Petunia X hybrida

The window-box gardener, pondering how best to use his exiguous space, would get glorious value from a row of petunias grown as annuals. Their trumpet flowers come in all shades of pink and purple, in red, white, yellow or blue, single or double, frilled or plain, striped or bordered, with all the brilliance of circus costumes. The Grandiflora varieties have the largest flowers, the Multifloras are smaller, but more numerous and more given to trailing; all will flower for months on end, from midsummer until the frosts. The one drawback is that petunias do get washy in the ram, but the Fl hybrids are said to be more resistant, and their extra cost hardly matters when so few are needed.

Petunias need light, well-drained soil and should be planted about 9 inches (23 cm) apart, though very large plants will obviously need more space. I personally find the single varieties more shapely than the doubles, with their overcrowded petals, and two colours in a container are more effective than a rainbow mixture.

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