Easy to Grow, Direct Sow Summer Annual Flowers – Ornamental Gardening

Hi Lovelies!

It’s that time of the year, again! I’m over-the-moon, insanely excited to start growing things again – but it’s not quite the time, yet! Anywho, since I literally haven’t been able to think about anything but growing and planting flowers; I thought I would go ahead and answer a common question that seems to pop-up pretty frequently. That question, of course, is: “What are some good flowers to grow for someone who’s never grown any before?”

Even though I’ve been growing flowers for awhile now, I still can’t help but want to classify myself as a “beginner” gardener. I have learned so much through the process of trial and error, with lots and lots of emphasis on the word “error.” Though the last thing I would ever do would consider myself an expert (about anything, lol), I have learned quite a bit from the school of “this garden is a total disaster. Do you even have any clue what you’re doing?!”

Below, I’ve picked my absolute favorite garden plants for beginner gardeners who are completely new growing flowers. The reason that I decided on these flowers is that, for the most part, they are very forgiving. As always, it’s important to keep in mind that every garden is different. What’s easy for me, may not be easy for you – and vice versa. These suggestions are based on my own personal experiences. Please feel free to add your own experiences in the comments section! Hope you’re having a really great day! 🙂

Many ornamental flowers and cut flowers are TOXIC. ALWAYS do your own research and take responsibility for the plants that you introduce around your kids, pets, and everyone else. Use common sense when handling plant materials: wear gloves, always wash hands, avoid contact with face, etc. NEVER consume any plant which you have not positively identified with complete certainty to be safe and edible. Before planting anything, research to determine whether specific flowers are considered invasive where you live or if there are laws that apply to their planting in your area.

Scarlet Runner Beans – I love scarlet runner beans for many reasons. Most notably, their profusion of gorgeous red blooms. Though these runner beans aren’t the greatest for cut flowers, they’re generally carefree and easy to grow – provided they are given an adequate trellis to climb! Direct sow the seeds after all chance of frost.


Sunflowers – I can’t make a list of easy to grow annual flowers, without including sunflowers. Before I started gardening, sunflowers were one of the very few flowers that I even knew the name of and could identify. I know that some people really dislike growing sunflowers, but for me, I would never want to have a garden without them. Simply direct sow after the threat of frost is gone.

Amaranth – Amaranth is another one of my all-time favorite plants. Upon first glace, it may not seem very exciting. However, it’s dual -purpose makes me want to happy dance through the garden. There are a few different types of amaranth – some better used for greens and some better used for grains. Both foliage and grain types of amaranths can also be used as cut flowers. The seeds are easy to direct sow after the danger of frost and often reseed themselves freely. In fact, I still have volunteers coming up from the variety that I planted 5 years ago. I always let my volunteers go to seed, and they seem to take care of themselves quite well. Amaranths don’t seem to like being transplanted, so the scattered look of direct seeded plants is perfectly okay with me.


Nasturtiums – Nasturtiums are another one of my favorite dual-purpose garden plants. Not only are they beautiful, they’re insanely easy to grow (direct sowing after frost, noticing a pattern?). Many people choose to include nasturtiums in their veggie gardens, but its foliage can also add a nice creative touch to flower arrangements.

Zinnias – I think zinnias may be my favorite flowers. After all, a package of zinnia seeds is what started it all – this flower madness. Zinnias are perfect for a beginner gardener with warm summer temperatures. Though those who live in milder climates may not have the same luck with these flowers. Zinnias thrive in my summer heat, and often reach over 6 feet tall from direct sowing after the threat of frost is gone.


Balsam – While balsam may not be as popular as zinnias, in my garden, they have proven themselves to be just as easy to grow. I simply direct sow after the chance of frost is gone. Since balsam is in the impatiens family, I usually direct sow these flowers in part shade. However,  I have seen conflicting info online that would indicate that they may prefer a full-sun location. They seem to do really well in the hot summer weather and are usually pretty carefree.

Hyacinth Vine, Mina Lobata Vine, and Morning Glory – Annual vines are a great way to add visual interest into your garden. I use beautiful climbing vines such as these to cover my ugly privacy fence, and of course, try to block out my curious (and obnoxious) neighbors. All three of these vines are easily direct sown into the garden after the danger frost has passed. Make sure to provide a strong trellis, as some of these plants can get surprisingly heavy!

For more examples of summer annuals that are super easy to grow from seed, you may want to check out my latest YouTube video below!

Also, there’s a new podcast today on SoundCloud! Be sure to check it out!

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What is “@freshcutky“?

@freshcutky documents the pursuit of my goal of one day owning my own cut flower farm. Along the way, you’ll will see random projects, cooking, and of course – growing stuff. I’m not an expert, and would never claim to be. There’s always more to learn – this is my journey. The purpose of my blog, and other social media accounts (including YouTube) is to share ideas. I do my best to offer information that is useful, but reliance on that information is strictly at your own risk and NOT a substitute for professional advice of any kind. I do not create sponsored content or use affiliate links unless they have been explicitly discussed.



6 thoughts on “Easy to Grow, Direct Sow Summer Annual Flowers – Ornamental Gardening

  1. Out of all of those I only grow nasturtiums, they self seed every year so now they just arrive. I planted them initially because I really like the peppery taste of the leaves, added to salads or whatever. The flowers look very pretty in a salad too, but have a different taste. Far easier to grow than lettuce, and you have effortless greens the whole warm season. If you like peppery…

    1. There will be a video up shortly, but uploading is taking what seems like fooorrreeeevvveerrrr. Lol! Hope you’re having a great day! 🙂

  2. I love zinnias! They’re so cheerful and bright. Sunflowers, too — I love watching the birds enjoy the seeds. Another easy flower to grow is marigolds. I used to think they were ugly, but have recently been really pleased with the way they fill out and brighten a space.

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