How to Raise Flowers

Overview

Raising flower gardens from seeds and bulbs is a satisfying and inexpensive way to add color to your landscaping. When planting, choose a variety of flowers with different blooming periods ranging from early spring to fall so that there are always fresh blooms outdoors. Flowers are started from seeds, bulbs or root sections. You can also purchase seedlings, but they may cost more. Flowers require specific care depending on the variety, but all types still have many things in common.

Step 1

Plant at the right time. Plant most bulbs in fall six weeks before the first frost date in your area. Plant seeds outdoors in spring after all danger of frost is past or start them indoors four to eight weeks before the expected last frost.

Step 2

Prepare the garden beds by removing all weeds, dead plant material and other debris. Loosen up the soil with a shovel or hoe, and then work in 3 inches of compost into the soil.

Step 3

Plant bulbs 4 to 6 inches beneath the soil surface with the root end on the bottom. Plant seeds to a depth of twice their diameter, except for fine seeds which are sown directly on the soil surface then covered with 1/8 inch of soil. Plant seedlings to the same depth they were in their pots.

Step 4

Space the plants as directed on the plant stake or seed envelope. Space bulbs between 3 to 8 inches apart depending on variety.

Step 5

Water the plants well but not so much that there is standing water. Most flower varieties need between 1 and 3 inches of water a week.

Step 6

Cover the flower beds in a 2 inch layer of organic mulch to prevent weeds and preserve soil moisture. Mulching also keeps the roots cool which is beneficial to flowers.

Step 7

Remove the flower heads after the blooms begin to wilt to prevent seed formation and help encourage further blooming. Pinch or cut off with sharp shears, removing the spent bloom and the seed head that is forming.

Step 8

Fertilize only as recommended for each variety. For most flowers, use a general purpose or phosphorous-rich fertilizer at planting, and a nitrogen-rich or balanced fertilizer after blooming ends.

Tips and Warnings

  • Treat insects and disease problems immediately with either organic or chemical controls. Never remove perennial foliage until it dies back on its own, or the flowers won't bloom next year.

Things You'll Need

  • Seeds
  • Shovel
  • Hoe
  • Compost
  • Mulch
  • Shears
  • Fertilizer

References

  • Plant an Instant Flower Garden
Keywords: raising flowers, planting a flower garden, caring for plants

About this Author

Jenny Harrington has been a freelance writer since 2006. Her published articles have appeared in various print and online publications. Previously, she owned her own business, selling handmade items online, wholesale and at crafts fairs. Harrington's specialties include small business information, crafting, decorating and gardening.