If you are trying to choose a variety of Petunia for your flower bed or garden, you certainly have many different options. Today's petunias offer single or double blooms, solid, strike or veined colors, ruffled or smooth petals and some even smell very good. Some types of petunias available today are hybrids that are used for specific designs or purposes. When choosing a Petunia, you will usually be faced with the option of choosing a grandiflora Petunia or a multiflora Petunia. Both types will be annuals in colder climate regions and perennials in warmer climate areas.
Ggrandiflora varieties are among the oldest variety of petunias there are. These varieties of petunias usually grow to be about 10 to 12 inches high and have rather large 4 inch or 5 inch flowers with the wavy blossoms that many people associate with petunias. While grandiflora petunias have large beautiful flowers, the petals of the flowers are very susceptible to damage from rain and heat. Also, pinching the blossoms of the flower, or deadheading, of grandiflora petunias is rather tedious and difficult as well.
Grandiflora petunias are popular choices for flowerbeds and containers that are covered, or partially covered, to protect them from the elements. Their large flower blossoms also make them very popular choices for bouquets and cutting vases as well.
Varieties of multiflora petunias are much more compact and require much less space than grandiflora varieties. The flowers of multiflora petunias are also much smaller and usually average about 2 inches in width. However, multiflora varieties are also much more prolific and propagate and much more easily. In addition, multiflora variety petunias are much more resilient and weather resistant in terms of withstanding rain and extreme heat.
Because of that the ability of multiflora petunias to withstand harsher weather conditions, multiflora petunias are much more versatile and can be planted in many areas that are not suitable for grandiflora varieties. Multiflora petunias not only do well in flowerbeds and containers, they are excellent choices for walk path borders and cutting gardens as well.
Hybrid Petunia Considerations
Introduced in the 1970s, hybrid petunias are varieties that usually offer the larger flowers of grandiflora petunias and the weather tolerance of multiflora varieties. Hybrid petunias have become so popular that a new term was coined just for this category – “floribundas”. Today, florabunda petunias are available with both small and large flowers and are popular choices all over the country.
Other Types of Petunias to Consider
Wave Petunias - Wave petunias usually only grow to about 6 inches in height; however, these types of petunias can spread to be about 4 feet wide. Wave petunias make excellent groundcover or trailers from containers or pots. Unlike some types of petunias, wave petunias do not need to be deadheaded.
“Supertunia” Petunias - The “Supertunia” variety is propagated more like a vegetable than a flower because it uses cuttings and not seed. Very fast growing and prolific bloomers, “Supertunia” petunias require a lot of feeding. However, they bloom often an repeatedly and are very weather tolerant.