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January 16th 2024

How to Grow Zinnias

Written by
Floret

Zinnias are one of the easiest cut flowers to grow. They are the perfect first crop for beginning gardeners and are reliable, prolific producers no matter where you garden. 

In addition to churning out buckets and buckets of beautiful, long-stemmed blooms that are perfect for cutting, they are well-loved by pollinators. 

Zinnias resent cold weather and prefer to be planted after things have warmed up a bit. 

Many gardeners in warmer parts of the world are able to successfully direct-seed zinnias straight into the garden, but here in cool Washington we start our plants early in the greenhouse, 4 to 6 weeks before our last spring frost. 

Plants are then tucked into the field once the weather has sufficiently warmed and all danger of frost has passed.

Like every flower grown on our farm, we try to give them the best start possible and prepare our planting beds with a generous dose of compost and organic fertilizer. Learn more about soil preparation here.

Once planting beds are prepared, we lay down drip irrigation lines and then cover the beds with a layer of preburned landscape fabric. Using fabric is not necessary for success, but here on the farm, we use it to increase heat and suppress weeds.

Plants are spaced 9 to 12 in (23 to 30 cm) apart and watered deeply one to two times per week depending on the weather. If given good soil and a steady supply of water, plants can get huge and will require some type of support. 

If grown in long rows, plants can be corralled by pounding heavy stakes or T-posts around the perimeter of the bed and using bailing twine to create a string-lined box to hold the plants upright. If you’re growing zinnias in your garden beds, individual plants can be tied to stakes with twine. 

The secret to getting the most abundant flower production and longest stems from your zinnias is pinching them when they are young. When plants are 8 to 12 in (20 to 30 cm) tall, take sharp pruners and snip the top 3 to 4 in (7 to 10 cm) off the plant, just above a set of leaves. This signals the plant to send up multiple stems from below where the cut was made. 

During spells of hot, dry weather, zinnias are prone to powdery mildew. Providing good airflow around the plants and making sure that they aren’t experiencing any drought stress will help minimize disease pressure. 

We’ve found that preventatively spraying a mixture of Cease and MilStop (both organic fungicides) every 7 to 10 days keeps it at bay. 

If you’re not regularly harvesting your zinnias, be sure to deadhead any spent blooms to help focus the plant’s energy on producing new flowers and not going to seed.

Zinnias need to be picked when they are fully ripe or they won’t last in the vase. To tell whether a zinnia is ready to harvest, use the “wiggle test.” Simply grab the stem about 8 in (20 cm) down from the flower head and gently shake it. If the stem is droopy or bends, it is not ready to cut. If the stem is stiff and remains erect, it is ready to harvest. 

Zinnias are considered a “dirty” flower and benefit from a drop or two of bleach in their water. Flowers are very cold sensitive, so don’t put them in the cooler. If floral preservative is added to the water, zinnias should last about a week in the vase.

I’ve been growing zinnias since the very beginning, and every year I fall more and more in love with them. If you want to see all of my favorite varieties, check out the zinnia section of the Floret Library. 

I would love to hear about your experience with this wonderful group of plants. Do you grow zinnias or plan to add them to your garden this coming season? If so, what are your favorite varieties, or what new treasures are you adding to your wish list?


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135 Comments

  1. Amy on

    I’m growing the Golden Hour variety, and they are thriving in the Texas heat. They look beautiful in my garden plot next to the Spun Sugar celosia (which is showing up mostly peachy-pink right now). And as much as I love a rainbow bouquet of zinnias, there’s something so satisfying about a vase full of these with their subtle variations of peach with rose accents. They’ve also got the longest stems of any variety I have growing, which is nice for arranging.

    Reply
  2. Schantel on

    I absolutely love Zinnias and I am super excited to try your new varieties. I have moved to the the coast and for some reason my zinnias after picking start to get brown spots. Especially the light colors. Have you ever experienced this with your zinnias? Curious to know what I’m doing wrong because when I lived inland they were the easiest of blooms to grow.

    Reply
  3. Pauline Myre on

    I have just started growing zinnias this year, i started seeds in my porch and i planted about 60 plants in my small garden in mid to late May. I live in Ottawa Canada Zone 5. 50 percent are growing beautifylly and the rest are badly eaten by some bug??? , i tried organic spray to save as many as I can, not sure how i can protect them better. Also where can i buy Floret seeds of celosia and zinnias on line. Just discovered your show. Just ordered your first book as a birthday gift to myself. Getting it later today. Sooooo looking forward to reading it. I am 74 years old and have been growing flowers for 45 years. A great passion including flower photography. Thanks for caring about flowers and our planet. Pauline Myre from Ottawa Canada

    Reply
  4. Beverley Simmons on

    First time growing zinnias. I am growing for an event for daughter-in-law. We have had heavy rains for two weeks now. When I was able to plant I did not pinch. They were only 4” high. Can I pinch at 6? It feels like they are slow to start would this be a correct observation?

    Reply
    • Team Floret on

      Hi Beverley, As soon as they have a couple sets of leaves, you can pinch them, which will help them branch. Happy gardening!

  5. Tracey Brewer on

    Hi, I bought several types of Zinnia seeds from Floret this year. I love your seeds and I love growing flowers. I have a little backyard garden. I am growing them in my garden here in Coastal Virginia . They get 6-8 hours of sun I am having the worst time with brown leafs. Also my plants grew in with a lot of their leafs curled up. I’ve been spraying them with the copper fungicide to stop whatever fungus is causing the brown leafs. But I can’t get it 100 percent gone. I have also had a problem with ants. And other insects so I put a flower and vegetable safe insecticide on them. But the brown leaves all started before I used the treatments. Any suggestions? I really am working so hard to have a healthy garden that grows a lot of pretty flowers!

    Reply
  6. Rebecca on

    I’ve started a zinnia bed. The earwigs have eaten so many leaves and the plants look dreadful. Some plants are down to just stems. So sad. Any tips? Thanks.

    Reply
    • Team Floret on

      Rebecca- So sorry about the earwigs! I’d recommend asking your local farm and garden store for an organic solution. They should have some ideas that will help!

  7. Flower Girl in Tacoma on

    Life happened this spring and even though I was ready to start my zinnias and dahlias from you indoors, that didn’t happen. It is now mid-June. Is it too late to plant (direct sow) outside?

    Reply
    • Team Floret on

      Depending on where you live, seeds can still be planted and reach maturity before the end of the growing season. Check the days to maturity listed on the seed packet, then count backwards from your expected first fall frost date to find out how late the seeds can be planted. The days to flower starts from the date the seed is planted. I hope this helps!

  8. Bernadette on

    I’m in Florida, zone 9b. My zinnias are growing beautifully but the flower seems quite small. These are the first flowers of the seedlings – is that normal? Will the flower head get larger as the plant matures a bit more?

    Reply
    • Team Floret on

      Hi Bernadette! The flowers usually get larger as the season progresses.

  9. Tosha on

    Hi there,

    It says you space plants 9-12 inches apart, but in the 3rd picture down it looks more like every 4-6 inches – which is best??

    Thank you!

    Reply
    • Team Floret on

      Hi Tosha- We usually space them about 9 inches apart.

  10. Dave Robinson on

    My wife was given some of your zinnea seeds for Mother’s Day from our daughter, they were coming up at the 2 leaf stage and I , like an idiot, took after them when weeding. I know that your shipping season has ended but, it it at all possible to sell and send a replacement package?They were the “alpenglow” variety.
    Thank you,
    Dave R.

    Reply
    • Team Floret on

      Hi Dave! We’ll email you and help with this.

  11. Paul Moore on

    My seedlings are a month old and roughly three inches tall. I’m noticing brown spots on some of the leaves. I’m watering at least once per week. I’m still watering them from below in leak proof tray and never let the tray sit in the water for more than an hour. I have them directly under growing lights and I’m not sure why the plants are starting to look stressed. Any advice?

    Reply
  12. Lisa Hastings on

    My zinnias are out and growing well, however, something is eating them. Any recommendations on what to put on them?

    Reply
  13. Brie on

    Do you have a recommendation on pest deterrent? I’m in CA, and planted my zinnias outside a few weeks ago. Quite a few off plants leaves have been eaten to basically nothing. I am not sure if it is an insect, a slug? Hoping to save the rest of them with some kind of recommended protection. Thank you.

    Reply
  14. Lisa Lawrence on

    I’m getting ready to direct sow my seeds.. how many seeds per hole do you recommend?

    Reply
  15. Julie on

    Hi. A few weeks ago I made the bad decision of putting my zinnia seedlings out in the sunshine, thinking I was doing something good for them. Unfortulately, I burned some of them. I am beginning to plant my zinnias. My question is, will my burned ones recover and grow OK? I’m so sad. :(

    Reply
  16. Kristine LeRoss she/her on

    Is it too late to plant zinnia seeds directly outdoors into a deck container? How long will it take to flower?

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      Go for it! It’s not too late at all. They generally take about 75-95 days to flower.

  17. Shelby on

    My Floret Alpenglow, Precious Metals, Victorian Wedding, and Dawn Creek Pastel zinnias are all doing amazing! I got almost 100% germination on each variety and their vigor is impressive. Can’t wait to see the blooms!!!

    Reply
  18. Emma Starck on

    My seedlings are very leggy.. what do I do? I have turned off the grow light but worried I may have ruined them

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      They need the lights closer to the tops of the seedlings, about 2-3 inches, and left on for 14-16 hours each day. They’re leggy because they’re not getting enough light. Maybe put a small fan close by to help stregthen the stems.

    • Team Floret on

      We recommend planting zinnias about 9 inches apart, so I’d suggest 2-3 seedlings per container. If you pinch them above the second set of leaves, they will branch out and create a nice, full plant with lots of blooms.

  19. Brooke on

    My zinnias are about two weeks old and a few have leaves that are curling a little bit and 2 have some brown spots around the edges. I wondering if I might be over watering? The lights are 2/3 inches above and hardly give off any heat, so I don’t think that’s it.

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      It could be overwatering. Let the tops of the soil dry before watering and see if that helps.

  20. tiffanie on

    I would like to plant my zinnias in a risen smaller bed- we don’t have a large area to grow, and i started them in paper towels- just waiting for them to sprout, then i can plant directly into the soil in the bed, correct? Thank you!

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      When temperatures are consistantly above 55 degrees in your area then it’s safe to plant them directly in the ground.

  21. Ellie on

    Will my zinnia seeds still sprout without the dome lid? I have a heat mat and lights..

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      The dome lids create humidity and ideal germinating conditions. Siran wrap works well, too, if you don’t have the lids.

  22. Victoria on

    Can you overwater seedlings? Mine are struggling to germinate.

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      Yes you can. Only water when the surface of the soil begins to appear dry, then add about an inch of water to the bottom no-hole seed tray for it to wick up into the soil. Drain any excess water after 30 minutes so the soil doesn’t become overly saturated. I hope this helps!

  23. Melissa on

    I want to direct sow (broadcast) my zinnia seeds in zone 7B – when I can I do this?
    M

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      As soon as the temperatures are consistantly warm (around 55-60 degrees). There’s direct sowing instructions in the growing guide booklet that came with your seed order.

  24. Betsy on

    I am planting 3 of your zinnia varieties and want to try and save seeds this summer. So, I was also wondering how far apart I need to plant different kinds of zinnias to prevent cross pollination. Thanks for all the helpful information you guys provide!

    Reply
  25. Braidy on

    Your tips are very helpful. I can’t emphasize enough how user friendly your guides are. Can you please share the variety of hydrangea shown next to the row of zinnias in the last picture?

    Reply
  26. Julie on

    Hi!

    I Love Zinnias, I bought the giant variety but the blooms were very small. I’m based in Ireland so summers are on average 20(c) 68(f). They are not prolific and the side shoots have very small stems. The soul is rich with nutrients, it gets a good mulch of dung in October so is well rotted down by June when I plant out my Zinnias. What can so do to improve them?

    Reply
  27. Anneli on

    Thank you so much for this “how to grow Zinnias”! I have so much memories from my mom growing them when Inwas a child back in South Africa! We live now in Bulgaria and my first EVER Zinnia seeds will be planted todag, 6 April! The weather is amazing now!!
    Thanks again for all your wonderful ideas and inspiration!!
    Warm Regards

    Reply
  28. Tina on

    I was wondering how far apart you need to plant different varities of zinnias to prevent cross polination, so that I can save seeds for future seasons. Thanks!

    Reply
  29. Parker on

    Hi! I am trying to start some zinnias for the first time and am struggling. I have a giant zinnia seed mix and they germinate well and grow talk relatively quickly but then they just die. Maybe the stem is too weak? Any tips on how to get them to stay alive is much appreciated!

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      It sounds like they need more light. Put a light fixture 3 inches above the tops of the seedlings as soon as they sprout and leave it on for 14-16 hours each day.

  30. Cara Elise on

    Zinnias are my go-to easy flower to grow in central Ohio. They thrive here when the weather is warm. In my opinion–they are really easy to direct seed and also transplants are hard to kill. I even save my own seeds! This flower never lets me done even thought I don’t have the greenest of thumbs. :) Thank you for the advice about powdery mildew. I am going to try those tips this summer.

    Reply
  31. Kendra (Sugarbean Farm) on

    I had great germination with mine too! When they were about 3-4 days after germinating (roots still small, but stem fairly strong), I pulled one of the two out and popped it into an empty seed cell tray and they’re all doing great now a few weeks later. If they’re still young enough and the roots haven’t spread super far in your cell yet, I say try it! (Further context – I planted into 50 cell trays (not soil blocks), so there was some room.

    Reply
  32. Pamela on

    I purchased Alpenglow and very eager to plant. I’m going to start some in the milk jug by winter sowing a few seeds and see how that goes. I’m in zone 6b in Mid Michigan on the Easter shore of Lake Saint Clair. I’m sure they will be beautiful arranged with my Pennycress and Dahlias!

    Reply
  33. Pat on

    Zinnias are the very first flowers I tried to grow and I have only direct seeded them here in the Columbia River Gorge. This year I am starting them from seed hoping to have flowers earlier than when I have direct seeded. I will be starting Floret originals and so excited to do so! I am using 72 plug trays that are about 4″ deep, should I be using something with less depth? Team Floret, thank you for all you do! You’re the BEST!!

    Reply
  34. Betsey Ney on

    Zinnias are very popular with butterflies and that is why I grow them. I have trouble finding varieties that fit my needs. Many of the seeds on the market are fully double, which don’t provide the nectar that I’m looking for. Single or semi-double flowers work well. I would also like something 18 – 30″ tall, so that that they do not need staking. Finally, I’m not looking for mixed colors. Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    Reply
  35. Cherie Grover on

    I planted 2 seeds per hole in a 72 cell of precious metals and 100% germinated. Am I resigned to thin them out to one per cell or would they survive being split up? Lesson learned on Floret germ rates!

    Reply
  36. Rose Strong on

    I just moved to Maine last April (2023) and this will be my first real spring for major planting. I hope to have a couple beds tilled to grow flowers and tomatoes. My number one flower to plant is the zinnia. They last all summer and grow with little maintenance. This year, I’m trying some seed starting instead of purchasing plants. We’ll see what happens!

    Reply
  37. Chandra on

    I’ve heard that starting them early in seed trays and then planting out decreases the number of doubles you get when compared to direct sown seeds. Have you seen this?

    Reply
  38. Alyson D on

    I am in Dallas, TX and LOVE Zinnias. I plant them in the ground at the front of my house and in pots and a massive planter in the backyard. They are awesome! They need very little maintenance, love the heat and continue to bloom when everything else has shriveled up in the hot summer. I just purchased some Floret seeds and cannot wait to plant them when they arrive. Thank you for bringing so much beauty to the world! Love, Love, Love Floret!

    Reply
  39. Josie on

    I too live in the Pacific Northwest….and have not found them an easy crop to start.
    I try to wait till April to start them indoors. But I my unheated attached greenhouse the temperature fluctuates from very warm during sunny days to quite cool at night. And the zinnias never look happy.
    Of course, the ones I buy and transplant into the garden are very happy. But I don’t find them easy to start myself.
    Any tips??

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      Starting them in a controlled environment where the temperatures don’t drop below 60 degrees helps. A heat mat in the evening time will help but then turned off during the day when temperatures increase.

  40. Barb Wenger on

    The only Zinnias I’ve had success with are nursery transplants so this year I’m trying from seed. I’ve gotten decent germination success but can’t seem to plant up at all. I’m in Kansas with tough spring winds so I feel like they need to be hardy before being transplanted outdoors. Any tips, please?

    Reply
  41. Karen Smagala on

    I love zinnias. I grow them in South Australia and they have started to self seed (volunteer). I find when the humidity is higher, the powdery mildew is a problem. They love heat and need very little water to flourish.

    Reply
  42. Amanda on

    I planted a couple rows of Victorian Wedding and Precious Metals about 2-3 weeks ago in Texas (9a). I direct seeded – as I always do with zinnias – and the germination rate has been amazing! I didn’t count the number of seeds I planted, but if I had to guess, I’d put the number very close to 100%.

    My little guys already have their 3rd set of leaves and look great! Can’t wait for blooms.

    Thanks for sharing your hard work – can’t wait to start sharing pics and blooms!

    Reply
  43. Ben D on

    Hi team,
    Do you have any information/video on saving zinnia seeds, and is it ok to save zinnia seeds that have been impacted by powdery mildew?

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      This summer we’ll be sharing a course all about seed saving so be on the lookout for that!

  44. Cindy Nyberg on

    Zinnias were the first flower I ever grew. Red & White candy cane striped from a packet of mixed seeds that my mom gave me. I was in the 2nd grade and love flowers ever since. My daughters began playing in my gardens as soon as they could walk and now, I’m helping them start their own gardens. I cannot wait to try your new Floret Farms Zinnias and have been working to get a nice long border ready for them.

    Joining you to put more flowers in the world.

    Thank you!!!

    Reply
  45. Matia Snyder on

    I am going on my second year of flower gardening and I love it!! This year I am trying to plant all of my own seeds… And zinnias are the ones I have the most of!! My favorite is queeny lime red ♥️ it is just Soo beautiful (all flowers are but yeah 😜)… Thank you Floret for being one of the people to inspire me to grow more flowers!

    Reply
  46. Wanda on

    God morning team Floret,

    I live on Shaw Island, in the San Jauns Islands and am slowly getting my farm going. I am curious where you get your compost locally. Would love to start picking up truck loads when I catch the ferry to the mainland. TIA

    Reply
  47. Brooke Deaton on

    My brother-in-law and niece introduced me to zinnias and I started growing them 3 years ago. And now there are zinnia patches all over our little village. I am just giddy with delight from the moment they begin to bloom! I found Floret Farms and have ordered the Golden Hour seeds – can’t wait! I think Precious Metals will be next!

    Reply
  48. Deanna on

    Can you pinch zinnias before you plant them in the ground? I have many floret originals growing now and I am probably a couple weeks away from hardening off and planting in my raised beds. Can I pinch them in their trays? They are 8” tall already!!

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      Yes, you can pinch them before transplanting or wait until they are transplanted to help with root development.

  49. Carole Shaw on

    Up north (Washington State) we can’t put ours out until after the last frost in April, so you have to be able to get them down in your warm area. :)

    Reply
  50. Peter on

    Would you say with zinnias that they don’t like root disturbance so its best to sow in pots from which you can directly plant into the ground outside rather than sow in a seed tray and have to pot them on?

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      We start ours in 72s and tranplant them without potting up.

  51. Patti on

    I have never grown zinnias. Precious Metals have inspired me! I also got unicorn mix for memorial flower patch for my baby sister, who passed and was the ultimate unicorn. I’m doing these on opposite sides of my house, in hopes of harvesting the seeds. I love that you’re doing what you do, where I grew up working in the fields. Thank you from Vashon Island.

    Reply
  52. Sue King on

    I have never been able to keep seeds going when I start them inside. I am hoping they do good by direct seeding into the soil. Will these reseed themselves if left in the ground in the fall?

    Reply
  53. Laura on

    I am in the very most southern part of Alabama, zone 9A. Can I grow them here? If so, is it too late for this year?? I looooovvveee the varieties that you offer!!

    Reply
  54. Marsha Neher on

    Would you please give more details and specifics about Cease andMilStop. What is your exact recipe and can I get these products on Amazon? I’m in Wenatchee, and I have terrible trouble with powdery mildew. I’ve done all know to prevent, such as plenty of air space, spraying consistently with Neem, watering in the morning or evening…Ugh! Thank you for your advise, and thank you for all you do.

    Reply
  55. Stephanie on

    I will be growing 5 different Zinnia varieties (some Floret Originals) for the first time this year. They are just for pretty looks in our yard as landscaping, cut flowers in my home, and for the bees. I have always loved these flowers and cannot wait to see them when they are all in full bloom!

    Reply
  56. Lisa Riemersma on

    I am OBSESSED with Zinnias! I love seeing photos of your gorgeous Zinnias and reading your oh so helpful tips! I have been planting Zinnia seeds for 30 years. They are my favorite flower planted from seed. So many varieties it is crazy. I also love the fact that they bloom all season and are perfect cut flowers. I have a little plot that is reserved just for them and also mix them in all of my other flower and vegetable gardens.
    I live in zone 6a. I still after all these years have not managed to control the mold issue. It is so frustrating. I of course tried many things and mainly water thru drip hoses on the ground. I say mainly because my husband has a tendency to spray/water everything with the garden hose. (Even my squash and cucumbers ugh) He thinks it has nothing to do with the mold. Any suggestions?

    Reply
  57. Julie on

    Hi BriAnn,
    I am going to start my zinnias indoors. I have heating pads and lights all ready to go.
    After I plant the seeds and place them on a heating pad, do I start the lights also? Or, do I wait until they germinate, take the dome off and remove heat pads and place under the lights?
    I am new to this, but am so excited to grow my first cut flower garden with all the floret seeds!!
    Thank you so much!!

    Reply
  58. Carrie Grayson on

    It looks as if you plant them closer than 9-12 inches. For flower production can I plant closer than that?

    Reply
  59. Kay Antunez de Mayolo on

    Hello – can you please let me know what “preburned landscape fabric” is…thanks.

    Reply
  60. Sharon on

    I grew zinnias for the first time last year. I live on Vancouver Island, close to Victoria and I was a little late out of the gate. I planted them directly into the flower bed and didn’t do anything special with them except sporadically water throughout our drought. I was AMAZED at the amount of flowers they produced. These plants keep on giving and what’s even better is that the deer (last year they travelled around in groups of up to 9!) didn’t touch them. This year I am growing several varieties of zinnias (I’m a little late out of the gate, again) and I will adopt much of what Erin is suggesting and look forward to a bumper crop in my own little cutting garden.

    Reply
  61. Heidi Klammer on

    I have the same question as Teri-Lee. I also wonder how warm they need to be to grow. Mine have germinated and are still tiny but I wonder if I should get them out of their 72 plug trays and pot them up as they have some true leaves (barely). They are under lights but my house is about 60-64 degrees. I started on heat mats but have read to take them off once they germinate.

    Reply
  62. Angela on

    I planted my Floret Original seeds this weekend and they’ve already sprouted. So that’s very exciting!

    Reply
  63. Agnes A Little Flower Farm Baldivis on

    love zinnias and dahlias and roses but most importantly the Lilliput zinnias won me over.
    when I purchased the seed packets I have not realized what the name referred to
    great shock but also great fun sharing the story through my garden tour and flower picking. the Lilliput zinnias are tiny!! and cute and adorable.

    Reply
  64. Nena C on

    Yes I have been growing zinnias for many many years now and they’re so to be admired for their vigor and floriferousness. But I was never really in love with them…so I am so looking forward to growing your Floret Originals and will start the seeds in a week or two ..zone 5b western Montana. Thank you for creating these zinnia varieties and really looking forward to seeing their unique colors!

    Reply
  65. Usha Gupta on

    Thank you very much for the helpful hints of growing Zinnias. Love all your suggestions and posts. Stay blessed always.

    Reply
  66. Teri-Lee Norfolk on

    Hi Erin:
    I have planted a selection of your zinnia seeds in seed trays under a grow lamp . They are doing well and have several sets of leaves. I’m just wondering when/if I can move them into my unheated greenhouse (which does not have grow lights) to finish maturing while the weather warms up. I live on Vancouver Island so have a similar climate to you.

    Reply
  67. sandra groves on

    I planted some by seed 4 weeks ago. I had them on a heating pad and they came up within 1 week. Then they all got very leggy and all but 1 died. I was waiting until they got stronger to thin them out. Should I have thinned them out sooner? The 1 I have left is doing great. I want to start more but I would like to figure out what I did wrong 1st.

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      It could be they weren’t getting enough light causing them to grow leggy and weak. Or the soil dried out or was overly saturated.

  68. S.C.M on

    Hi there! I live in Vancouver, WA. Do you think it’s safe to direct sow the seeds when the danger of frost has passed? I fear I missed the window to start seeds indoors. Thank you!

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      Our last expected frost date is still 4-6 weeks away. I’d suggest starting them indoors.

  69. Jim and Eva Pierce on

    Thanks Erin,
    We’ve always enjoyed zennias, my mom loved them so much back in Texas, always had her drive way lined with Zinnias and Shaggy Popies.

    Reply
  70. Courtney on

    What date do you go by for last frost in Mount Vernon? Your website is such an inspiration, thank you, from a new Skagitonian.

    Reply
  71. Lori G. on

    Recently found a picture of my garden back in 1971 and I was growing zinnias then and every year since! So looking forward to trying the new Floret originals this year. Some of my past favorites are Benary’s Giants, Zowie, Senora, Holi Scarlet and Salmon Profusion.

    Reply
  72. Lisa on

    I’ve fallen in love with zinnias after using your seeds to grow them for several years! I have Benary’s Giant wine, Oklahoma salmon, and am SO excited to have gotten my hands on some Alpenglow this year!! It’s going to be a good summer. :)

    Reply
  73. KaraLee Monroe on

    Thanks for the great info again! I just started my seeds in some flats in my greenhouse last week & already have some germinating! Excited to see those lovely Zinnias you’ve been creating for us! Happy Gardening ~KaraLee

    Reply
  74. Laura McDonald on

    I was always under the impression zinnias did not like being transplanted. This doesn’t seem to be true. Any thoughts ?

    Reply
    • BriAnn, Team Floret on

      They do well when hardened off and transplanted a couple weeks after the last frost date when temps are warmer.

  75. Dana P. on

    Hello Erin and crew!! I started my floret originals 5 weeks ago in my tiny greenhouse. I’m happy to say by the end of next week I will be planting them in my garden. This journey has been a beautiful one. I only discovered zinnias a few years ago and now I can’t get enough of them. As I mentioned before, in comments to floret farms they are planted in memory of my beautiful daughter Madyson.
    Zinnias make my days brighter like she did : ) Thank-you all for helping me in my journey.

    Reply
  76. Krystal on

    I bought Zinnia starts last year at the nursery on a whim and my husband was captivated. So I am starting from seed this year with Oklahoma Ivory seeds that I ordered from Floret. 100% germination 😊. I’m in Seattle, so still have some time before they get planted.

    Reply
  77. Evelyn on

    What can I do about earwigs?

    Reply
  78. Sundy Garland on

    Thank you Erin should good information! I love zinnias and have grown them for years. I fell in love with them in my mother’s garden. She would always plant a row in the vegetable garden. They make the best cut flower.
    I have bought Dawn Creek blush & pastels and your alpenglow, golden hour, unicorn, Victorian wedding, and precious metals I can’t wait to get them started this week.

    Reply
  79. Jeannette on

    I’m so excited to plant the seedlings I started with your seeds. This is my first time. I made a raised bed for them that’s ready and waiting. In OK I’m planning to plant in about 2 weeks. Thank you for your amazing resources. Can’t wait to see some blooms! God bless!

    Reply
  80. Kristen Bennett on

    Thanks for all of the helpful hints! I’ve taken careful notes and am ready for another season!

    Reply
  81. Jen on

    Zinnias love the Walla Walla valley (zone 7A). I just direct sow in June after the soil warms up and they are going gangbusters by August.

    Reply
  82. L J de Kramer on

    I am so excited to start my Floret seeds. But I am not sure if to start indoors or wait to direct seed outdoors. I would love to see how you staked the beds with the post and bailing twine. I only ordered one package of zinnias as to not overwhelm myself, so it would be a small plot.

    Reply
  83. Peggy MacMillan on

    I’m 77 and from Ottawa, Canada (Zone 5a).
    My mother’s favorite flowers were Giant Cactus zinnias and she grew them every year. I bought a package of your Unicorn Mix which I will seed indoors when I return home from Florida in mid April. I’m excited to get going!
    Have you grown giant cactus zinnias?
    I love your website, videos and all the wonderful resources you give us about organic gardening and your business.
    Thanks so much Erin and team!

    Reply
  84. Lilli on

    I’m in 8b/middle Georgia, with a long growing season. We can direct sow zinnias here no problem- the combo of humidity AND heat/drought is a problem though, especially with powdery mildew. The best workaround I’ve found is additional successions. The first sowings are usually in early May, and the last are by July 4th. The first zinnias always look awful by the end of July, so I cut them down and enjoy the later successions instead. Those will bloom from august to the first hard frost here, which is usually early-mid November. It also gives me a chance to swap out color palettes, it’s a feature, not a bug!

    Reply
  85. Janice Svela on

    Thank you Erin for this post… it is most helpful.
    I, also, have been growing zinnias in my beds for numerous years…. They are gorgeous as long as the rabbits don’t get them first.
    I will be trying out your originals this summer… along with my seed. Very anxious to get started. Normally I direct sow but this year will start in the house with help of heating mat and then under lights.
    Last year was the first year I snipped them ….. a game changer.
    I have been told many a photo has been taken of my 4 ft x20 ft zinnia bed… the passersby’s and pollinators/ finches/ hummingbirds LOVE them. I think they wait every summer for the goodies..
    I love all your posts and info… thank you.
    God Bless you/ family and all your hard workers,
    Janice

    Reply
  86. Catherine Forcillo on

    Thank you for the tips on powdery mildew. I’ve been growing zinnias for many years and often struggle with this. Can’t wait to give this product a try. Love your site. Thanks for sharing

    Reply
  87. Louise on

    Just finished our Zinnia season here in Australia
    I am madly seed saving atm
    Would LOVE to have some your varieties over here
    Esp those gorgeous pastels 😍💐

    Reply
  88. M eason on

    Last year I tried to grow zinnias in zone 9 Texas. I had a terrible time with some type of fly I’m going to try again this year I did container. This year I am going to direct sow into the soil when it warms up

    Reply
  89. Cindi on

    I have trouble with the brown spots on leaves later during the season.

    Reply
  90. Cris Avery on

    I started Dawn Creeks blush and Lilliput Salmon inside (zone 5b and we got 21” of snow last Saturday !) since my soil won’t be ready anytime soon. They germinated in 2 days!!! Also did some of your Cosmos seashell mix and same thing. I had to raise my grow lights a bit because they’re growing so fast. So excited.

    Reply
  91. Crystal Bailey on

    They have been a staple in my gardens since I first started gardening. This year I will be growing your original zinnias with mine. I’m so excited to see these beauties in person.

    Reply
  92. Elisabeth on

    They dry really well in silica gel too! I cut the stem to an inch or less. The stem is hollow so after they are dry I stick the blossom onto a wooden skewer and start arranging! Love how they really elevate an arrangement with things like straw flower and celosia.

    Reply
  93. Susan B Peden on

    I love to grow zinnias around the vegetable garden. They attract the Japanese beetles, which can be a mixed blessing if I don’t have the beetle traps out yet! I have grown them under and between the giant sunflowers for a lovely hedge.

    Reply
  94. Jennifer Wolcott on

    My Granddaughter is getting married next September and asked me to do the flowers. She chose Zinnies and I now have 16 packages of seeds. There are so many! I’m planning to start them myself and then stick them all over. (I have been gardening for about 60 years so I do know what I’m getting into.)

    Reply
  95. Nina on

    I would love to learn how to save seeds from zinnias. Please make a video how to so we can continue growing these beautiful flowers !!!!

    Reply
  96. Allison on

    I live in a beautiful part of the world, Hout Bay, Cape Town and have just grown Zinnias for the first time ever…I’m hooked. I have lots of brightly coloured zinnias in amongst my dahlias and they just make me so happy when I see them every morning. They also seem to be quite robust and have coped very well with our nasty Summer wind which is known as the Cape South Easter. It blows, sometimes gale force, and whilst I am hugging my dahlias, tying up and staking them, the Zinnias seem to be fine. What I wouldn’t do to get my hands on some Alpenglow, Precious metals and Unicorn Mix. I wake up dreaming about them. I’m holding thumbs that the shipping might work out for this part of the world.

    Thank you Erin and team for the inspiration.
    Allison x

    Reply
  97. melanie perrone on

    I grow hundreds of purple zinnias in my front yard flower bed every year. last year I was fortunate when even though I didn’t plant them in the spring, they self seeded and had quite a bit of zinnias growing in the bed. this year I look forward to adding a few new varieties of zinnias, along with all the other seeds that the pollinators love.

    Reply
  98. melly on

    My Michigan mother in law would scatter zinnia seeds in the wind come springtime and always had the loveliest blooms alongside her barn. I’ve found them easy to grow in my zone 5 garden too. I’m so excited for your new venture. Congratulations, Floret!

    Reply
  99. Valerie Pagounis on

    I am in zone 6B and have had great luck growing Zinnias for years . I have started seeds indoors & outside using the winter sowing method. I have loved your Oklahoma, Carmines, & Benary’s. I fill my border in the front yard against the fence & all around my raised vegetable garden beds. I can not wait until Feb 6th for all of your Floret everything ! ! I’ve set reminders in my phone, on the wall calendar in the kitchen, a post it note on my computer & one of my daughter’s also set a reminder on her phone, too! We just finished watching your video on You Tube. Thank You for all you do and you have inspired me to start saving seeds this year :)

    Reply
  100. Christy Foster on

    I absolutely love zinnias but have had such a hard time here with brown spot. No matter where on our farm I have tried growing them the brown spot gets them by late August.

    Reply
  101. Jennifer Sevin on

    What type of flower is next to the zinnias in the last picture? Is that a bottle brush hydrangea?

    Reply
  102. Connie Tibbits on

    I have good luck growing zinnias in Wisconsin. I start zinnia seeds indoors and outside to get a longer growing season.

    Reply
  103. Jennifer on

    I’ve had such success with zinnias here in hot, sunny central California. I love the Benary giants, state fair, several of the Oklahomas, and Queen lime red. I also love to save seeds and grow them out again. I’m looking forward to trying some of the new Florets!

    Reply
  104. Maxine on

    New to flower garden, but excited to get started this year. I’m looking at the new lime queen series. I have had a few California giants in my yard for a couple of years and just fell in love with them. Thank you for the inspiration and information. Max Griffith

    Reply

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