California Poppy border this walking path. Photo by Mark (Work the Angles)

To give your garden a super charged boost of colour this spring and summer, consider going with annuals.  There are so many that you can choose from, and with our simple instructions you are sure to have a winning look in your front or back garden.

Personally I love annuals in the front garden, they can add such a vibrant look to the front of the house, and are a favourite with real estates who are trying to pretty up a drab house.

1. Choose where you want to place your annuals, they perform best in direct sunshine, so keep this in mind when choosing a location.  They look great clumped together in rows, so make the perfect border to a driveway, a fence, front of house or around the edge of established gardens.  If you want to be able to move them around, long rectangular pots are great for annuals.

2. Select the colour combination.  Annuals are best if grouped in like colours, so if for example you went for white and purple you would clump a group of purple together, then a group of white.  If you alternated plant by plant the colour would not be as intense as grouping them in larger numbers.

3. Choose the annuals for your garden. This is not too difficult most annuals grow really well in Australia, but to be sure ask the nursery or store where you purchase them to confirm they will grow well in your site.  Alternatively check out Virtual Flowers which displays a complete A-Z list of annuals in Australia.

4. Prepare the soil for your annuals by mixing in compost with the soil and digging a deep channel channel for the plants.  The hole should be deep enough for the entire root ball of the plant to be buried and wide enough that you can fit at least two plants side by side.   The length of your channel should be the length of the area you want to cover.

5. Arrange your plants and then plant them in twos, clumped closely together.  You hardly need any dirt between the two plants.  A good way to do this is to plant six of one colour in the same configuration as a punnet then move on to the next punnet.

6. Water all your plants as soon as they are in the soil, ensuring that you water nice and low to avoid getting water on the leaves.  This will ensure they leaves will not get burnt.

7. To make your annuals last longer ensure they get watered regularly (you can do this with a watering can to save water).  Water early in the morning or last thing in the evening to avoid the sun burning the leaves of the plants.  At this time also quickly check your plants and take off any faded blooms.  This will prevent the plant going to seed and will ensure that it lives longer.

For all your plant or soil needs check out the DIY Bargain Bin Soil section and the DIY Bargain Bin Plants and Seeds section for your gardening needs this spring.


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