A bright, bloomin’ bed of annuals is one of the best ways to say "summer." So, keep on plantin’ ’em anywhere you think things need a little brightening up. And, besides the bright lights, they’re a cinch to care for—what could be better than that? Annuals hardly need any attention, yet they’ll give you loads of blooms—day after day—throughout most of the summer, and even into the fall. They’re a great addition to just about any yard or garden. Why, once you learn how easy they are to grow, I’ll bet you’ll want a whole yard full of ’em! So, get ready to grow up a storm, and have a whole lot of fun in the process! Remember, anyone can grow annuals, so relax.
Once your annuals have become established, but before July’s heat really sets in, give ’em a light mulch of compost or shredded leaves. This helps hold in moisture and gives the plants a little something to snack on. Avoid gravel and stone dust, since they tend to get too hot.
Keep your annuals deadheaded and pinched back so you have compact, bushy, and bloomin’ plants all season long.
Your annuals need about 3" of water a week, between you and the rain. So make sure you’re picking up any slack! Soak ’em at soil level in the early morning for best results. If you do have to water from overhead, give the blooms a gentle shake when you’re done to dry ’em.
Feeding your annuals doesn’t have to be a chore—just give ’em leftovers. Take your vegetable-matter kitchen scraps out to the garden, and bury them around your plants. It’s a great way to recycle your kitchen waste, and feed your garden at the same time!
If your annuals seem to be on the brink of exhaustion come the dog days of summer, pinch ’em back severely and give ’em a dose of my Summer Rejuvenating Tonic: ¼ cup of beer, 1 tbsp. of corn syrup, 1 tbsp. of Plant Shampoo, and 1 tbsp. of 15-30-15 fertilizer. Mix all of these ingredients in 1 gallon of water, and slowly dribble the solution around the roots of your plants. This potent pick-me-up will get ’em back on their feet in no time!