Petunia

Petunia x hybrida

(Solanaceae – Nightshade Family)

Petunias are small annuals that die with a few hard freezes. They are native to South America. They are one of the most popular potted plants in the USA. The name is derived from Petun, the Brazilian name for tobacco, to which it is closely related. Also related are cape gooseberries, tomatoes, deadly nightshades, potatoes and chili peppers; which are also in the family Solanaceae (Wikipedia).

We have a good selection of colors in our Petunias and they bloom until the frost. This is a close-up of one of the prettiest in our beds:

Bi-color PetuniaHere are some others. The Blue Petunia is especially pretty.

For more information about this and other Petunias, visit the Ohio State University website. Here is a sample of the information about Petunia that is found there:

  • prolifically flowering from early June until the first frost, but with a reduction in flowering intensity in mid-Summer in warmer climates, and a dramatic drop in flower production after the first frost
  • flower consists of a trumpet-shaped fused corolla that flares widely at its open end, with a slightly undulating margin and mild sweet fragrance
  • shades of purple, magenta, red, pink, violet, blue, yellow, or white are the most common solid colors
  • bicolor combinations usually have white and another color, in either a striped wheel-spoke pattern, or having a central “eye” of white or a faded shade of the primary color
  • several flowering forms exist, encompassing the traits of single- or double-flowering, frilled edges, abundant small flowers, or fewer large flowers
  • heavy rain ruins the expanded flowers of most cultivars, requiring a couple of days for the floral spectacle to return to full beauty

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