I have a little crush on these zinnias and want to tell the whole world. Their buttery-yellows and apple-greens are perfect together and they mix well with many other cut flowers both fresh and preserved. In the landscape, their 2–4-inch-wide double and single flowers on 4-foot stems are just the right color and height for hummingbirds and later, butterflies—always a thrilling sight.
Sow zinnia in pairs every 9 inches, in average soil and full sun after all threat of frost has passed. The seeds need light to germinate, so cover them with just 1/4-inch of soil, and water gently. Germination may be as quick as 5 days.
To get a jump on the season, start them indoors just a few weeks earlier and give them 14-16 hours of light every day. After last frost, harden off seedlings and transplant about 18 inches apart for good sunlight penetration and air circulation to prevent disease. Water around the plants only when the soil is dry, in the morning so leaves can dry.
Tall zinnias start to flower in 60 days, requiring no fertilizer and very little care. Keep the flowers coming by cutting bouquets every other week.
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