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Top 5 Annuals for the Southeast


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Petunias
Petunias are durable flowers that will bloom from early spring to late fall in full sunlight.
Petunias are durable flowers that will bloom from early spring to late fall in full sunlight.

­The petunia performs well in heat and along the coast. These traits make it perfect for the Southeastern region. Like the two other flowers discussed previously in this article, the petunia is quite easy to grow and maintain. Especially because of the warmer temperatures you find in the Southeast, the petunia will have an extensive flowering stage. You can count on a petunia to flower from the moment spring has s­prung until the first frost.

The petunia flower has five petals that vary slightly between the different varieties. Some petunia petals have points at the tips of each petal, where other petunia petals are more rounded at the tip. The flowers may have a ruffled or fringed look to them. Flowers can come in different sizes, differing between 1 inch and 6 inches (2.5 cm to 15.2 cm) in diameter [source: Russ].

The color choices for the petunia are just as numerous as the pansy color spectrum. The color scheme of the petunia varies. Some petunias have one solid color on the flower, some have different colored veins or outlines and some have a five-pointed star color pattern. If you are specifically looking for a fragrant flower, you should seek out the white and lavender varieties, which appear to have the most perfume-like scent.

The best-suited varieties for the Southeast are the multiflora petunias, the milliflora petunias and the spreading petunias. Multiflora types are good for the garden because they have prolific flowers that grow in masses. Multifloras are also good because they do not get sick with petal diseases that may affect other types. Milliflora petunias are good for the garden because they do not require much upkeep in order to thrive. Milliflora petunias have the smallest flowers of all the petunias but typically have more flowers in one plant than other types. Spreading, also known as trailing, petunias aren't as tall as they are wide. They are suitable for window boxes, hanging baskets or landscaping as groundcover.