The deep rose coloration is variable though. Perhaps the most exciting are the double flower selections. Double cherry has deep magenta blooms while double fire is a hot scarlet orange. Each have centers that lighten as the flowers mature.
Zahara zinnia should be planted in the landscape in full sun. A key feature to plant is that the color does not bleach out and groan in the sunlight. Amend the flower bed with three to four inches of good quality compost to create a well-drained soil with good fertility. A two to three inch layer of soil after planting will help to preserve a good soil moisture.
Even though zahara zinnia are tolerant to droughty conditions, during periods of periods of extreme drought, supplemental irrigation should be applies. Overhead irrigation should be avoided. The use of soaker hoses or other drip type systems is a superior and more efficient to maintain soil moisture. Planting zahara zinnia is a way to make the fall landscape more beautiful.
Until next time, I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman enjoying our Southern Gardening.