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How to Grow Four O'Clock

Annual, Mirabilis Jalapa

Everyone describes attractive, Four O'Clocks as "Old-Time" or "Old-Fashioned" favorites. Well, these easy to grow annuals are a favorite in today's home garden, too. Four O'Clocks are tropical plants, native to North and South America.

The bright, trumpet shaped flowers open in mid afternoon, hence the name " Four O'Clocks". Flowers stay open overnight, and close in early morning. They will also remain open on cloudy days. Colors include white, red, pink, yellow, and some two-toned blooms.

The bushy plants grow quickly to 2-4 feet. They make attractive hedgerows or borders. Place these plants in areas of evening traffic, so passersby can see the open flowers and enjoy their nighttime fragrance.

Propagation:

Grow Four O'Clock from seeds. The large seeds are easy to handle, and germinate quickly in 7-14 days. Directly sow Four O'Clock seeds into the garden after the last frost in your area. Cover seeds with 1/4" of soil. Space plants 12 inches apart, and thin to two feet apart.

Four O'Clocks can also be propagated by it's tubers. After the plant has died in the fall, dig up tubers. Brush off excess soil. Store the tubers in a dark area, in damp peat moss or sand.

How to Grow Four O'Clock Plants:

Grow Four O'Clock in full sun. They prefer rich, well composted soil.

Keep soil moist. Water regularly, especially in dry weather.

Four O'Clock are heavy feeders. Add a general purpose fertilizer once a month to encourage vigorous growth, and big, bright blooms.

Insect and Disease:

Insect and disease problems are infrequent. Apply insecticides or fungicide only as needed.

More Information:

Four O'Clock Plants - You and your plants will be right at home at the Gardener's Network





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