Annuals

Which annuals require less maintenance time?

shutterstock_360198251Gardening in itself has become a hobby for many people. From families with spacious backyards to city-dwellers living in apartments, gardening enthusiasts have proven time and again that in almost all places and at almost whatever the time, you can start your own garden. This can be made possible so long as you have the right materials. Space and a vast land are no longer obstacles to achieving this.

If you’re a busybody who likes to brighten up their home with a dash of color, you would want to know which kind of flowers not only look good in your home, but are also low maintenance.

When a plant, particularly an annual, is of low maintenance, it means that it’s easy to grow. You wouldn’t have to invest a lot of time in daily care for this plant as they can be self-sufficient. However, take note that you would still need to do the regular ritual of watering, fertilizing, and exposing them to sunlight. You would also need to make sure that there are no weeds growing around your plants and always check for pests regularly. Here are the top annuals that require the smallest amount of maintenance time.

Diamond Frost euphorbia. Distinctly white or light pink, the diamond frost euphorbia is known to be one of the rabbit-resistant plants out there. Not only that, but a Diamond Frost euphorbia also looks good in any area of your home. To care for this plant, provide partial sun and rich, most soil with sufficient drainage. These kinds of plants love the heat and humidity. You would only need to watch out for nematodes, spider mites, mealybugs and fungal and bacterial diseases. Aside from that though, you’re good to go.

Dragon Wing begonia. Sure to brighten up anyone’s day, the Dragon Wing begonia is known for its bright green leaves and red (or pink) flowers. This flower is often used in hanging baskets or planting beds decoratively. They are also easy to grow all year-round. Even when it’s not in bloom, the wing-shaped leaves in themselves are very attractive. Dragon Wing begonia’s require full sun to part shade, but it can tolerate many conditions: hot and humid, cool and dry. You would only need to repot this in spring as it grows and so it doesn’t become too tight for the begonia’s roots to breathe. They love a lot of sun so you can put them on your windowsill or in a sunny room, and move them outdoors from time to time. Ensure that the pots have drainage holes so you don’t overwater it and turn the flowers yellow.

Lantana. A flower that naturally attracts many butterflies, the Lantana is made of small balls of flowers that change colors once they fade. Newly planted Lantana’s require frequent watering but once they have grown, they require very little maintenance. They also develop a high tolerance for various kinds of conditions especially dry ones. You don’t even need to water this daily. Even a once-a-week shower for them would do. You can also give them a very light dose of fertilizer every once in a while especially during spring. Don’t over-fertilize though as this will hamper their growth. Cut the tips every now and then so they can regrow.

Million Bells. Going by the botanical name Calibrachoa, the Million Bells is a good flower to have in the house for it adds a softer and cozier touch to your interiors. They bloom somewhat like smaller petunias and work well in hanging baskets. They also attract hummingbirds and butterflies a lot. Caring for the million bells only requires minimal work. The soil must be kept moist but not overly-watered or soggy especially in areas where there is too much sun. Fertilizers should be applied periodically. In fact you would need to cut off the tips of your million bells as they are considered to be self-cleaning.

Moss Rose. While most roses are typically one-colored, the moss rose takes a unique feature of being flowers that look like roses but open in a wide array of colors. They bloom open in full sun but in shade, they close. Moss Rose are not high maintenance plants that need specific temperatures to grow in. They are good at tolerating heat and drought, so they don’t need constant watering in order to bloom. It will also thrive in the heat of the summer and can grow from four to six inches tall. The soil, however, must drain well, but you can use rocky or sandy soils for the moss rose.

Pentas. Pentas are beautiful flowers that would look great in hanging beds or even in vases in your own home. Butterflies also love Pentas and get attracted to this kind of flower easily. They are clustered flowers in different shades, but usually are pink, white, lavender or rose. The best thing to keep in mind when taking care of Pentas is to put them in soil that drains well and doesn’t become clogged after watering. Pentas also require a lot of sunlight, but you can leave them in sunny areas for six hours a day at a time. A regular watering schedule is not needed for pentas, only when the top 2 to 4 inches of the soil dry out. Pentas only require fertilization on a monthly basis as well. Thhe best time to fertilize pentas is in spring. Spreading mulch around the plants every spring also helps as the mulch keeps in the moisture, helps deter weed growth, and insulates the roots when it gets cold. Trimming the dead and injured stems from the plants after winter has passed will also help them grow in full bloom come spring.

Overall, there are many other species that are easy to grow and require not that much maintenance. However, when you are looking for a green buddy in your home or a new way to brighten up your place, but not have enough time to redecorate, these plants might come in handy for you.

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