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Snapdragons 101

Snapdragons are one of the most popular cut-flowers. They come in a range of beautiful colors and who can't resist their fluffy blooms, not to mention how prolific they are.



Starting from Seed

Snapdragon seeds are one of the tiniest seeds, they are pretty much the size of dust. However, they are fairly easy to start. Snapdragons do best if started indoors 8-10 weeks before the last frost. They do not do good if they are direct seeded. When planting, we like to wet the end of a toothpick and place seeds right on the surface of the soil. We do not cover the seeds as they need light to germinate. We like to give them a good mist and then place a humidity dome overtop, to keep the soil from drying out (this can easily be done with plastic wrap). Sprouts will start to emerge after about 1 week, once they do we remove the humidity dome, and to water we bottom water as to not disturb the seedlings.



Planting

Once the seedlings have 2-3 sets of true leaves, we like to pinch the main stem out. This will encourage the plant to branch, which will end up giving you way more flowers. This will slow down the blooms by a couple weeks, but it is definitely worth it. Snapdragons love cool weather, however there are certain kinds that love the summer too. (Potomac and Rocket varieties like the summer and will survive the heat, while Legend, Chantilly, and Costa varieties love the cold weather and will only thrive during the early spring, or late fall). However, regardless their variety, planting out your snapdragons a couple of weeks before your last frost will give them a good head-start.


Spacing

When spacing your plants we recommend 4-10 inches apart, or 6-10 inches if you are pinching.



Staking:

Snapdragons can easily fall over with their long stems so we recommend supporting them as they grow. To do this we like to use netting over the rows about 12 inches high, held tight by T-posts. This will give you nice straight steps when harvesting the flowers.



Harvesting:

The perfect time to harvest snapdragons is when the lower 1/3 to 1/2 of the florets are open on the spike. This will give you the longest vase life for the flower. When cutting the flower, cut deep into the plant to encourage more branching throughout the season. Vase life of a snapdragon is about 5 to 6 days.



Snapdragons are a staple here on the farm, and we enjoy them so much! I hope you come to love them as much as we do! Happy growing!



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