There are so many different kinds of flowers to grow from seed, and it’s easy for anyone interested in gardening to choose the best type.

Flowers that require a lot of space, like Orchids and Sunflowers, should be avoided unless you have plenty of room because they will take up too much space; instead, go with annual flowers such as Dahlias or Poppies.

What are annual flowers?

Annual flowers are plants that complete their life cycle in one growing season. Examples: Some annual flowers include impatiens, petunias, and marigolds.

Annual flowers are plants that flower once per year. They include tulips, daffodils, hyacinths, irises, lilies, carnations, roses, chrysanthemums, sunflowers, daisies, gladioli, peonies, mums, gerberas, poinsettias, and others. The best way to grow these flowers is to plant them indoors during winter.

What are the best annual flowers from seed indoors?

Best Indoor Flower Seeds to Germinate

I’ll start by sharing the flower seeds I always start indoors. Both in the garden and in pots, I rely heavily on them.

Growing the seeds yourself is a great alternative to spending money each spring on pre-grown plants.

1. Marigold

Marigolds, one of my favorite flowers, are simple to grow from seed and thrive well in the house. They not only aid the garden by bringing in pollinators, but they can also keep unwanted pests away.

The seeds should be started indoors eight to ten weeks before the typical spring planting date. French marigolds and Crackerjack are two of my favorite plant types.

2. Castor Bean

Starting castor bean seeds indoors is recommended due to their demanding nature. The seedlings develop rapidly after they emerge from their shells. Red castor beans, which are my favorite variety, are quite stunning.

It is recommended to start the seeds indoors for about a month before transplanting them outside. Here, you will find detailed instructions for growing castor beans from seed.

3. Coleus

Since the coleus seeds are so small that they can be washed away if planted in the garden, this plant is ideal for starting indoors from seed.

In addition, it takes a very long period for them to develop from seeds. Therefore, the seeds must be planted indoors and grown for 8-10 weeks before being moved outdoors. My favorite part of this arrangement is the rainbow coleus.

4. Zinnia

Zinnias are another essential plant in my summer gardens. However, you should start the seeds indoors in the spring because they can’t handle the cold and will die if planted outside.

Plant them four to five weeks before your last frost date to ensure they have a solid head start. These dwarf zinnias, known as Thumbelina, are quite stunning, as is the Solar Flare Blend.

Many vegetable seeds must be started inside to ensure optimal growth and sufficient time to harvest delicious, healthy food.

So, I’ll keep going with my list by including my preferred choices for the earliest indoor-starting vegetables.

1. cauliflower

Cauliflower may be a slow-maturing crop (depending on the type), so starting the seeds inside is a good idea.

Aim to begin sowing your seeds four to six weeks before your region’s typical spring planting date. Pick the Early Snowball variety, and you won’t go wrong. Alternatively, you may attempt a colorful blend of white and purple cauliflower seeds.

2. Brussels Sprout

Due to the lengthy time required for Brussels sprouts to mature from seeds, indoor planting is recommended.

While early spring is a good time to put seedlings outside, care must be taken to prevent frost damage. The Hestia variety of Brussels sprouts is highly recommended.

3. Tomatoes

Tomatoes are one of the most common vegetables grown from seed, and they are also one of the simplest to germinate indoors. So start them indoors around 6-8 weeks before the average last frost.

Until the earth has warmed and the threat of frost has passed, hold off on planting the seedlings in the garden. I particularly enjoy cherry tomatoes, beefsteak tomatoes, and brandy wine tomatoes.

4. Okra

If you’ve never tasted okra, you miss out on much pleasure. The flowers are lovely, and they yield tasty food as well. However, to avoid damaging the seeds and plants while transferring them to the garden, sow them inside four to six weeks before the last frost date.

Pre-soaking the seeds for 12-24 hours improves their chances of germinating. Even though I love red Burgundy and think it’s essential, I also grow green okra because it’s so pretty and delicious.

5. Peppers

Growing peppers from seed indoors is a breeze. Some of my favorites are peppers like sweet bells, cayennes, and jalapenos. It would be best if you began sowing them 8 to 12 weeks before your area’s average last frost date in the spring. Transplanting them into the garden before the soil is warm enough could impede their growth.

How do you start annual flowers from seed indoors?

First, You’ll Need the following: 

  • A windowsill or some other bright, sunny spot
  • A seed-starting mix (or a combination of peat moss, vermiculite, and perlite)
  • Some small pots or cell packs
  • Water

Step-by-step guide

1. Fill your pots or cell packs with the seed-starting mix. You want the mix to be moist but not wet. If it’s too dry, your seeds won’t germinate. If it’s too wet, they may rot.

2. Sow your seeds according to the package directions. This usually means placing them on the surface of the mix and lightly pressing them in.

3. Cover the pots with plastic wrap or a clear lid to create a mini greenhouse effect and help keep the soil moist. Please place them in your bright, sunny spot and check on them daily.

4. Once your seeds have germinated (sprouted), remove the cover and water to keep the soil moist but not wet. When they get their first true leaves (not just seed leaves), you can transplant them into larger pots if desired.

5. Look for pests like aphids that might attack your seedlings. Use insecticidal soap spray or horticultural oil to control these insects.

6. After your seedlings reach 1 foot tall, thin them for more growth.

7. As soon as your seedlings have been hardened off (exposed to outdoor temperatures without protection for at least three days), you can plant them outdoors.

How do you care for annual flowers starting from seed?

How often annual water flowers start from seed depends on the soil type, how hot and sunny it is, and how big the plants are. You’ll need to water more frequently in sandy soil than clay soil. If it’s hot and sunny, you may need to water every day or twice daily. On the other hand, if the plants are small, you can probably get away with watering every other day.


Fertilizing isn’t necessary for all annual flowers starting from seed, but it can boost them if they struggle. You can use a liquid fertilizer or a slow-release granular fertilizer. Apply according to the package directions.

Pruning and Deadheading

Pruning isn’t necessary for most annual flowers starting from seed, but deadheading (removing spent blossoms) is important to encourage continued blooming. Just snip off the faded flowers at the base of the plant.

Seed starting

To get a jump on the growing season, start your seeds indoors in pots or trays. Fill the pots or trays with a sterile seed-starting mix and sow the seeds according to the package directions. Keep the soil moist but not wet, and place the pots or trays in a warm, sunny location once the seedlings emerge, thin them so that only the strongest plants remain.


When transplanting annual flowers from indoor pots to outdoor gardens, harden them off first. To do this, slowly acclimate them to outdoor conditions by placing them in a sheltered spot for longer periods over 7-10 days. Once they’ve been hardened off, transplant them into prepared garden beds and water wells.


Once your annual flowers are transplanted into the garden, they will need regular watering and fertilizing to keep them looking their best. Water them deeply and regularly, especially during periods of extended dry weather. Fertilize them every 2-4 weeks with a water-soluble fertilizer according to the package directions.

What are the benefits of growing annual flowers from seed?

  • You can grow a wider variety of flowers.
  • They are often cheaper than buying plants.
  • You can get a head start on the growing season.

Are there any drawbacks to growing annual flowers from seed?

  • You won’t have flowers the first year.
  • Seeds can be expensive.
  • Some flowers are difficult to grow from seed.


  • You can choose from a wide variety of flower types.
  • Seeds are easy to store and transport.
  • When growing flowers from seed, you can control the growing environment (e.g., light, temperature, humidity).

Frequently Asked Questions [FAQs]

1. Where can I buy the annual seeds?

You can buy them from any gardening store. They are usually sold for $20-$40 per pack.

2. What kind of soil is required?

The type of soil needed for growing vegetables depends on what you are trying to grow. If you want to grow tomatoes, then you need rich loam soils with lots of organic matter. If you want to plant peppers, you will need light, sandy clay soil.

3. What is the watering frequency?

The watering frequency refers to how often you water your lawn. You can usually set up an automatic sprinkler system for this purpose.

4. What type of light is needed?

The type of light needed depends on the activity being performed. For example, if you are working with paints, you need a bright light source. On the other hand, if you use a microscope, you will want a dark environment.

5. Should I fertilize them?

Annuals should be fertilized when they are actively growing, usually around mid-spring. Fertilizing them at this point will help them grow faster and produce more blooms.


Growing annual flowers from seed is a great way to add color and interest to your garden without spending money on plants. It’s also good to try out new varieties before planting them outside. However, it does take some patience and planning ahead. So don’t expect to see flowers popping up overnight.

About the Author

Virginia E. Hayes is a gardening enthusiast who loves to write about gardening tools, safety issues, and ways to keep gardens clean and safe. With her vast experience in gardening, she provides valuable insights and tips to help fellow gardening enthusiasts to enhance their gardening experience. Her passion for gardening and writing has made her a sought-after author in the gardening community.

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