Annuals are the most temporary of plants because they only live one season but the impact they have on the garden makes them a must have plant. Their whole purpose is to add lots of color from spring until frost. Annuals are fast growing, hard working plants and every garden should have them! Flowers bring us joy and a sense of accomplishment when we plant a seed or tiny seedling (read more about how gardening helps our sense of well being at the bottom of the page). 

Annuals are perfect for filling in with pockets of bright, vibrant color. Perennials are an excellent investment because they return year after year, but unfortunately most of them have a ‘bloom season’ that doesn't last all year. Planting annuals is one of the easiest things you can do in your garden to make it colorful and interesting. Feed them with a granular, slow release ‘bloom booster’ fertilizer and add organic matter to the beds each year to get the best performance. 
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Hwy 283, Clermont, Georgia

) Phone: 770.842.2345

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Marigold- African, French
Million Bells
New Guinea Impatiens
Persian Shield
Purple Fountain Grass
Sun Coleus
Vinca (Periwinkle)
Alternanthera (Joseph’s Coat)
Angelonia (Summer Snapdragon)
Argyranthemum (Marguerite Daisy)
Begonia-Wax Leaf, Dragon Wing, Non-Stop
Dahlias (Dwarf)
Diamond Frost Euphorbia
Dianthus (Sweet William)
Double Impatiens
Fuschia (dwarf)
Ivy Geranium

"The vicious circle of anxiety and negative thoughts disappears when I've been in the garden"
Below is a partial listing of the summer annuals that we grow 
Caladium & Black Elephant Ear
Persian Shield & New Guinea Impatiens for shade
Pineapple Sun Coleus
 Flap Jack Kalanchoe
Foliage annuals are grown for their colorful leaves instead of flowers. The Persian Shield, Sun Coleus, Kalanchoe, and Caladium, all pictured here, are perfect examples. There are literally hundreds of colors available of Sun Coleus and they are tough and easy to grow. Bold, colorful foliage adds texture and bright splashes of color without having to rely on flowers.  And when mixed with flowers in pots or flowerbeds, they create magic. 

A few more examples of colorful foliage annuals:

Ornamental Sweet Potato Vine (sun or shade)
Rex Begonia (shade)
Joseph's Coat (sun or shade)
Purple Fountain Grass (sun)
Setcresea "Purple Heart" (sun)
Elephant Ear (sun or shade)

   A mix of  Coleus
Our Greenhouses in Spring 
 Indian Summer Sun Coleus
 Gerber Daisies & Purple Sweet Potato Vine
 Tiger Swallowtail Butterfly on Lantana in our display garden
   "Fireworks" Purple Fountain Grass & Lantana
   Mixed Pot for Shade
We came across this info below while searching for internet links. It explains perfectly why we love to garden and why flowers bring us such joy and even how gardening improves our health. We placed it here on out "Annuals" page because flowers are the universal language of joy and perhaps, more than any other plant, they are the #1 reason WHY we love to garden. 

Grow Better, Feel Better, Garden Longer
by Karen York

A wise gardener and horticultural therapist Gene Rothert has written, “What we tap into in our gardens is not easily rationalized or explained, but it’s something we should never have to give up.”

He’s right, but scientists are taking some small steps in discovering what drives us into our gardens to grovel about in the earth, revel in a bed of peonies and proudly flaunt our dirty fingernails. 
They have found that being in a natural environment lowers blood pressure, reduces muscle tension and increases alpha waves in the brain. In fact, just looking at pictures or videos of nature can reduce stress and lessen negative emotions. No wonder 300 people who were asked to describe the most healing environment for someone in pain and need of comfort described a place full of trees, water, greenery and stone. Gardeners certainly know this and even non-gardeners recognize it intuitively. Public gardens across the U.S. were packed in the wake of September 11. 

Many gardeners when asked why they garden respond that they find it an escape from the stresses of work, family pressure, the pace of daily activities, etc. Although stress is subjective (my stress could be your exhilaration) and varies in degree, one thing is certain: our health is closely related to how well we cope with it. I’m convinced that the increase in home gardening is in direct proportion to the amount of stress in our lives.

I recall a fascinating television documentary in which a group of lively centenarians were interviewed in an effort to discover their long-living secrets. High on the list was their ability to cope with loss. I noted (with no surprise) that several were shown working in their gardens (perhaps giving truth to the line that old gardeners never die, they just go to seed). 

So much of our emotional wellbeing depends on our coping abilities. Whatever kind of loss, a loved one, a pet, a job, a home or a faculty (sight), we mourn and go through the grieving process. Nature has long been a part of that process and our rituals, from flowers to memorial gardens. But in the garden, nurturing living things, and fostering the continuity of life beyond ourselves, we find relief, as well as a deeper understanding of what Henry Mitchell calls “the great cycle of wheeling life.” 

Also high on the centenarians’ list were social interaction and exercise. Well, gardeners love to share plants, seeds, advice, experiences and zucchini. And every gardener can attest to gardening as a good workout. Even relatively light work such as weeding, trimming or raking burns about 300 calories an hour. Digging, hauling mulch, and heavier work not only burns calories but also improves muscle tone and bone strength. Added benefit comes from being outside in the sunshine (vitamin D helps the body absorb calcium). Researchers have found that regular exercise not only relieves depression but also improves cognitive abilities in middle-aged and older people. Gardening provides lots of opportunities to use it (or lose it)!

The garden allows us to indulge our senses, and sensory stimulation is vital to healthy human functioning. In fact, the sensory element is fundamental to the garden’s appeal: getting your hands in the soil, feeling the surprisingly velvety petal of a poppy or the roughness of tree bark; inhaling the sweet scent of nicotiana; tasting a fresh picked tomato; hearing the rustle of grasses and the chirps of arguing sparrows; and seeing the infinite range of colorrs in the heart of a tree peony. 

Beyond the physical benefits, the garden offers unlimited creative possibilities, and the chance to stimulate that sixth sense: the intellectual sense, there’s always something to learn, and with every lesson comes a greater understanding of nature’s ways, a deeper sense of satisfaction, and often a healthier garden (and gardener). We know now that maintaining good levels of physical and mental activity helps to ward off Alzheimer’s disease. And it is simply gratifying to nurture something, to tend something that responds so readily to our care. Who can fail to marvel at the ability of a tiny seed to sprout and grow and present us with lustrous blooms, tasty salad fixings, or a canopy of shade? 

Gardens can also give us a sense of control, important when we often feel that there are so many things beyond our control. We are not going to be able to control nature, but at least in our gardens, we can exercise some choice, deciding what to grow where and when. If we just keep working on the why, we’ll be laughing. As we realize that our health is closely bound up with the planet’s health, we will understand that in restoring the earth in our gardens, we also restore ourselves. 

Read more at Garden Forever- a wealth of gardening information, tips and resources
The Daffodil Principal- this inspiring story of one womans daffodil garden is one of the greatest principles of celebration: learning to move toward our goals and desires one step at a time.  
The best six doctors anywhere
And no one can deny it
Are sunshine, water, rest, and air
Exercise and diet.
These six will gladly you attend
If only you are willing
Your mind they'll ease
Your will they'll mend
And charge you not a shilling.

~Wayne Fields, What the River Knows
Container Gardens Make Perfect Gifts!
Black Eyed Susan Vine- a best seller!
Rose Glow Lantana- a best seller!
 Mixed Basket of Million Bells  (Calibrachoa)
 Star Sister Dahlia
Create meandering, flowing paths of rock and gravel amongst flowerbeds and the lawn
Coleus can't be beat for its bold color and easy care nature
Red is a hot color, use it in pots to create a bold punch of color that coordinates with patio furniture, fabrics, etc. as these geraniums do.
When creating flowerbeds, using a physical barrier such as these concrete edgers gives a tidy appearance and prevents grass from growing into the mulch. It will also protect the bark on trees from the weed eater.
Waxleaf Begonias are perfect for creating long swaths of color, giving maximum impact. Small patches of color can work in a seating area where you’re right on top of the plantings. Otherwise, large swaths of color have the most impact for long views. 
Learn more here about using color effectively in the garden.
Soften steps, concrete, etc. with flowing color that tumbles over the edge. Check out our Landscape Design Ideas page for more inspiration.
Plant for the pollinators! Lantana, Salvia, Zinnias, Butterfly Bush, and Hummingbird Bush all have nectar rich blooms that are irresistible. Plant them close to seating areas so you can enjoy the view. 
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Bonfire Begonia cascades over the side of a pot. A best seller!
Get creative! These geraniums are planted in a hollow log.
Lantana is great for pots- it doesn't require a lot of water and it attracts hummingbirds and butterflies.
Use perennials such as this purple Salvia in mixed pots of annuals.
Plant beds of annuals near the back porch or patio for maximum enjoyment.