Four o'clock plants, also known as Mirabilis jalapa, are beautiful flowering annuals that are native to both North and South America. The bright coloured blossoms open up during the mid-afternoon hours displaying bell-shaped flowers in splendid shades of white, yellow, pink, red and magenta. These afternoon blossoms will often remain open throughout the evening and night hours during the summer months. These hardy annuals require little maintenance and will typically reach heights of 3 to 4 feet. These spectacular flowers can be grown from both seed as well as from previously dug up tubers.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
Things you need
- Garden shovel or spade
- Four o'clock tubers
- Organic fertiliser
- Garden rake
Determine a location for the four o'clock plant. Consider the size of the established plant as well as the amount of sunlight that the plant needs for continued growth when selecting a planting location. Typically this plant does best when provided with at least six to eight hours of direct sunlight per day.
Rake the garden area to loosen the soil to a depth that is at least three times the length of the tuber to be planted. The four o'clock tubers will become rooted much easier if the soil has been previously loosened. Remove any extra plant vegetation from the area while raking.
Mix in an organic fertiliser of choice while raking the dirt. Local nurseries as well as area garden centres can provide assistance in determining which fertiliser is best to meet your needs.
Dig a hole that is approximately three times deeper than the height of the tuber being planted using either a garden shovel or a spade. Set the excess dirt to the side to later cover the tuber.
Place the tuber in the hole so that the roots of the tuber are pointed downward. Cover the tuber with the extra soil/fertiliser that had been set aside.
Water the planted tuber. Be sure to provide adequate moisture so that the water will reach the roots of the tuber.
Tips and warnings
- These particular plants will continue to reseed themselves; therefore, it is important to frequently monitor their growth and trim the plants to maintain the desired size for your garden.
- All parts of the four o'clock plant are poisonous.
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