Wednesday, May 15, 2019

6 Tips for Growing Gorgeous Annuals in Pots

As many of you know, I have not always had a green thumb.  I used to kill any plant I got (probably from over watering them) and have had to practice over the years to get better and better at gardening.  Gardening is one of my favorite hobbies now and it's taken probably 5 years to get to the point where I can confidently walk into a garden center and know what to pick out.  I have some fun gardening posts planned for you in the coming weeks.

Every year that I was working on my gardening skills it got a little easier.  Start small with just a flower pot or two and add to your collection once you feel confident caring for them.  My Mother in Law is a great gardener and she's taught me a ton over the years.  I've also gotten better at asking family, friends or gardeners at my local garden centers for help or tips for growing certain plants.

Every year on Mother's Day we head to the store and pick out loads of annuals to plant in my pots.  Each year I add a couple of new pots to my collection and we plant them together as a family.  My kids are loving to garden and enjoy helping me care for our flowers.  This year we planted 25 pots of all shapes and sizes.

Today we are going to talk about ANNUALS - flowers that you have to plant every year.  They don't come back from year to year like perennials do.

Tips for Growing Annuals:
1. Use Miracle Grow Potting Mix.
It's such good stuff to help your flowers GROW.

2. Don't put too many plants in one pot.
It is tempting to fill up the pot with lots of little plants, but each plant will grow and fill up the pot.

3. Pay close attention to their sun/shade needs and select plants according to the sun/shade in the location where you want the pot to live.

4. Water them when they look dry or are a little wilted. 
Most plants don't need water every day.

5. Figure out what kind of pots you like and buy similar ones each year for your collection.  
I love terra cotta pots and green pots so the majority of the pots I buy fit in those categories.  It helps build a really great, eclectic collection.

6. Shop around to find flowers you LOVE.
I picked up flowers at Lowes, Meijer, Aldi and Menards this year.  I also love getting them from Rural King, Farmer's Markets and Local Garden Centers.  Choose all different colors and you'll be happy with your pots.  There are so many shades of pinks, purples and more.  Pick flowers you really enjoy and you'll be happy with your pots.

I'm excited to show you what I picked out this year.  I think I'm done buying annuals and will focus my attention on buying perennials for the rest of the season.  I just love adding perennials to my yard each year since they come back bigger and better every year.  It's such a fun investment in your home to build your gardens up each year.

Polka-Dotty Garden 2019

I tried some new flowers - Red Bicolor Verbena is the name of the hot pink and purple flowers in the corner.   I found those coral double Begonias at Aldi for just $9.99!  I also got some red New Guinea Impatiens that like the sun.

My Meijer has a fun garden center.  I got my very favorite sweet potato vines to add to my pots (neon green vine that grows so pretty!).

Aren't these begonias so pretty?!?  Their tag says Hiemalis Begonia, but I've always called them double begonias.

My Mom tipped me off to a great price on ferns.  Menards has giant Boston Ferns for just $9.99.  One will fill up your whole shopping cart.  I picked up 2 ferns, 2 fern stands for $12.99 each and then they're doing a special for 11% back on your entire purchase this week.  I have never tried to grow outdoor ferns, but I'm hoping I can keep them happy and healthy on my deck.

Must having potting mix.

Here are all my baby pots:
Vinca, vining petunias, sweet potato vine and Celosia is the prettiest fuzzy magenta flower.

Begonias on the table and our new bird bath in the background!  I found it at Menards for just $12.99.  It's plastic and perfectly kid friendly.  I'm hoping our birds learn to love it.  I put it right outside our playroom window seat because I think the kids will love watching the birds play in it.

Impatiens, Petunias, Verbina and Dianthus.

Solid color Verbena and Geraniums.  My mom always planted those when we were growing up so they remind me of her.

Begonias and Impatiens.

 Sweet Potato Vine, Begonias and New Guinea Impatiens.  They all love the sun.

We have a tricky growing spot in our backyard by our garage.  I wanted to plant pots on each side of the garage door, but ran into a problem - can you see it??

One side gets FULL sun and the other side gets SHADE.  So I had to come up with a solution that would work for both sides and grow to look similar.

Sunpatiens on the left.

Impatiens on the right.  

Sunpatiens love the sun.  Impatiens love the shade!  I picked out the exact same color in each flower so that they'll grow and look very similar.  Hooray!

I love to garden with these cuties!  It's taken some practice, but they're actually pretty good helpers now.  They try really hard not to pick flowers that are in pots (because we work hard to grow them) and they like to help water our flowers every few days.

Do you have any gardening questions for me??  Any tricky areas that give you trouble?  Need some plant suggestions for your pots?  Just tell me if you've got a shady spot or a sunny spot and I've got TONS of favorites to recommend.


  1. So pretty! It took me a while to get my green thumb too and figure out what plants liked my porches!! I'm hoping to plant my herb garden this afternoon!

  2. Such great info! I hope I develop a green thumb some day!

  3. Love all your flowers. I swear by the miracle grow fertilizer you add to water and repotting my ferns so they don't get so root wrapped. Yay for summer and color and flowers!

  4. Can you come be my gardener? :) Your yard looks so pretty!!


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