Facebook LinkedIn Email Pinterest Twitter Instagram YouTube Icon Navigation Search Icon Main Search Icon Video Play Icon Audio Play Icon Headphones Icon Plus Icon Minus Icon Check Icon Print Icon Note Icon Heart Icon Filled Heart Icon Single Arrow Icon Double Arrow Icon Hamburger Icon TV Icon Close Icon Sorted Hamburger/Search Icon

This member-only article is part of our All Access subscription.

Member only
Northern California Regional Reports

Spectacular Self-Sowing Annuals for Northern California

These lesser-known flowers will pop up in your garden for years to come

Contrasting shades of bright orange and muted purple make ‘Solar Fire’ ursinia an eye-catching standout. Photo: courtesy of Annie’s Annuals and Perennials

Annual flowering plants grow vigorously and bloom profusely during their growing season. They fill in the gaps between your perennials, adding color, texture, and lush beauty. They may also provide frequent armloads of blooms for indoor displays. Many old-fashioned favorites can enthusiastically self-seed, volunteering new growth season after season, creating colorful bloom flushes and a natural, informal appearance in your garden. Without any assistance from the usually delighted gardener, seedlings of these self-sowers often appear in surprising locations, providing drama, excitement, and sometimes new and fabulous, never-before-considered plant combinations. Some of these classic favorites include:

  • Borage (Borago officinalis, annual)
  • Poppies (Papaver rhoeas, annual)
  • Love-in-a-mist (Nigella damascena, annual)
  • Nasturtiums (Tropaeolum and cvs.,annual)
  • Four o’clocks (Mirabilis jalapa, Zones 9–11)
  • Sweet peas (Lathyrus odoratus, annual)
  • Sunflowers (Helianthus annuus, annual)

This article is only available to All Access members

This article is available online for the first time ever exclusively for All Access members. Sign up for a free trial to access our entire collection of articles, videos, and plant records.

Start Free Trial

View Comments


Log in or become a member to post a comment on this article.

Related Articles

The Latest

Magazine Cover

Take your passion for plants to the next level

Subscribe today and save up to 44%

"As a recently identified gardening nut I have tried all the magazines and this one is head and shoulders above the pack."


View All