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Add Quick Color with Annuals

Brought to you by Lowe's Creative Ideas

Annuals are a gardener's best friends, because they add vibrancy and color wherever and whenever you need it.

Here are four easy ways to add quick color to any garden with annuals.

Ground Level: Pick short, medium, and tall annuals and plant in bunches for the brightest effect. Plant in odd numbers such as three, five, and seven. Don't line them up  stagger them for a more natural look. Bright oranges and reds, like you'd find in marigolds and geraniums, are ideal because you can see their bright colors even from a distance.

Eye Level: Adding annuals at eye level gives your yard a multilayered effect. Plant window boxes or railing planters with trailing plants such as petunias, asparagus fern, and bacopa. Or add small pots of annual flowers to outdoor tables  they last longer than cut-flower bouquets.

Upward: Add color above your head with hanging baskets. Fill containers with cascading blooms such as Calibrachoa commonly called Million Bells  and petunias. These flowers come in a variety of colors and last from mid-spring to early autumn.

Vertically: Vertical gardens are a hot new trend and a great way to add color on every level. You can grow annual vines on a trellis. Or, if you want to stick with tried-and-true bedding annuals, try this budget-friendly idea:

Step 1: Hang an over-the-door plastic shoe rack on a sunny wall.

Step 2: Fill the pockets three quarters full with moisture-retaining compost or potting soil.

Step 3: Make a few small cuts in the bottom of each pocket to allow for drainage.

Step 4: Tuck in small bright annuals such as neon-blue lobelia, lacy sweet alyssum, or mini petunias in various colors. In a few weeks, you'll have a gorgeous blooming wall of color!