Planting Instructions for Four O'Clock Flower Seeds

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Four O'Clock Planting and Care Guide

Quick Facts About Four O'Clock

Also called the Marvel of Peru, these bushy, highly fragrant plants originally came from South America. They are perennials, but they will grow as annuals in colder climate. They typically will bloom in the late afternoon and stay blooming all night. The blooms are trumpet shaped and very attractive to hummingbirds, bees and butterflies. The Flour O'Clock plants will produce tubers that can be wintered over if dug up and protected from cold temeratures.

Planting Time

Direct sow Four O'Clock seeds in containers, pots, or the garden in spring once frost danger has passed. Or, start the flower seeds indoors 6 - 8 weeks prior to the end of frost season.

Planting Location

Four O'Clock plants like a sunny position, and they perform well in partial shade too. They refer rich, moist, well-draining soil. Because they bloom in the late afternoon and evening, plant them in a place where they can be enjoyed during the later part of the day.

How to Plant Four O'Clock

  • Prior to planting Flour O'Clock seeds either indoors or outdoors, soak the seed overnight in water to help break down the outer coat
  • Start Four O'Clock seeds in trays filled with quality seed starter mix
  • Press the seeds into the soil and cover 1/4 inch
  • Keep the flower seeds continually moist and warm for germination
  • Once there are spouts, place the tray under grow lights for best growing results
  • Once temperatures warm outdoors, harden off the seedlings 7 - 10 days prior to transplanting out
  • Pinch back the main shoot when the transplant is young to promote a bushier growth and more flowering
  • Or, for direct sowing, weed and prepare a seedbed, working the soil 6 or more inches in depth
  • Add compost to improve soil quality
  • Firm the bed and plant the Four O'Clock seed every 12 inches
  • Cover the seeds with 1/4 inch of soil
  • Keep moist for germination
  • Pinch back seedling to promote better growth

Care And Maintenance

  • Water regularly for establishment and afterwards, do not allow the plants to dry out
  • Mulch around the base of the plants to help suppress weed growth and retain moisture
  • Give a balanced fertilizer throughout the growing season
  • In mid-season, if the plants begin to look ragged, trim the plant back by 1/3 to encourage new growth and more blooms
  • Four O'Clock plants can self-sow if allowed to go to seed in the fall
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Four O'Clock Mix

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Four O'Clock Marbles Red

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Four O'Clock Yellow

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Four O'Clock Marbles Yellow Red