Care for snapdragons properly and enjoy their beautiful flowers for a long time
Snapdragons are so colorful and can be seen in gardens, on fences and on balconies all summer long. These versatile plants offer gardeners the opportunity to add color and aesthetics to any flower bed and to attract bees, butterflies and other pollinators to the garden throughout the growing season. You can also use snapdragons to border your flower beds or create great colorful accents in flower pots around the patio. The snapdragon gets its nickname from the shape of its flowers. At the peak of the flowering cycle, the buds resemble a lion’s snout. Snapdragons have lanceolate leaves that spiral around the inflorescence and stem of the plant. Her botanical name is Antirrhinum majus. It means something like “like a mouth”. Even during the day, the flowers create an opening and closing movement that gives the impression of a lion’s jaws snapping. When they look at pollinators, such as bees, who are busy with the flowers, they open them up and sometimes climb inside, with the flower swallowing them.
Snapdragons – the permanent bloomers are back!
Snapdragons like to bloom in cooler weather and come in a variety of rich colors that add a spectacular visual effect to the garden. This unique flower starts blooming at the bottom of the flower spike and migrates towards the top during a few weeks of bloom. Usually, snapdragons slow flowering during the summer season.
However, if you give them enough water, they will bloom well into the fall.
General care tips for snapdragons
Your snapdragons do well in well-draining soil that is rich in nutrients. We recommend planting them in direct sunlight, but they will also grow and bloom in partially shaded flower beds. If you want to grow thick and bushy plants, we recommend pinching the flower spike before flowering begins. After the flowers have finished blooming, pinching off the flower tips will encourage new growth and you’ll get a second bloom before the end of fall.
Don’t expect your snapdragons to survive the winter. They do better than yearlings. Even if they survive the winter, they likely won’t return the following season with the same robust growth and flowering. It’s a good idea to pull them out and start over with new seeds or seedlings. Your snapdragons form seed pods during the growing season and may drop seeds onto the flower beds. If you’re lucky, these self-sowing seeds may bloom and create a new bed of snapdragons the following summer.
Plant flowers of different colors to add even more color to the feast for the eyes
lighting conditions and location
Plant your snapdragons in well-lit flower beds for the best flowering results. However, snapdragons also thrive in partially sunny spots around the garden. They need between six and eight hours of direct sunlight during the growing season to gain the strength to bloom.
Make sure you water the plants during the summer season and don’t let the roots dry out between watering. If you take good care of the plant, it will reward you with a second flowering season towards the end of summer and even mid-autumn. Depending on your geographic location, your snapdragons may bloom well into winter.
In a delicate pink, the flowers look even more magical
The optimal ground conditions
Your snapdragons will do best in soil with a pH between 6.2 and 7.0. The plants like to grow in nutrient-rich soil with good drainage around the roots. If the soil doesn’t drain well, you run the risk of the plant developing root rot. Adding some mulch and some manure during the growing season is more than enough to help your snapdragons reach their potential.
With a little attention and care you will be gifted with such magnificent blooms
Water and fertilize snapdragons properly
Snapdragons need plenty of water to thrive. They are thirsty plants and you should make sure you keep the soil moist at all times. Allowing the soil to dry out between waterings is a mistake and could delay or limit the plant’s ability to flower. Make sure you water around the base of the plant and avoid wetting the crown to prevent rot from occurring and killing the snapdragon. To check if your flowers need water, stick your finger in the soil. If the soil on your finger feels dry after an inch, it’s time to grab the garden hose for a watering session.
In flower pots, the magnificent flower beauties may need even more water
Snapdragons don’t need a lot of fertilizer to thrive. If you live in warmer climates, adding some diluted liquid fertilizer will minimize the risk of the plant developing nitrogen burns. It also provides the roots with the nutrients they need to thrive.
Grow snapdragons from seeds
If you want to get your snapdragons off to the quickest start, we recommend starting sowing them indoors about 6 weeks before planting them in the flower bed. Some gardeners can start seeds up to 12 weeks before placing them in flower beds. To sow your seeds indoors you can use a general potting soil mix and press the seeds into the soil. Water the soil lightly with a spray bottle and place the seedling tray in bright light for 16 hours a day.
After the seedlings have developed their fifth to sixth set of leaves, they can be moved to the garden. After giving the plant a few days to establish itself in the soil, you can pinch off the top of the plant to encourage it to grow outward. Such plants can withstand even light frosts.
In the fall, collect the seeds from the dry pods of the plant
Common pests and diseases
Snapdragons are hardy plants and resistant to most diseases and pests. However, there are a few that you should pay particular attention to. The most important disease is the rust fungus. This pathogen can overwinter in the soil and affect the growth and flowering of snapdragons the next year. Therefore, you must remove the soil or use a fungicide to kill the disease. Otherwise it will kill the snapdragons and spread to other plants in the flower bed.
Snapdragons are also susceptible to molds, such as powdery mildew, fungal leaf spot, downy mildew, root rot and wilt are common. Most mold problems occur in flower beds that don’t get enough sunlight or airflow around the flowers. Spider mites and aphids are also a concern for gardeners, but it’s easy to control these pests with a natural product like neem oil. Spray the plants when you notice any signs of the pests and they should go away in a day or two.
Healthy plants radiate joie de vivre!
Let these beautiful flowers bloom in your garden or on balconies and terraces. In this way you not only make yourself happy, but also bees and butterflies. We wish you a wonderful summer!
Combined with verbena, snapdragons feel particularly comfortable
In late summer, zinnias and chrysanthemums are the perfect companions
But even just in their own company, these remarkable flowers look simply stunning