If you are having a wedding in the late summer or fall, and are thinking of growing some of your own wedding flowers, now is the time to plant. Here’s one huge piece of advice for you, however: don’t believe all the descriptions you read in plant and seed catalogs. “Blooms all season” might really mean that the plant flowers in June only…you could define the “season” as “early summer” and the description would be true. So a huge grain of salt, OK?

Get opinions from local sources for what cutting annuals grow best in your area. Call the local Master Gardeners at your cooperative extension, call independent garden centers, or local gardening radio programs. Ask them for cutting flowers that are pretty fool proof in your area. It would be pretty depressing to put all the effort into planting, tending, weeding and deadheading just to have your plants fade before the big event!

That said, here are some standard annuals for cutting flowers that do well in most areas: ‘Blue Horizon’ Ageratum (This is the tall one – only get the one that’s labeled ‘Blue Horizon’ because most of the others are too short.), Dahlias (buy tubers or cuttings if you can and plant them in the late spring/early summer), Zinnias (These like full sun and heat – don’t plant too early in the spring. Zinnias don’t like having their leaves wet either, so don’t water frequently: a deep soaking once a week – using a sprinkler or soaker hoses –  is usually enough.).

Dahlias, ‘Blue Horizon’ Ageratum and Zinnias fill this cutting garden.

If your wedding will be in August, September or October you can’t go wrong with dahlias. In areas with early frost these will go once the temps get cold, however.

Want something unusual for your large arrangements? Like sculptural plants? Plant King Tut Papyrus this spring! It grows four or more feet tall in a couple short months. Use it in the garden or in pots.

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