Being ornamental flowering plants, most people plant petunias in hanging baskets or flower pots so that they can showcase these pretty flowers inside their homes.
However, some of you might want to grow petunias in your garden as well to ornament the landscape of the garden, thus, whether petunias can grow well in the ground or not might be a query of yours.
Thus, keep reading ahead to find the answer to your questions.
Can Petunias Grow In The Ground?
Petunias being versatile ornamental flowering plants, they are absolutely ideal and can easily be grown in the ground. Thus, regardless of the old-fashioned, fancier ones, or the new varieties of petunias, almost all petunias can grow and thrive well in the ground even if they are mass planted.
Petunias make some of the adaptable decorative flowering plants that not only are ideal to be grown in hanging baskets or flowering pots but also can be grown and thrive well in the ground.
However, there are some conditions that must be fulfilled while growing petunias in the ground, as petunias will never grow in the ground if the petunia seeds are tossed or the plant is planted anywhere in the ground.
The conditions include a site on the ground where petunias will be getting at least 6-8 hours of direct bright sunlight to thrive in their best condition. The soil should be fertile enough, should have a well-draining system, and the soil should be a little acidic.
Also, fertilizer should be mixed in that spot in the ground before growing petunias in the ground. Only if all these conditions are well met, petunias can surely be grown and thrive fully in the ground.
Also, remember one thing that some petunias varieties naturally do better while growing in containers, so they might not grow well in the ground.
But all other petunia varieties, regardless of the old-fashioned, newest varieties, and the fancy ones, will grow quite well in the ground, even when they are mass planted.
Do Petunias Grow Better In The Ground, Pot, Or In Hanging Baskets?
As petunias can grow in the ground, flower pots, or in hanging baskets as per people’s preferences and petunia varieties, wanting to know where these ornamental flowering plants grow the best is common. Below it has been explained with proper reasons.
Petunias make outstanding bedding flowering plants which clearly indicates that most petunia varieties will grow just fine if they are planted and being grown in the ground.
Multiflora petunias, wave petunias, and Grandiflora petunias are some of the petunias that can withstand the obstacle they may face in the ground and grow well.
Petunias are decorative flowers, thus, naturally they do much better while they are being grown in pots, rather than in flower beds in the garden. Also, some of these petunias are prone to rain damage, so they better grow in pots.
Grandiflora, petunia wave carmine velour, petunia shock wave coconut, etc. grows well in pots.
Petunias do best when they are grown in hanging baskets as they are least prone to rain damage and other obstacles they might face while being grown in pots or grounds. Besides, there are trailing petunias that only grow the best in hanging baskets.
Cascadia petunias, surfinia petunias, and calibrachoa petunias are some of them.
How To Plant Petunias In The Ground?
If you are wishing for these vigorous flower producers to bloom vibrantly with colorful flowers throughout the thriving season in the ground, here are the steps for planting petunias in the right way in your ground.
Purchase Petunia Plant:
Purchasing young petunia plants from any nursery is the easiest option while planting petunias in the garden. You must buy only the upright varieties of petunias that are meant for planting in the garden.
Also, choose the short, compact, and not blooming young petunia plants only so that they can settle down faster.
And in case you are about to plant your own petunia seedlings grown from the seeds indoors, plant them in the garden after the threat of frost has gone.
Plant After The Frost Has Passed:
Whether it’s your bought young petunia plants or seedlings grown from petunia seeds, know that neither of them can withstand frost. So you are strongly recommended to plant petunias in the garden from earlier in May to June when there is no frost at all.
Select The Right Spot:
Selecting the right spot is a must as petunias will not survive in any spot. The perfect spot for petunias is a spot where sunshine directly and brightly falls so that petunias get full sun during the daytime.
Prepare The Soil:
Petunias require fertile and light-textured soil which has a good drainage system to grow well in the garden. Also, the soil has to be slightly acidic with a pH level ranging between pH 6.0 and pH 7.0.
And you can prepare such acidity and richness in your garden soil by mixing compost, organic materials, or soil conditioner in the soil.
Plant The Petunias:
Dig a big enough hole for placing the root ball easily and fork in a layer of compost to the hole’s base. Then place the young rootball in that hole and make sure it’s planted at a similar size to the original place/pot.
Level out the top roots with soil surface, and mix extra compost with excavated soil, then fill the hole fully. You should plant these upright petunias 15-20 cm apart from each other.
How Fast Do Petunias Spread In The Ground?
Since people tend to grow petunias in the ground by transplanting young petunia plants bought from the nurseries, thus, these young petunia plants will take around 6 to 8 weeks approximately to spread and start blooming in the ground beds.
Even the petunia seedlings grown from seeds will take 6-8 weeks to spread in the ground as well.
What Soil Do Petunias Grow Best In?
Petunias grow the best in sandy and light-textured soil, but not all sandy, light soil is appropriate for petunias to grow. It’s because apart from being sandy, light soil, the soil has to be very fertile as well as well-drained.
Also, the soil must be slightly acidic by having a pH level of pH 6.0- pH 7.0. If all these conditions are fulfilled by a sandy and light-textured soil, then it’s the ideal soil for petunias to grow in their best condition.
How To Take Care Of Petunias In The Ground?
Proper caring is all that petunias need after being planted in the ground. Thus, effective tips are added below to guide you while taking care of your petunias in the ground.
Provide Enough Sunlight:
Make sure that your petunias are getting direct and bright sunlight for at least 6 hours per day. But don’t keep them under the scorching sun for a long time.
Also, depending on the species, some petunia may do well in partial shade in the ground.
Petunias’ shallow root system requires frequent watering as the roots dry out fast. So you must keep watering the plant frequently, especially in the summer so that the soil stays moist, but not watery at all.
Also, don’t overwater the petunias as it will cause rotten roots and the demise of the plant.
Petunias require occasional application of fertilizer throughout the growing season in summer to continue producing abundant flowers. Every 10-14 days, apply a high in potash liquid fertilizer, or you can apply a slow-release fertilizer as well instead of liquid fertilizer.
A form of pruning is called beheading which means the removal of passed flower heads by clipping or pinching to motivate new growth. Some petunias may not require regular removal of passed flowers but some may need such as Grandiflora, Multiflora.
Aphids are the prime enemy of petunias, also thrips, budworms, powdery mildew, mites, and caterpillars can bother petunias. You have to control these pests/insect outbreaks by treating the plant, removing the leaves, and by attempting other chemical-free ways.
Can You Leave Petunias In The Ground Over Winter?
You absolutely can’t leave petunias in the ground during the winter season because petunias can’t withstand the harshness of cold at all, especially during the frosting time. Cold and frost will bring early demise to these flowering plants.
So if you want to keep your petunias alive for the next year, you must dig the plants up from the ground and overwinter them as dormant plants in a place such as your basement or garage till spring comes and the danger of frost is gone.
Petunias certainly can grow and thrive in the ground as well as they thrive in pots or hanging baskets because petunias are very much adaptable flowering plants that can adjust and grow in any growing condition. So, most of the old or new varieties, or fancy petunia varieties can grow in the ground.