In Texas often the winters are so mild that petunias volunteer the next year. This means a hardy root structure exists and the petunias will return large and strong. These petunias are in their third and fifth year of volunteering. This means they made it through the winter of 2010, which was a much harder winter than 2011.

This is why petunias are a good choice, other than the fact that once the nights reach 85 to 90 degrees, the petunias and geraniums stop blooming. So … that’s not good. However, these are lovely, lovely until the July 4 and they will resume blooming in October.  Deep purple looks wonderful in the late fall and works well with the Encore azaleas.   The Encores rally in the fall with a light crop of blooms.  Nothing spectacular and hardly worth the effort but there you have it.  Nurseries love to sell them!  I would rather see mums in the fall than a weak repeat of azaleas.