Petunias used to be available in only a few colours, the ubiquitous red, white, hot pink and all kinds of blues and purples. Now we have way more choice in this very useful annual flower. Before I go any further, let me say that I am no flower snob and love all kinds of everyday annuals, including petunias. Some may sneer at common annual flowers, just because they have tended to be overused, but not me. A flower is a flower, and petunias are lovely in the right place. For one thing, the scent of many varieties (whites and purples, and most of the supertunias) makes them worth it alone. My soft spot for petunias began when I was a beginning gardener. I bought all kinds of plants to grow in a shady garden, and the petunias were the only ones that lived. For this novice, those sturdy petunias made me a fan for life.
While I will always grow white and purple petunias in mixed containers for their scent alone, (especially at night) and red petunias for their hummingbird-magnet potential, it’s exciting to discover the newer varieties.
One that’s really bowled me over this summer is Proven Winners Pretty Much Picasso, (above) a combination hot pink and green flower that is stunning, and flowers like a maniac. A new colour now available in petunias is a soft yellow, which is a great colour for tying other colours together.