Calibrachoa for Baskets, Borders, and Butterflies

After I noticed my first Million Bells plant in an area plant nursery a number of years in the past, I instantly fell in love. The tiny petunia-like blossoms have been brilliantly-colored and unbelievably quite a few, and the plant tag promised straightforward care and no dead-heading.  I scooped up a number of colours and fortunately took them dwelling, wanting to see them in my very own backyard – and I wasn’t dissatisfied. I beloved their colour and spreading behavior, and was very pleasantly shocked after they turned out to be a butterfly magnet!

Million Bells is the business identify for calibrachoa, a genus of vegetation intently associated to petunias; they’re additionally offered as Superbells and Mini-Petunias. They’re all hybrids of a species of calibrachoa native to South America, and most are patented and trademarked by the businesses that produce and develop them. You received’t discover seed out there, however thankfully the vegetation are so widespread that gardeners in any a part of the nation shouldn’t have any bother getting their palms on a number of every year.

Although they tolerate some frost and are thought-about hardy in zones 9 – 11, most individuals develop calibrachoa as an annual. In hotter zones, develop it within the cooler seasons, fall by means of spring (they tolerate extra warmth than petunias, however often can’t outlast a Deep South summer season). In cooler areas, plant them exterior after the final frost, and count on prime efficiency all summer season and into fall. Select sunny areas, or these with afternoon shade in hotter climates.

Although not terribly choosy, these vegetation do like common watering (although they’ll’t tolerate soggy soil), and somewhat fertilizer will assist them thrive all through the season. They develop only some inches tall, however unfold properly, in order that they make wonderful selections for hanging baskets or backyard borders. One significantly good strategy to get pleasure from these blooms is so as to add a number of in hanging baskets on shepherd’s hooks in your butterfly backyard – this brings the flowers to eye-level the place you will get one of the best view of the butterflies having fun with them!

If you happen to’re searching for new and fascinating colour combos chances are you’ll not discover at your native nursery, you may attempt ordering vegetation from catalogs and on-line. Park Seed has a wide array of Superbells reside vegetation out there, which they’ll ship proper to your door when planting time arrives. I’m significantly drawn to a brand new cultivar out there this yr known as ‘Lemon Slice’ – the yellow and white stripes make for a number of the most cheerful blooms I’ve ever seen! There are additionally double-bloom variations available on the market now, although I can’t attest to their efficiency.

Do you develop Million Bells? What ideas do you’ve for his or her success? We’d love to listen to your concepts within the feedback.

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