Print This Page

Flowers for Fall Color and Pollination Newsletter



Zinnas with one of our bumblebee friends

Questions swirl at this time of the growing season about what plants are the best for attracting pollinators and other beneficial insects. Interest in attracting pollinators is high, especially for vegetable growers. When pollination is poor, your vegetables can and will shrivel on the vine. Variety of flowers is the key - lots of different colors, sizes of flowers and fragrances are important, but two especially good choices are almond verbena and white mistflower. They attract a wide variety of beneficial insects like big green magnets. Other plants that are needed for attracting bumble bees that are especially needed for helping cucumbers, squash and zucchini include marigolds and zinnias. And guess what? Right now in August is the perfect time to plant them for a late summer and fall show and to help with the fall vegetable garden and landscape crops as well.

Zinnias and marigolds actually do better when planted at this time of the year than in the spring. Getting them started now gives you beautiful, rich color from now till hard frost - and the disease and insect problems that hit early summer are rare. Plus, there will probably be more bumblebees. Next week’s newsletter will discuss our bumblebee friends in more detail.

Orange marigolds

Yellow marigolds

Shots showing some of the wide range colors and styles of zinnias:


Here are some other useful resources from

To discuss this newsletter or any other top

ic, tune in each Sunday 8am - 11am central time to the Dirt Doctor Radio Show. The call-in phone number is 1-866-444-3478. Listen on the internet or click here to find a station in your area.

Please share this newsletter with everyone in your address book and all your friends on Facebook and Twitter to help me spread the word on the proper way to select, plant and maintain plants.

Naturally yours,

Howard Garrett
The Dirt Doctor


  Search Library Topics      Search Newspaper Columns