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FutureStarrPetunia Ground Coveror
Grandifloras have large single or double flowers. Single grandifloras produce blooms that are up to 5 inches across. Some single varieties have ruffled or fringed petals. Double grandifloras produce double, fringed flowers. Generally, grandifloras (single and double) don’t flower as heavily as the other types. Also, the flowers don’t hold up as well during rainy weather. Plants may become unkempt and straggly by late summer. Popular grandiflora petunias include varieties in the Dreams, Ultra, and Storm Series. (A series is a group of closely related varieties with uniform characteristics, such as height, spread, and flowering habit. Generally, the only characteristic that varies within a series is flower color.
Although petunias are easy to grow outdoors from transplants, they may prove more challenging for beginning gardeners to start from seed. The advantages of starting petunias indoors are that you have a wider choice of varieties from which to choose, and you can raise large quantities of plants for less money. But it takes 10 to 12 weeks before petunias are big enough to plant out, so they need to be started early (about March first in northern climates). This means there's ample opportunity for problems to develop between seeding and the final product!Groundcover or "spreading" petunias are only about six inches tall, but spread so rapidly that they cover a huge area over one growing season, provided they're watered and fertilized frequently. This makes them ideal for scrambling down a hillside garden, or planting atop a retaining wall. They're also amazing in hanging baskets and window boxes, where they trail two to three feet or more over the summer. When grown in full sunlight, they are so covered by flowers that you hardly see any foliage. “Wave” petunias are a common type of spreading petunia.
Today's petunias offer enormous variety: single and double blooms, ruffled or smooth petals, striped, veined or solid colors, mounding and cascading habits, and even some with old-fashioned â€‹fragrance. Most of the petunias sold today are hybrids, developed for specific design purposes, such as bed edging, cascading over hanging baskets, or covering the ground. It's hard to go wrong choosing a petunia these days, but here's some advice for pairing your petunia with your particular design need.Whenever feasible, it's a good idea to remove faded flowers, including the portion below each flower where seeds will develop. This practice, called "deadheading," encourages blooming by preventing seed formation. Although it may not be practical to deadhead masses of petunias in the garden, it's a must for flowering annuals in containers. Deadheading not only helps prolong blooming, it also keeps plants looking fresh, healthy and well-groomed. (Source: extension.umn.edu)