Annuals that can withstand cooler temps

booberry85(5)April 22, 2008

I wanted to some of my seedlings outside, but the night time temps are in the low 40's. I was thinking I might be able to put out pansies and maybe petunias. Are there other annuals that can withstand day time temps in the 60's and night time temps in the 40's?

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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Rather than dealing with the present temperatures, what is the date of your last expected frost? If you don't know that, your local extension office will. So many of us are 'fooled' by warm spring temps, when a frost or two is still around the corner.

BUT! To answer your question, almost any annual will do fine in temperatures of 40 and above. Is there any one in particular that you are especially worried about?

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 12:37PM
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donnabaskets(Zone 8a, Central MS)

Rhizo is correct. There are, however, annuals that will survive and even thrive with light frost or a light freeze:
Nasturtiums (cover if frost or freeze is predicted), Larkspur, pansies, violas, flowering kale, snapdragons, lobelia (cover if frost or light freeze is predicted), Wallflower are some.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 4:50PM
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triple_b(BC 5b)

definitely snaps. we had snow on Saturday and they sat there happy as anything, looking like someone had just given them a nice drink. The next night was hard frost, mid 20's so I covered them. They are fine. I just checked them today and gave them another drink. It is still about 10degrees cooler than it should be for this time of year and the wind is cool and drying but they seem to laugh in its face. I have just gained a new admiration for snaps.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2008 at 6:10PM
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I've have quite a few annuals & perennials started. I noticed aphids so I stuck them outside and sprayed them with the hose. I'm nervous because next week the low is suppose to dip down to 37 degrees F. Right now I have balsam impatiens, amaranth, bachelor buttons, calendula, cosmos, four o' clocks, marigolds, nasturtiums, petunias, salvia and sweet william all started.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 11:45AM
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rhizo_1 (North AL) zone 7

Another cold weather favorite is sweet alyssum. Marigolds are pretty darn hardy, too, and seem able to withstand frosts just fine.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 12:08PM
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albert_135(Sunset 2 or 3)

We frequently have temperatures plunge to below freezing for perhaps an hour just before sunrise then by afternoon it gets quite warm often 70s or above.

Calendula reseed themselves here, come up among the first during the warm days and withstand the brief freezing quite well. Marigolds do their thing a bit later and seem more sensitive to the cold on the tiny seedlings. In the fall the larger marigold plants seem to hold up through the early frosts, perhaps better than the calendula.

Hollyhock, not technically an annual but close, rather thrives during the spring frosts.

    Bookmark   April 23, 2008 at 1:05PM
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triple_b(BC 5b)

Marigolds are pretty darn hardy, too, and seem able to withstand frosts just fine.

* * *

really? I went to Wal Mart a few weeks ago after a surprise hard frost and their marigolds were all brown limp mush. Or maybe they were NOT marigolds but were so dead I couldn't tell. They LOOKED like marigolds.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 1:22PM
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Add CA poppies to the list. These were seeded last fall and survived winter temps into the teens. Photo from this morning ...

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 5:12PM
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After having temperatures in the 70's and 80's all week, they are predicting *snow* next week. :-( BIG POUT! I've been trying to harden off some seedlings and it looks like I'll just be bringing them inside again.

*snow* is a four letter word!!!!

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 7:11PM
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triple_b(BC 5b)

yes we had a beautiful weekend two weeks ago, near 70. then last weekend it snowed. (looks like it is marching east). It is supposed to be nice again this weekend. What will next weeekend bring in this crazy roller coaster spring weather?

oh and thanks for giving the nod to alyssum. I will transplant mine into my rose pots later.

    Bookmark   April 25, 2008 at 7:22PM
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Central_Cali369(Sunset Z9, Fresno, CA)

Most of my "annuals" turn out to be perennials and they aren't bothered at all by our two "winter" months. Our average temps for these two months are 30s for lows and 50s for highs. These are the annuals that aren't bothered by low 30s nor light frosts and are perennials for me:

Pansy (these die from heat in the summer)
Wax Begonia
Osteospermum (this one actually blooms year round)
Pelargonium (zonal geranium)

The list goes on. Basically, 40 degrees F will not harm anything. Even Coconut palms can withstand 40F. The danger would be if you experience a late freeze, then some of the tender new growth can get burned. Here are two clumps of petunia that are going on their second year. They even had some sporadic blooms throughout December and January when we had 30s for lows. This photo is from last weekend.

    Bookmark   April 26, 2008 at 7:50PM
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