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Container Planting Instructions

  1. 1. Be prepared to plant your plants as soon as possible after they arrive. You should have your pot picked out and potting soil ready. The longer your plants wait to be planted, the harder it is for them to grow to their best potential! If you can’t plant immediately, take your plants out of the box and water them. Keep them moist, but not wet, until you can plant them.
  2. Fill the container with potting soil loosely to approximately 3-4" below the rim, mixing slow-release fertilizer into the top 6 inches. We recommend our Advanced Formula Plant Food, at the rate indicated on the package. A second application as a top dressing in midsummer will help re-energize your plants for fall blooming. You can also use liquid fertilizer, as mentioned under Continuing Care, below.
  3. Gently remove plants from growing/shipping containers.
  4. Place your plants 6-8" apart in the filled container, with cascading plants near the edge and upright growers in the center.
  5. Fill the container with the remaining soil to slightly below the rim. The top of the root ball should be at soil level.
  6. Water the container thoroughly, so all air pockets are displaced. This should be done outside on the patio or lawn because some soil particles will also flow through the drainage holes. As your container plants grow and fill in, they will require watering more frequently, especially in the hot, dry days of summer. The best way to determine if your container needs water is to check the soil by sticking your finger into it. If it feels dry, water your container!

Soil Preparation for Planting in the Garden

  1. Till the soil to a depth of 12-15", either with a spade or a rototiller.
  2. Organic matter helps retain moisture and aids good drainage. Add a generous 2-4" layer of dehydrated manure, garden compost or peat moss, mixing it thoroughly into the soil. Most annuals are heavy feeders, so unless your plants prefer infertile soil, mix in some slow-release fertilizer, such as our Advanced Formula Plant Food, at the rate indicated on the package.
  3. Plant at the spacing indicated on the label, with the root ball top at soil level. Firm soil gently around the plant.
  4. Water in your plants well. The first 2-3 weeks, keep the ground moist, but not wet, while your plants are establishing roots.

Continuing Care

  1. In the garden, your annuals require at least 1" of rain (or equivalent watering) each week. A 4-6" layer of mulch will help conserve moisture and keep weeding to a minimum. Removing faded flowers will encourage repeat blooming.
  2. Since annuals expend a lot of energy bearing their multitude of blooms, they often benefit from some added nutrients. We recommend using Spring Hill’s Advanced Formula Plant Food, a slow-release fertilizer that will last several months. You can top dress in midsummer with one more application of slow-release fertilizer if your plants are heavy feeders.
  3. Container plantings especially need extra nutrients, as the frequent watering during the hot weather of summer will leach nutrients out of the pot. A liquid fertilizer or plant food is often beneficial if your plants are heavy feeders. Use the strength indicated on the label of your fertilizer. For particularly heavy feeders, like Petunias, you may feed as often as every two weeks, and even more frequently in the hottest part of the summer. You can back off on the feeding and watering by the end of summer, when the weather begins to cool.