Monthly Flower Care Calendar


January

  • Plant seeds of alyssum, bachelor's button, California poppy, canduytuft, dianthus, gysophila, larkspur, linaria, pansy, petunia, phlox, poppy, sweet pea, and verbena.
  • Plant bulbs; agapanthus, amaryllis, crinum, freesia, hyacinth, gloriosa, ranunculus, etc.

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February

  • Start seeds indoors of ageratum, sweet alyssum, celosia, marigold, phlox, verbena, cosmos, dusty miller, petunia, impatiens, zinnias, scarlet sage.
  • Sow seeds of California poppy, candytuft, China aster, dianthus, holly hock, nasturtium outdoors.
  • Plant bulbs of agapanthus, amaryllis, calla, dahlia, freesia, gloriosa, lily, and gladiolus.  Plant a few gladiolus every ten days to extend the blooming period.

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March

  • Plant bulbs such as amaryllis, canna, caladium, gloriosa, lily, dahlia, and gladiolus.  Plant a few gladiolus every ten days to extend the blooming period.
  • Plant bedding plants or seeds of ageratum, begonia, impatiens, marigold, petunia, pansy, sweet alyssum, celosia, nasturtium, cosmos, gaillardia, phlox, and balsam.  Include a few plants that do well in the summer heat such as vinca, portulaca, zinnia, marigold, and some varieties of begonia.  For color in the shade, plant coleus, impatiens, wax begonias, caldium, and certain hostas.
  • Provide bedding plants with enough room to develop./  Crowding plants may increase the possibility of disease problems because of poor air circulation.
  • Make sure that the soil in your plant beds contain organic matter.  If not, add organic matter and mix well with existing soil.
  • Fertilize amaryllis with bulb food to improve blooms.
  • Fertilize annuals about every two weeks with a soluble fertilizer.
  • Start monitoring roses for signs of fungus and insects.

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April

  • Warm season annuals can be planted now.
  • For color in a shaded area, try caladiums,  Plant tubers about 2 inches deep and 15 inches apart in soil amended with organic matter.
  • Plant bulbs such as canna, dahlia, daylily, gloriosa, lily, and lycoris.  Continue planting gladiolus every 2 weeks.
  • When spring bulbs begin to bloom, fertilize with a bulb fertilizer.
  • Divide chrysanthemums if necessary and pinch out the tips to encourage bushing.  Root the tips.
  • Monitor daylilies for aphids.  Check between new leaves and use a soap spray if necessary.
  • Add a few butterfly nectar plants to the garden.  Try zinnias, firespike, gomphrena, salvias, and butterfly bush.

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May

  • Continue planting summer annuals.  Try a few that you have never grown before.
  • Plant seeds of sweet alyssum, balsam, celosia, late cosmos, dahlia, gailardia, globe amaranth, marigold, portulaca, salvia, sunflower, and zinnia.
  • Plant bulbs of caladium, lycoris (hurricane lily is yellow, spider lily is red), dahlia, glorosia lily, gladiolus, and daylilies.
  • Prune the faded flowers of climbing roses back to the first five-leaflet to stimulate repeat flowering.
  • When canna blossoms fade, remove the flowering stalk just above the first set of leaves so a new flowering stalk will form.
  • If conditions are hot and dry, monitor verbena for spider mites.  Wash off undersides of leaves with a soap spray every week or two.
  • If your bulbs are overcrowded, you can remove bulbs when the leaves begin to fade.  The bulbs should dry in the sun for a few days, and then remove all the faded leaves.  They can be stored in a warm, dry spot until it is the time to plant them again.
  • Divide crowded and vigorously growing perennials.
  • Remove the flower stalks of coleus to encourage branching and the formation of more colorful leaves.
  • Deadhead bedding plants to promote continued blooming.
  • When the new growth of poinsettias to ten to twelve inches high, prune it back to the last four leaves.
  • Keep roses watered and fertilize when there is a new flush of growth.  If nighttime temperatures are still cool, monitor for powdery mildew and wash off with water.

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June

  • Choose a few of the more heat tolerant plants for sunny spots in the landscape.  Consider globe amaranth, zinnia, melapodium, pentas, and ducksfoot coleus.
  • Start seeds of late cosmos, gaillardia, protulaca, zinnia, sweet allysum.
  • Transplant chrysanthemums and pinch back to promote branching.
  • Marigolds and geraniums will almost be finished blooming.  They will bloom again when the weather becomes cooler.  Remove the dead flowers when they fade and fertilize with a soluble fertilizer.
  • Feed all annuals with a balanced plant food.
  • Remove faded leaves from caladiums to keep them looking fresh.
  • Amaryllis, crinum, daylilies, Easter lilies, and other bulbs need to store energy to produce big blooms next year.  Use a bulb fertilizer such as 9-9-6.  Do not cut foliage from the plants until it dies completely.
  • When the blooms fade on cannas, cut the flower stalks back to the uppermost leaf.  A new flower stalk will then form.

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July

  • Sow seeds of late cosmos, gaillardia, portulaca, and zinnia.
  • Continue to monitor roses for fungus and spray with a fungicide when needed.  Fertilize with a rose fertilizer or with 1/4 cup of 8-8-8 per plant.
  • Remove faded flowers of salvia and marigolds.
  • Cut back zinnias, portulacas, and verbena that you planted several months ago.
  • Continue to remove faded flower stalks of cannas so new flower stalks will sprout.

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August

  • Start seeds of butterfly weed, purple coneflower, and coreopsis indoors,  These can be transplanted into the garden later in the Fall.
  • Cut back impatiens and salvias and fertilize to promote new, more colorful growth.
  • Plant perennials such as ruellia, Philippine violet, firespike, and daylily.
  • Direct sow seeds of late cosmos, lupine, candytuft, and nicotiana.
  • Plant ajuga, amaryllis, Louisiana iris, ginger lily, and daylilies.
  • Clean up perennial clumps by removing faded flowers and apply a light application of fertilizer.
  • The dahlias to stakes.  Continue to disbud if large blooms are desired.
  • The Gulf Fritillary is beginning to lay egg on passion vine.  Keep chemical sprays away from the plant so the butterflies can develop.
  • This is the last month to pinch back mums and poinsettias to produce brushing.  Be careful not to disbud the plants.  If you buy near mature mums for color, do not pinch back.

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September

  • Prepare flower beds for cool season annuals.  Remove any weeds and mix in organic matter.
  • Start seed of calendula, larkspur, bachelor button, cleome, pansy, snapdragon, alyssum, candytuft, dianthus, petunias, verbena, and marigolds.
  • Continue to monitor roses for insect and disease problems, such as rose chafers, thrips, and powdery mildew.
  • Divide perennials such as daylily, stokesia, Easter lily, Shasta daisy, canna, violet, coneflower, amaryllis, mondo grass, and liriope.
  • Rejuvenate summer bedding plants by judiciously pruning the softwood.  Be careful not to cut into the hardwood.  Keep the plants well watered and fertilize with a liquid 20-20-20 or 1/3 cup of 6-6-6 per 25 square feet of planted area.
  • Order your spring flowering bulbs now and then refrigerate for 6 weeks before planting.  Place in a paper bag and store in the crisper, but not with fruit.

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October

  • Continue to divide perennials.
  • Set out chrysanthemums, calendulas, dianthus, snapdragon, petunias, and pansies.  Wait until next month to plant ornamental cabbage or kale or they will bolt.
  • Plant seeds of candytuft, cornflower, pansy, larkspur, sweet peas, Sweet William, phlox, dianthus, snapdragon, bachelor buttons, delphinium, foxglove, poppies, and sweet alyssum.  Seeds of larkspur should be chilled in the refrigerator for a week before planting.
  • Refrigerate tulip and hyacinth to be planted in 6-8 weeks.
  • Carefully watch young annuals and water when necessary.  When plants have at least three pairs of leaves, pinch back to produce lateral branches.
  • Prepared beds for anemone, Dutch iris, hyacinth, and early flowering narcissus bulbs about two weeks before planting.  Mix organic matter into the soil and add superphosphate at the rate of 5 lbs. per 1000 sq. ft.

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November

  • Continue planting seeds of sweet peas, California poppy, petunias, dianthus, Bachelor buttons, and sweet alyssum.
  • Plant pansies, snapdragons, and calendulas.  Set out ornamental cabbage and kale.
  • After chrysanthemums finish blooming, prune back to 3 inches above the ground.
  • Plant daffodils, narcissus, lilies, anemone, and other bulbs at weekly intervals for a succession of blooms. These plants have been pre-chilled.  Refrigerate tulip and hyacinth for later planting.
  • Blooming cactus are short day plants which start flowering when days get shorter.  Keep them away from artificial light sources such as street or porch lights at night.  Wait until buds appear to water.  Use a liquid fertilizer (15-30-15) every two weeks during blooming.

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December

  • Plant bulbs of amaryllis, crinum. Dutch iris, lilies, tulip and hyacinth.  Make sure that bulbs such as tulip and hyacinth have been pre-chilled for six weeks.
  • Plant bulbs in well drained soil, in a sunny to lightly shaded site.  Tulips, anemones, ranunculuses, and hyacinths should be treated as annuals and removed after they bloom in the Spring.

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Butterfly on Azalea flower