Growing and Caring for Petunias
Petunias are garden beauties that come in an array of colors, these blooms let us know that spring and summer is here. The first time I was introduced to these garden plants was many, many, many, years ago WOW how time flies, at that time I was working for a private club which was one of those upscale getaways. Only those that were rich or well off stayed at this place, this club had everything it seemed from spas, pools for kids and adults, tennis courts and so on, it was a club that was really nice and it still is to this day even though I am no longer employed there.
Back then I was a groundsman along with my then team and supervisor which did a pretty good job in maintaining the many gardens at this club. One of the plants which we used in abundance was petunias because of its soft texture and beautiful colors was a show stopper which lit up the garden areas.
If you are looking for a plant that can work wonders transforming your garden then consider this garden beauty. I have proven them and have seen what they can do so if you are interested then stick around as we discussed how to successfully grow and care for petunias, with that said here we GROW.
When seeking a location to install your petunias it should be a location that gets full sun.
The soil type for these garden beauties can be from clay, sandy to well-drained soil.
When watering petunias give them a good soaking and allow the soil to dry out somewhat between watering before watering again.
To keep your petunias looking great through spring and summer providing a balanced fertilizer such as 12-12-12 or 10-10-10 will work wonders. Before applying fertilizers read and follow the manufacturer’s label because the label is the law.
Garden insect pests of petunias
Keeping an eye out for and treating these garden pests will keep your petunias in tip-top shape.
- Budworm Caterpillars
Aphids cause damage by sucking the plant’s fluids, to bring these garden insect pets under control a strong spray of water from your garden hose will eliminate them. Be careful however because petunias are delicate and will break easily. The use of insecticidal soap will offer some help. Read and follow the manufactures label before applying.
Budworm caterpillars cause damage by eating the plant parts because these plants are delicate the destruction can be server. The use of Bt will bring them under control. Read and follow the manufacturer’s label before use.
Diseases of petunias
Be on the lookout for these diseases.
- Soft Rot
- Gray Mold
Both of these diseases are encouraged when there is constant moisture like during the rainy months. It is best from the start to install species (petunias) that can take this type of moisture and still survive.
Ideas where to install petunias
1. Petunias can be grouped and installed in a garden plant bed.
2. Can be planted in a group along a fenced area
3. Can be planted in a group along a walled area.
4. What about installing them in containers and placing the containers on either side of your front door entrance.
5. Plant them in containers and place the containers on your patio or porch area.
6. Install them alongside a garden walking pathway.
7. What about installing them in a hanging basket?
Container grown petunias
Container gardening is a great way to grow plants because of the advantage of moving your plants to a safer or secure area during adverse conditions. When installing petunias in a container the container should be large enough, give the proper spacing of plants to allow proper air circulation don’t crown the container.
A good potting soil that has good drainage is a must for your petunias to survive. The container should have drain holes also to allow excess water to drain through. Place the container in an area that gets the full sun. When watering give your petunias a good soaking until the water comes out of the drain holes, allow the soil to dry out somewhat before giving your petunias another drink. Fertilizer as discussed earlier and keep an eye out also for garden insect pests.
Growing petunias from hanging baskets
A great way also to grow petunias is from hanging baskets. The baskets should have drain holes to allow water to escape. Many years ago I work with baskets that were made out of a material that resembles coconut husk. When these baskets were watered the water drain through the small opening of this material.
A basket of this sort should be hung on the outside, plastic hanging baskets can be kept indoors just ensure that a saucer is placed on the inside of the basket to collect the water. If you have to give your petunias a good soaking then remove the basket to the outdoors water thoroughly, allow water to drain, and then return the basket.
Deadheading your petunias is a great way to keep them blooming. Look for flowers that are spent or wilting and remove them at the stem beneath the base of the flowers with a hand pruner. This deadheading will trick them into producing more flowers which is a win for you. Once you have deadhead your petunias fertilizer as mentioned earlier and watch as your petunias grow bushy with beautiful fresh blooms.
The final word
Petunias are annuals that can really bring that WOW to your garden landscapes, I love the colorful beautiful bloom which is so amazing. I have worked with them so many times and I can tell you that these garden beauties are a must so go ahead and give them a try trust me you will be glad that you did as your garden burst with so many beautiful colors that is a show stopper. With that said let’s get started and reap the rewards.