Country charmers

Rambling over the ground or spilling from containers, nasturtiums are carefree creepers with a range of flower colors

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Amazon Jewel

  • Country charmers

For rambling

Climbing types reach 6 feet tall and can gracefully twine up fences and arbors, or ramble over the ground.

'AMAZON JEWEL'. Spurred blossoms come in shades of pumpkin, peachy rose, gold, ruby, and pale lemon. Variegated foliage softly marbled in green and cream.

GLORIOUS GLEAM MIX. Lots of large, often fragrant, single and semidouble spurred flowers in shades of yellow, gold-orange, and scarlet.

'MOONLIGHT'. Soft primrose yellow flowers and bright green leaves.

PLANTING AND CARE

Plant nasturtiums in spring in mild-winter areas (fall in the low and intermediate deserts). If a freeze is predicted, cover seedlings with row covers. In cold-winter regions, wait until weather warms to plant.

Plant from cell-packs, 4-inch pots, or seed, in a sunny spot (with afternoon shade inland) with well-drained soil. Set plants about 10 inches apart.

Sow seeds 1/2 to 1 inch deep; keep soil moist until seeds emerge. Thin to 12 to 18 inches apart (half that distance in containers).

Once established, plants do best with only moderate watering. Too much water and fertilizer prompts luxuriant foliage but fewer flowers.

SOURCES

Plants and seeds of many varieties, including Dwarf Jewel Mix, are widely sold in nurseries. Also try the following mail-order and on-line sources.

Cook's Garden, Box 5010, Hodges, SC 29653; (800) 457-9703 or www.cooksgarden.com. Eight varieties, including Glorious Gleam Mix and 'Peach Melba'.

Nichols Garden Nursery, Albany, OR; (541) 928-9280 or www.nicholsgardennursery.com. Nine varieties, including Alaska Mixed, 'Empress of India', and 'Moonlight'.

Park Seed Company, Greenwood, SC; (800) 845-3369 or www.parkseed.com. Six varieties, including 'Alaska', 'Empress of India', 'Moonlight', and Whirlybird.

Renee's Garden, (888) 880-7228 or www.reneesgarden.com for a source near you. Six varieties, including 'Copper Sunset' and 'Vanilla Berry'.

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