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Annuals vs. Perennials

Annuals are plants that need to be replanted in your garden every year. They germinate quickly after the winter so that they do not have to compete for food and light. The growth of annuals are triggered by the length of the day and once the light is just right, annuals flower, release their seeds, and die, in order to maximize their spread.

Perennials on the other hand, have permanent structures such as over-wintering bulbs, which allow them to regrow for many seasons.

Both annuals and perennials have their benefits and it depends on what you are looking for in a garden.

Perennials do require some patience, as you may not receive any yield for up to three to five seasons after the initial planting. However, once they are established they can be more affordable and require less effort, as you do not need to replant every season. Don't forget that they will need regular maintenance and fertilizing. If you are planning on tending to this garden plot for years to come, perennials can be an excellent option.

Annuals grow quickly and are abundant not long after planting, meaning you will be provided with a harvest within a few weeks to a couple months. The cost is higher, as you need to buy new seeds or seedlings yearly. However, they are a good option if your garden plot is only available short term. Annuals are also beneficial for crop rotation, which is an important component of healthy, fertile soil. It also reduces the likelihood of pest and weed infestations.

Whatever you decide, it is important to maintain garden health through weeding, fertilizing, watering and pest management to ensure you have the best garden you can!

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Humber College and LAMP CHC

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