As soon as the New Year celebrations are over and life takes on some semblance of normality, gardeners tend to want to plant flower seedlings again. Many are under the false impression that it’s time to start planting autumn or winter seedlings. This is not so; summer seedlings still are still good for another 10 to 12 weeks. Autumn and winter flower seedlings only start growing to perfection when temperatures and day lengths decrease significantly. So do not expect to find these plants on the shelves until late March.

In the interim, continue selecting from the wide array of summer seedlings that will grow through until the cold of winter sets in. In fact, summer seedlings have a much longer planting window (7 to 8 months) than winter seedlings (a mere 4 to 5 months).

These are but a few of the reliable and dependable flowers that can be planted now:

– Vincas (Catharanthus roseus) withstand extreme heat and sunshine.
– Torenias brighten up shaded parts.
– Zinnias sparkle in the sunshine.
– Begonias flourish in many different parts of the garden.
– Portulacas just love heat and long day length.
– Salvias in a wide range of colours grow almost anywhere, sun or shade.
– Celosias with their little, brightly coloured plume flowers.
– Marigolds just bloom on and on into the winter.
– Browallias available in blue or white bloom for months on end.
– Divine New Guinea Impatiens are great for the shade.