Flower Farming

Johnny's Top-10 Flowers for Direct Seeding

Easy-to-grow cut flowers to start from seeds sown directly into your garden soil

Need a quick answer to the question, Which flowers can I sow right in my bed row or garden bed?   

Maybe you do not have the room, the equipment, or the time to start some flowers indoors. Maybe you just want to grow flowers that are suited to direct-sowing anyway. Or maybe you want to sow a lot of flowers, quickly and on a frequent basis. For whatever reason you need to know, here are our top-10 recommendations for direct-seeding — 5 you can get in the ground when it's cool, and 5 for warmer seasons. (Plus 1 you can start in either.)

They are all easy to grow, but if you'd like more than just a list (much more!), dig in to the information below the charts. To help you succeed, we offer learning materials for every one of our crops.


5 easy-to-grow, warm-season annuals that can be succession-planted multiples times, a few weeks apart, providing lots of blooms to cut all season.


5 Easy-to-grow, cool-season annuals that love cool soil for germination and should only be seeded in the early spring or in the fall (where overwintering is possible), for best results.

+ 1: Calendula

Calendula also bears mention, but it can be sown anytime — it doesn't necessarily require cool or warm temperatures for germination. It will pop up faster under warmer germination temperatures but grows very well in cooler weather. Plus, it is easy to grow, adaptable, and one of the fastest-growing flowers in this list, reaching a harvestable stage at an average of 50–55 days from sowing date.



Visit the library for each of these crops, where you will find their Key Growing Information — fundamentals on germination temperature range, seeding rates and seeding depths, harvest recommendations, and other cultural basics. Key Growing Information is equivalent to what you may find in our catalog or on our seed packet backs. Each library also contains more in-depth materials, such as videos, charts, tech sheets providing detailed guidance on crop production, articles, and other educational resources.


If you're just getting started or interested in learning more about direct seeding, we cover this method with video tutorials, charts, and guides in our Direct Seeding Library.

About Precision-Seeding Flowers

Direct-sown sunflowers at Garden Bee Flower Farm,
A lot of sunflowers are getting ready to bloom!… 
— Paula Fischer, Garden Bee Flower Farm, Walnut Cove, North Carolina

Paula direct-seeded 1000 sunflowers a week, every week for 25 weeks in 2017. Here's a snapshot of her planting in late June.

Some flowers can be direct-sown more efficiently with a precision seeder than by hand. Curious to know which ones? We certainly were, so we designed a series of trials at our Research Farm, which we repeat from time to time to make sure our findings are valid and consistent.

A seed's size, shape, and texture greatly influence its suitability for sowing with a seeder. These characteristics vary widely between crops, varieties, and even sometimes individual seed lots.

Each seeder design, too, has its strengths and limitations — and for direct-seeding flower crops, we prefer the Jang JP Seeder. (See our Guide to Choosing a Seeder to learn what to look for.)

The different Jang JP rollers are drilled to accommodate different seed sizes and shapes. We designed the trial to evaluate which seed varieties fit which Jang JP roller combinations and which ones do not. Specifically, the trial showed that 8 out of the 11 flower crops listed here can be direct-sown with a Jang JP Seeder: Ammi, bells of Ireland, bupleurum, Centaurea, Daucus, larkspur, Nigella, and sunflowers.

From the data we created a set of reference charts you can use when planning your seasonal production schedule. (The charts cover not just these flowers but others as well as farm seed, herbs, and vegetables). As you draw up your plan, refer to the charts as a starting point for the combinations that deliver a smooth result and those that do not. Then, when you go to put them to the test, take note of any small adjustments we suggest to the seeder settings and components.

Whether you go mechanical or not, be sure to factor in some time to learn the ropes and run a few trials before you scale up. If you're planning to take a methodological approach, see our Jang Roller Selection Guide for guidance on trialing different types of seeds in the different Jang rollers. The goal is to find what works well and build upon that, so remember to take notes.

We hope you achieve abundant success with direct-sowing these flower crops. We're here if you need more information, so give it a try!