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Old March 16, 2018   #1
Cole_Robbie
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Default Flowers to Grow from Plugs, Not Seed

I'm still new to the flower-selling business, and it's taking me a while to learn what *not* to try growing from seed. Flowers like zinnias, marigolds, and sunflowers are easy from seed. I am even having good luck with dahlias. My celosia looks like it came up and is growing ok.

But for a lot of flowers, it is apparent that if one is trying to sell them as a live plant, buying rooted cuttings is the way to go. So if anyone wants to speed along my learning curve as to what I should buy in cutting form instead of seed, I would be happy to listen. Last fall I ordered mums and Montauk Daisies from cuttings, and they grew well.
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Old March 16, 2018   #2
FourOaks
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Something else to consider, time frame. Some seeds germinate and start their life off so, so, slooooooowly. I currently have these that I started from seed:

Verbena, Phlox, Impatiens, Coleus, Portulaca, Petunia.

They have germinated, but good Lord they grow slow. I wouldnt hesitate to buy plugs if the opportunity fell in my lap. A flower that you may try though, that goes great from seed, "Stock". All sorts of colors available. We are growing for a first time this year.


I think the best bet for flowers, would be to invest in some High Pressure Sodium lights.


I am there with you as far as raising a wide variety of flowers. Its one thing to work at a nursery, its quite another when "you" ARE the nursery.
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Old March 16, 2018   #3
BigVanVader
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I just but bought Wave petunias and calibrocha plugs today. Only way for me to have baskets by Mothers Day.
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Old March 16, 2018   #4
FourOaks
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigVanVader View Post
I just but bought Wave petunias and calibrocha plugs today. Only way for me to have baskets by Mothers Day.
Its the ONLY way.

I need to head to my wholesaler myself to see what they have. I usually get Waves as "liners". They are a little bigger, dont have to buy 512 of them, so you get more variety.
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Old March 16, 2018   #5
MissS
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Plants to start from plugs:
Lantana, geranium, bidens, cuphea, New Guinea Impatience, the larger Lobelia, nemesia, some salvia, torenia, Osteospermum, verbena, angelonia, coleus, crossandra, torenia, vinca, gerbera daisy, some begonia's, along with the wave type petunias and your calibrocha. Many of your perennials too.
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Old March 16, 2018   #6
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I don't know whether it needs to be seeded or plugged, but a basket of nasturtiums is drop dead gorgeous. 42 days to bloom.

Nan
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Old March 17, 2018   #7
BigVanVader
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FourOaks View Post
Its the ONLY way.

I need to head to my wholesaler myself to see what they have. I usually get Waves as "liners". They are a little bigger, dont have to buy 512 of them, so you get more variety.
My grower sells them buy the hundred. $35 each. This is my first year doing HBs so I stayed basic and didn't buy many. Got red, white, blue, waves and orange and yellow Cali. The plan is red white and blue baskets for the fourth and doing mainly single colors for Mothers day. I need to go get a pink now that I think about it. Cool thing is I can hopefully root the waves as they need clipping.
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Old March 17, 2018   #8
clkeiper
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Basket variety geraniums, dark red and Ivy geraniums. you need to start any seeds in November to get them to plant up by Jan here.
Fillers... don't forget the fillers.You need to purchase plugs for these and your baskets need them. bacopa, sweet potato vine etc...
I have found that there are just some things that are nicer plants if you buy plugs such as "surfina" varieties of petunias. they don't set seed so there is no dead heading..
the hybrid varieties of bacopa "white Betty" is much nicer than seed started OP bacopa.
I start seeds in December for basket material for some of my plants. they do take a long time to grow to transplant size. you either babysit and pay to heat a house or buy plugs and be done with it, but you need to plan ahead. they need 15 weeks lead time if you want specific material to work with... or you take what is available if you have some place to pick up liners.
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Old March 17, 2018   #9
BigVanVader
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Can you give me some ideas on basic basket combos? In trying to limit money invested until I see how sells go. Should I just do single color baskets? My supplier has tons of stuff and it is a little overwhelming.
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Old March 17, 2018   #10
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how many baskets are you planning? that will determine how many plants you need to buy. and that depends on the size of each plant you want for your baskets. Surfina petunias get pretty large and one per basket is sufficient, but I never like to put only one in. if it dies (and it has happened) there is nothing else to look at. so I do put in other fillers or another variety (cheaper because is is usually something I have started from seed) of petunias for contrast in flower size or color. Usually other varieties of petunias I put in 3 of and a filler 3 of about a hands width in from the rim in a circle alternating the plant types.


Red is the top seller. red petunias, red verbena, red geraniums.... red. I mix petunias, bacopa, verbena, sweet potato vine (only 1 of those in the center as they get pretty large) ... whatever I have....
Petunias are the main stay in most baskets. I have mixed colors for contrast and done mono colors baskets.
red and white always sells. pink/blue/purple are probably next followed by white orange/yellow.... red mixed with blue or purple, red with yellow, red with red, red with white...
geraniums ( ivy or calliope) mostly red (and a few burgundy) with white bacopa or verbena or petunias.
I don't like to grow only ONE type of plant in a basket. if one dies they probably will all die if it isn't wind or storm damage.
Petunias are mildew prone. keep them well ventilated..
verbena once it is established is pretty hardy and roots where ever it touches the soil. but until then it seems to be fungal susceptible..
fuchsias - I plant only fuchsias in the basket. nothing else.

begonias.. only begonias.
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Old March 17, 2018   #11
GrowingCoastal
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How about red geranium, white bacopa and blue lobelia.
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Old March 17, 2018   #12
Cole_Robbie
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MissS View Post
Plants to start from plugs:
Lantana, geranium, bidens, cuphea, New Guinea Impatience, the larger Lobelia, nemesia, some salvia, torenia, Osteospermum, verbena, angelonia, coleus, crossandra, torenia, vinca, gerbera daisy, some begonia's, along with the wave type petunias and your calibrocha. Many of your perennials too.
Many items on this list I purchased from seed, and are still sitting in my bathroom, either unsprouted, or as tiny plants that don't grow.

Thanks to everyone for the help.
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Old March 17, 2018   #13
clkeiper
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cole_Robbie View Post
Many items on this list I purchased from seed, and are still sitting in my bathroom, either unsprouted, or as tiny plants that don't grow.

Thanks to everyone for the help.
Most of this should have been started no later than Jan 1st for me. You are a zone ahead of me if I recall. So probably at least Dec first? In a bathroom doesn't give enough quality light for growth. They need a greenhouse or a supplemental light setup.and even that isn't the same a sunlight. I am not growing pot.. I can't afford the lights needed for real indoor growing.
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Old March 17, 2018   #14
Nan_PA_6b
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Geraniums: salmon with red and/or white. The salmon is an awesome color.

2 sweet potato vines: one lime & one purple, along with something flowering; maybe those orange & yellow calis.

I don't grow for market; this is just what I like.

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Old March 17, 2018   #15
clkeiper
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Quote:
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Geraniums: salmon with red and/or white. The salmon is an awesome color..........


Nan
I sell very few of this color. I would say if you do any limit them to a couple. Salmon just hardly moves. Nor does orange. Or scarlet.... Deep dark red is what moves the fastest. I want to sell my baskets...not keep watering them. I tell my customers who want something special or specific to order it early....in January.
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