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April Mailbag

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April 16, 2017
It’s spring and the garden and landscape questions are pouring into my office. Let’s answer a couple. (from Becky in Port, Gibson, MS) Gary, I’m looking for a hanging basket plant that will have just loads of flowers all summer long. Any ideas? Becky, great question and do I have the plant for you calibrachoa, also called Million Bells. These plants are perfect for a hanging basket and will be completely covered by flowers up to an inch in diameter. Quite literally the plants seem to produce a million flowers. There are many different series of Million Bells with colors ranging red, orange, yellow, and white. Many flowers have contrasting dark eyes. These plants have dark green foliage that will really show off the flower colors. (from Wayne in Leland, MS) Doc, my grand kids want to grow sunflowers this year. Are there colors besides yellow and when can we plant? Jessie, Leland Wayne, thanks for getting your kids into the garden. Sunflowers come in a wide variety of colors including yellow, white, and a variety of deep shades ranging from burgundy-red to orangey yellows, all having a dark center. There’s a range of sizes from tiny Solar Baby to the huge Russian Mammoth. The garden centers have their seed racks out so I suggest picking up a few different varieties. The kids can start planting now and if they sow some every two weeks you’ll have beautiful sunflowers all summer long. So keep sending in the questions and maybe I’ll answer yours on a future segment. I’m horticulturist Gary Bachman and I’ll see you next time on Southern Gardening.
Department: Agricultural Communications

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