How to Care for Creeping Zinnia

Overview

Creeping Zinnia, or Sanvitalia, is an annual that thrives in hot, humid summers. It's a compact plant that grows to be about 6 inches tall and does well in hanging baskets, rock gardens or as edging along sidewalks. The plant blooms from late spring to early fall with blooms that are bright yellow, orange and white. It prefers light, sandy soils that are well drained.

Step 1

Make sure the creeping zinnia is in the full sun. It will not get the nourishment it needs if it's in a shaded area.

Step 2

Use a pH test kit to see if the soil is between 5.5 and 6.5, as the plant requires. Obtain a kit from a hardware store or nursery.

Step 3

Increase pH by 1.0 point (if it is below 5.5) to make it more alkaline, by adding 4 oz. of hydrated lime per square yard for sandy soil. If you have loamy soil, add 8 oz. of lime (see Resources). To make it more acidic (decreasing the pH by 1.0 point), mix 1.2 oz. of ground rock sulfur per square yard for sandy soils and 3.6 oz. per square yard for other soil types.

Step 4

Fertilize the plant once or twice during the growing season. Lightly add a water-soluble fertilizer. Follow the manufacturer's instructions.

Step 5

Check the soil regularly with your finger. Make sure it's very slightly moist, as creeping zinnias are somewhat drought-tolerant and don't need a lot of water.

Step 6

Pull the plants out when the frost kills them and throw them away.

Things You'll Need

  • pH test kit
  • Hydrated lime
  • Ground rock sulfur
  • Fertilizer
  • Water

References

  • Dave's Garden
  • Plant-Biology.com
  • BackyardGardener.com

Who Can Help

  • About Soil pH
Keywords: creeping zinnias, sanvitalia, annual

About this Author

Based in New York State, Kelly Shetsky started writing in 1999. She is a broadcast journalist-turned Director of Marketing and Public Relations and has experience researching, writing, producing and reporting. She writes for several websites, specializing in gardening, medical, health and fitness, entertainment and travel. Shetsky has a Bachelor of Arts in communications from Marist College.