Containers Part 4: Annuals that Like to Hang Around


Secret Gardens by Crystal's top 5 trailing annuals

I love using gorgeous ceramic and fiberglass pots as a foundation to a great container garden and on occassion only use plants with an upright or vase-shaped growth habit so the pot may be viewed at all times. But since I have a soft spot for plants with a trailing habit I include many in my designs.

Trailing plants - annuals in particular - soften the overall look of the container while complementing the rest of the arrangement. There are many different annual varieties to choose from for both sunny and shady conditions.

Here is a list of my top five semi-trailing and trailing annuals featuring some new varieties for 2015:

1. Trailing Petunias

Pretty much a staple for the sunny container, right? And for good reason! Fertilize them on a regular basis and they preform wonderfully. Some of the newer varieties claim to require less deadheading (although I deadhead all of them for better bloom count). They are available in wide range of colors with differently sized flowers and various growth habits.

A few petunias stay compact such as the Potunia series while Supertunias have a slightly larger mounding/trailing habit. A new one to look out for this year would be the really great yellow variety Supertunia® Limoncello. As yellow petunias are difficult to develope, up until now the choices have been dissapointing. I am hopefull for Limoncello.

photo credit greenhouseproductionnews.com

Supertunia® Limoncello photo credit greenhouse product news

The vigorous Wave series can be massive come August and overtake most of the pot. A better solution may be the new EasyWave Velour series as they tend to behave themselves a little more and have a velvety texture. I would still plant one per pot, unless the container is large.

Easy Wave Red Velour photo credit Park Seed

EasyWave Red photo credit pahls.com

EasyWave Burgundy Velour photo credit Park Seed

EasyWave Burgundy photo credit Parkseed

EasyWave Berry Velour photo credit Park Seed

Easy Wave Velour photo credit Parkseed

2.Calibrachoa or Million Bells

This may be the perfect trailer for the sunny and part sun container or basket.Available in a wide range of color combinations of small flowers covering this plant all season long. And no deadheading required - honest! Ok, once again I have been known to deadhead these guys, especially after a long rain as it speeds up bloom time. Most often this is just a matter of giving the whole plant a little haircut, which not only removes spent blooms but also promotes branching, making a fuller, thicker plant. Win-win.

True Trailing Calibrachoa will lay flatter and trail down lower over the pot than other varieties while Superbells have a more speading habit with larger flowers. All are gorgeous. New to look for this year:

Superbells Frostfire photo credit Proven Winners

superbells frostfire photocredit waysidegardens.com

C.Trailing Red. Previous red million bells have had a mounding/semi-trailing habit.

Photo credit Suntorycollection.com

C. Trailing Red photo credit suntorycollection.com

I adore the Minifamous Double series, they remind me of little roses. In fact I may have to underplant some of my container roses with them this year. This new guy is Double Chiffon, photo credit Park Seed.