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Best Way To Plant Flowers From Pots

There is nothing better than color in the garden, whether it’s in container plantings or in the ground, annuals or perennials. And if you like starting your own plants before transplanting them in the garden, we’ve got good news for you — there are numerous flowers that take well to this, and it’s quite easy to do.

What we’re talking about is starting flowers from seed, then transplanting them into your garden.

Little sunflower sprout in white pot

Why start flowers from seed?

If you like saving money, starting flowers from seed is for you. If you like being a part of the entire life cycle of a plant, this is also for you. And if you’re an avid DIYer, this is really for you. Starting flowers from seeds allows you to be hands-on in your garden, giving you an amazing sense of accomplishment and connection.

Four seed packets spread out for Zinnia and Marigold flowers

What flowers should I start?

There are annual flowers and perennial flowers. Annuals live for just that one growing season, then die. Don’t be sad; they can live on in your compost pile. Perennials live for a number of years, but are typically dormant in the wintertime. Here are some suggestions of each type that you can easily grow from seed in a pot now, then transplant in your garden later. Hint: The larger the seed, the easier to start.

  • Annuals: Although fast-growing annuals like sunflowers, zinnias, and calendulas will all grow from seed started in a pot or seeding tray, it’s their fast-growing Ninja skills that make them better suited to direct sowing in the ground from the beginning. Because they grow so quickly, they develop deeper roots early on and don’t like being disturbed. So if you want to start annual flowers in pots and then transplant them, go for annuals like marigold, morning glory, cosmos, ageratum, celosia, and gomphrena.
  • Perennials: Remember that because perennial flowers are longer-lived than annuals, some can take much longer to bloom when started from seed. We’re talking a couple of years here. So, if your goal is to start perennial flowers from seed in order to have blooms in your garden this year, focus on those that will deliver the goods — coreopsis, dianthus, oxeye, blanket flower, gaura, yarrow, and shasta daisy. Perennials grown from seed also take a bit longer to germinate, so don’t worry if you don’t see them poking their heads out of the soil during the first week.

Kellogg Garden Organics

All Natural Potting Mix

**Product not available in AZ, CA, HI, NV, UT. For a comparable product in these states click here.

Person repotting flowers in garden

When do I transplant them into the garden?

Keep in mind that the larger the flowers grow in their container, the more difficult time they will have enjoying a transplant. They’ve put down their roots and are happy where they are, thank you. So aim to transplant anytime after they’ve developed a couple of sets of true leaves (the first two pairs you’ll see aren’t true leaves — start counting after those appear), but your best bet is to read up on a particular flower’s preferences from the beginning to ensure success.

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Collage of woman planting flowers with text, "Flowers that transition from pot to garden"


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  1. When you are choosing plants for your container make sure that they will play well together. This means that all the plants in one pot should all require the same amount of light and moisture. If you combine plants with different needs, some of them will not thrive. So, for example, if you have a plant that requires full sun, you want all the plants you choose for that pot to also require full sun. If you have a plant that likes to dry out between waterings, you don t want to put it in a pot with plants that like it wet. Plant tags are critical. They will tell you how big your plant will get, how much light, water, and food it needs and how much care it will need. The tag will also tell you if your plant is annual or perennial and if it s a perennial, what zones it will survive in.

    • Great reminder, thank you for adding that! It is very important to plan ahead and keep in mind the different growing conditions required for each when choosing seeds or plants to transfer into a larger garden.

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