Paint your garden with the colors of flowers | THE COMPLEAT HOME GARDENER

Combining colors in a container garden is a lot like painting a picture and many of our most famous artists have been gardeners as well.

Get thee to a nursery this second week of May because you now have the green light to fill window boxes, plant up porch pots and turn your patio into a blooming wonderland of color.

Combining colors in a container garden is a lot like painting a picture and many of our most famous artists have been gardeners as well. I’ll be speaking this week in Sumner about Art and Artists in the garden (check my website at www.binettigarden.com for details) but these three types of petunias will help you paint your own summer color with success:

Superbells Calibrachoa hybrids – more compact for small spaces

These bright bloomers look like mini petunias only they are much better behaved. In our climate the Superbells resist rain and wind damage and fill up a container with compact and tidy blooms in enticing bicolor combinations. Mix the Superbells with spiky plants and trailing plants or pot up a bunch together for a massive display. If you have a small space these make a big impression.

Coralberry Punch Calibrachoa

A bi-color that blooms orange with a dark eye and looks great in a terra cotta pot or next to a brick wall or walkway. You don’t need to remove the spent blossoms – just feed and water for repeating blooms. Plant with orange and lime green coleus and purple Sweet potato vine for a trio with a tropical punch.

Supertunia Petunia Hybrids – mid size blooms and medium size plants

Bicolor blooms make the Supertunia hybrids perfect for combining with foliage plants or using as specimens. The show stopper that started the sensation was a purple and lime green petunia called “Pretty Much Picasso” and this year you can find the Supertunia “Picasso in Pink” with the same lime green edging around the petals but with a bright pink center.

The vivid colors mean you can turn up the color volume by adding these around an evergreen shrub or cascading from a mixed basket. Supertunias are super easy to grow in sun or semi shade.

Wave Petunias – oceans of color from ground cover petunias that will swamp the garden with a sea of blooms.

If you have a large space to fill, look for the Wave petunias that will spread out to three feet wide and one foot tall. The Wave petunias come in solid shades of white, pink and purple and you can mix and match to make stripes or drifts of color.

Like all petunias the Wave petunias do best in full sun in soil that drains well but can be kept moist during the dry months of August and September. You don’t need to deadhead or prune back these spreading petunias but you do need to give them room to grow.

Tips for growing petunias: These are annual plants which mean they live for just one summer but will bloom until the first hard frost, usually until October.

Petunias are heat lovers and love full sun but will adapt to half day of sun with less blooms.

Like most annuals petunias need plenty of fertilizer to keep pumping out the flowers and the soil should be kept just barely moist. Work some slow release plant food into the soil at planting time and then feed every two to three weeks with a liquid plant food as well.

If your petunias grow too long and leggy you can cut them back to just a few pair of leaves and fertilize with a liquid plant food. In a couple of weeks they’ll be covered with more blooms on a more compact plant. In general, the bigger the bloom the larger the plant and the more space the petunia will need.

Garden Gossip on Petunias – the double flowering petunia varieties look great in the greenhouse but they do not hold up well in rainy weather. Unless you have a protected spot to grow them out of the rain you’ll be disappointed.


Talk to us

Please share your story tips by emailing editor@rentonreporter.com.

To share your opinion for publication, submit a letter through our website https://www.rentonreporter.com/submit-letter/. Include your name, address and daytime phone number. (We’ll only publish your name and hometown.) Please keep letters to 300 words or less.

More in Life

Photo by Haley Ausbun
                                During halftime, athletes and coaches have individual meetings, while parents watch a video prepared by Highlands Community Church for whatever biblical principle teams are learning about that week at the Upward sports league.
Sports that help kids grow

Local church league gives to neighborhood

Alyx Chamberlain, Jennifer Keil and Mario Pilapil, courtesy of Rotary Club of Renton.
Teachers of the Month for February

As part of their commitment to education, and to celebrate teachers in… Continue reading

Local scouts greet attendants at the Renton First United Methodist Church on Sunday, Feb. 9, 2020. Photo courtesy of Patrick Montemerlo.
Local scouts celebrate big milestones

Scouts in Boy Scouts of America celebrated Scout Sunday, a national opportunity… Continue reading

Luis Hernandez. Courtesy of Renton Schools
He didn’t care much for class until his teacher encouraged his photography

Local Renton student’s photographs featured in exhibit in Spain

Photo by Haley Ausbun. The International Lion Dance & Martial Arts Team performed in honor of Lunar New Year at the event, Jan. 28 at Renton Technical College 2020 Celebrity Chef event. RTC President Kevin McCarthy and Advanced Sommelier Christopher Chan participated in the demonstration, offering heads of lettuce to the lions. The Lion Dance is meant to bring good luck.
A tasty Lunar New Year

Renton Technical College got a tasty start to the new year with… Continue reading

Casey Pearson, Natalie Schlappi and Oliver Taylor are Renton Rotary Club’s January 2020 Teachers of the Month.
Teachers of the Month for January

As part of their commitment to education, and to celebrate teachers in… Continue reading

Photo by Haley Ausbun. On Jan.22 about 60 St. Anthony’s students put together gift bags with school supplies for their sister school in Haiti, with the help of the WE and NFL Huddle for Good initiative. The schools connected after the devastating earthquake in Haiti killed a young missionary connected to the parish in Renton.
Students volunteer for sister school in Haiti

St. Anthony’s Parish works with WE, NFL for students

Photo courtesy of city of Renton. Council President Ruth Pérez speaks at Centro Rendu de San Vicente de Paul for the Reyes Magos event.
Census campaign joins Reyes Magos celebration

Members of Renton’s Hispanic community gathered Jan. 10 at Centro Rendu de… Continue reading

Photos courtesy of Renton School District.
                                Students across the district are hosting events, assemblies, celebrations of the life and work of Martin Luther King, Jr. Pictured are Benson Hill Elementary students reenacting lunch counter sit-ins and other Civil Rights actions against segregation. The district stated in a tweet that schools blend these activities into existing work to teach students history; Black scholars in math, science, medicine; segregation; race; and other topics of U.S. social and political climate.
Renton students honor Doctor King

Students across the district are hosting events, assemblies, celebrations of the life… Continue reading

Photo courtesy of Carol Kaelson. Christel Tucker, a Renton resident and flight attendant, stands at the wheel at Wheel of Fortune. Her episode airs Monday, Jan. 20.
Rentonite spins the wheel of her dreams

Local finds herself winning thousands on Wheel of Fortune

Photo courtesy of Patrick Dodd
                                Patrick Dodd and his father, Stan Dodd, at Hannegan Pass, Cooper Lake Trail. After Stan Dodd died in 2019, Patrick decided to dedicate 2020 to hiking and raising money to Fred Hutch Cancer Research Center.
He lost his dad, now he hikes for him

Local man turns to nature, blogging to fund cancer research

Photo by Haley Ausbun. Have you visited the Highlands new brewhouse? The new Bickersons Brewhouse opened on Nov. 9. Two months later, Jan. 9, business leaders and the Renton Chamber of Commerce celebrated its opening with a ribbon cutting, featuring owners Frank Castro and Shaunn Siekawitch. Go bicker with the “Bickersons” at 4710 NE Fourth St., Renton.
Ribbon cut for new Renton brewhouse

Photo by Haley Ausbun. Have you visited the Highlands new brewhouse? The… Continue reading