We have become so reliant on the garden nursery or big box store to meet our plant needs that many of us don’t even know our grandparents or great-grandparents would have planted many of their spring-flowering annuals as seeds in fall.
Wait … fall?
That’s right. These are the flowers we typically pick up as seedlings in very early spring. Or, if we are very committed gardeners, we might start seeds for these annuals in winter. Often, though, these flowers that prefer cooler temperatures are only getting started when hot weather cuts them down.
These are HARDY ANNUALS, and though they are not perennial they CAN survive cool or even cold temperatures.
Hardy annuals are great candidates for fall sowing in many climates. If sown in fall, they can begin to grow before winter and then once the very first spring days arrive, they leap into action. The result is buckets of flowers long before the first heatwaves.
Here are some flowers to consider sowing this fall (if you are unsure: check their “winter hardiness zone” and give it a try!):
And this book is wonderful if you’d like to learn more about the world of cool season flower growing: Cool Flowers by Lisa Mason Ziegler